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A Guide to Energy Efficient Air Conditioning

A Guide to Energy Efficient Air Conditioning

Air conditioning not only provides comfort, but it can even save lives during very hot climates. However, using aircon is sometimes frustrating because of increased electrical bills. One way of solving this inconvenience is to choose an energy efficient air con unit, which sufficiently cools indoor air without consuming too much electricity. Another way to achieve efficient air conditioning is to modify the air con unit and the room.

What Efficient Air conditioning Means

Air conditioning efficiency is measured by how air an air con unit cools the air compared to the power it uses. The Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of the air con signifies how well it does its job. To get this value, the energy of the air con unit (in Btu’s) is divided by its power consumption in Watt-hours. The higher the EER, the more efficient the machine is. An EER of 9 and above is recommended for effective air-cooling in hot weather. This is usually indicated on the unit’s label or manual.

Weighing EER over Price

An air con unit with a high efficiency rate costs more than one with a medium to low rate because it is made with better quality materials. The high cost is said to be worth it since it greatly reduces electricity consumption, which results to a lower monthly electric bill. A household with a lot of expenses will be greatly helped by high efficiency domestic air conditioning. When choosing an air con to save costs, a buyer may do the following: Know how much the new air con reduces the electric bill. Assuming that the aircon wasn’t used yet, this may be computed by;
  1. Multiplying the energy efficient aircon’s kilowatts per hour usage by the price per kilowatt hour charged by the electricity provider.
  2. Multiplying this amount by the number of aircon hours that will be used in a month.
  3. Adding the answer to the charge for your overall electrical consumption (not including the charge for the aircon).
  4. Comparing the sum to the previous electric bill (with or without a regular domestic air conditioning unit.).
  5. Get the difference and multiply it to the number of months you plan to use the aircon. Determine whether the electricity bill reductions will be equal or exceed the extra cost of using a high performance aircon.

How Aircon Size Affects Energy Efficiency

Air conditioning units bring down temperatures by absorbing heat from the air and releasing it outdoors, and by removing humidity, which increases warmth. There are air conditioners that have thermostats that regulate their cooling action. Some need to be adjusted manually to achieve the desired temperature. The size of the domestic air conditioning unit must be proportional to the room. The largeness of an air conditioner affects how much cool air it can fan out. A small unit in a large room may have a hard time cooling it so it will be left on longer – this will use up more power.

A large unit in a small room cools it rapidly. If it has a thermostat, its sensor will detect that the surrounding air has reached the chosen temperature and it will switch off. This might be a problem because the room might also be humid; the unit is already deactivated before it can fully dehumidify the room so some warmth will still linger. In addition, if the room warms up again, the aircon will reactivate and continue the cycle repeatedly.

This consumes a lot of overall electricity since starting the unit requires much electric power. Thus, the aircon’s size must match the room’s size accordingly to conserve energy. Take note that portable air conditioning usually involves smaller units. Refrain from using a portable unit for domestic air conditioning of large rooms and houses. This will prevent overworking the machine and consuming more electric power.

Window Units vs. Portable Units

Window units are generally more efficient than portable air conditioning. There are portable air conditioners without an exhaust pipe that is connected to the outside of the room. This causes it to retain warm air, thus the cooling power is lessened. Aircon types that are directly in contact with outside air can release hot air more effectively compared to those that utilise pipes.
  • Inverters

    Inverters are devices that adjust the aircon’s cooling rate according to a fixed setting. It is considered to be more efficient than fixed speed air con machines without inverters since it decreases its power usage the nearer it comes to the preferred temperatures.
  • Filters

    Dirt in filters blocks the airflows going in and coming out of the device. This means less cool air is blown into the room and more warm air is kept inside. Cleaning the filter will result into an improvement of the aircon’s performance. Portable air conditioning units are generally easier to clean.
  • Insulation

    The air conditioner and its components must have adequate insulation to prevent cooled or warmed air from leaking out from it. The room must also have no open windows and gaps to prevent conditioned air from escaping and prevent unconditioned air from entering the room.
  • Positioning

    An air con unit must be located somewhere that doesn’t receive direct heat. If possible, it must be on a shaded corner. The temperature of the air conditioner affects its thermostat and its ability to produce cooler air. If the places of heat and shade vary in your place, consider using portable air conditioning.
  • Portable units
  • Portable units
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