Saturday, March 5, 2011

How To Choose The Right Air Conditioner For Your Needs

Air conditioners are becoming increasingly popular. It is estimated, based on government figures, that almost half of the households in Australia have an air conditioner in one form or another.
What to Look At When Buying An Air Conditioner.
When you start looking for an airconditioner, the first thing you will notice is the different types of air conditioners, and the large number of styles within each brand. Therefore the first thing you need to do is decide what you want the air conditioner for.

Do you want to cool a few selected rooms, or the whole house? Do you want to also provide heat during the cooler months? You will be guided toward certain types of air conditioners based on your answers. I will look at the different types of air conditioners to help you with your decision. These include the portable, wall or window, split system and ducted air conditioning systems.
The first variety I will look at is the small portable air conditioner. This style is best to cool small areas. It is great if you want to cool different rooms at different times of the day. For example, cool the lounge during the day, then move the air conditioner to the bed room at night.
The next size up is the window or wall air conditioner. This is a permanent solution for a particular room or rooms. Next is the split system. This style of air conditioner is generally a more efficient form of air conditioning, and also quiter, as the motor is outside.

When selecting a new air conditioner, check out ones that incorporate the new inverter technology. The use of an inverter allows the motor and therefore the compressor to work at different speeds. That allows you to use less power when you don't need it, saving on running costs. This needs to be balanced against the fact that these models are more expensive to buy.
Determining Power Usage Of Air conditioners
When buying an air conditioner, check the energy rating stickers to determine how energy efficient they are. There are 3 types of energy ratings for air conditioners, depending on what they do. The cooling only variety have a blue band of stars, and a blue box that shows the energy rating figure. The reverse cycle air conditioners have 2 bands of stars. Blue for cooling and red for heating. There are also 2 energy consumption  figures for cooling and heating. Finally you have a red band of stars for the variety that only heat.
The energy rating of air conditions is a great way to choose the most efficient air conditioners, but you also need to consider the initial purchase price, warranty periods, back up support and user reviews to make sure you get a quality air conditioner.
How To Choose The Right Size Air Conditioner
Choosing the right sized air conditioner is critical. Get one too small, and you will not get the cooling results you want and you will over wok the motor, reducing the effective life of the equipment. Get one too big and you will be paying too much to run it.
The output capacity of an air conditioner is measured by kilowatts (kW). As a guide to working out what size air conditioner you need based on room size, you need approximately 125 kilowatts per square metre of floor space in living areas and 80 kilowatts per square metre for bedrooms and other small rooms. This is a guide only, and depends on factors such as how much insulation you have, the location and design of your house.

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