A window air conditioner ensures a cool environment and helps you to reduce energy costs. We will show you what is essential for window air conditioning systems and give you a few tips on correct installation.
How do Window A/C units work?
A window air conditioner, also known as a window A/C, is typically used to cool a specific room. It can be an easy-to-install alternative to a central air conditioning system if you don’t need to cool the whole house.
There are many operating modes for window air conditioners. The cooling mode reduces the temperature and humidity of the room’s air and then recirculates it with a fan.
You can choose from several preset cooling levels to help you keep your room in a climate that is right for you. You can set a desired temperature for the unit. When the air reaches a preset level, the air conditioner turns off. The unit starts cooling the air when the temperature is above the specified setting.
The fan-only mode uses less energy because it doesn’t use A/C. The window air conditioners have heating modes. As with the cooling function, you set the temperature and the heating system cycles on and off to maintain it. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for safety, installation and operation.
It is crucial to choose the right size window air conditioner for your room. An undersized unit may not be able to cool the room completely, while one that’s too large won’t remove enough humidity, leaving the air feeling damp. Determine the room’s square footage by taking the length of the floor and dividing it by its width.
The window air conditioner has a British thermal unit rating. What does BTU stand for? The amount of heat an A/C can remove from a room is indicated by this number. To cool a larger space, look for a unit with a higher rating.
A British Thermal Unit is a rating used to determine the heating or cooling capacity of an appliance. To raise the temperature of one pound of liquid water by one degree at a constant pressure of one atmosphere, 1 BTU is the amount of heat required.
If you want to cool a small room on a hot day, you should buy an air conditioner with a minimum of 7000BTUs. Medium rooms need around 10,000BTU and larger rooms and office spaces need 15000BTU.
The guidelines for the room size are here:
- 150 – 350 square feet: 5,000 – 8,000 BTU
- 350 – 550 square feet: 8,000 – 12,000 BTU
- 550 – 1,050 square feet: 12,000 – 18,500 BTU
- 1,050 – 1,600 square feet: 18,500 – 25,000 BTU
Consider factors that may reduce or increase the cooling need, such as how much shade or sun your room receives. As the BTU rating increases, the size and weight of the air conditioner do as well. Consider the window air conditioner energy efficiency ratio (EER). It’s important to choose appliances with a higher EER rating.
Window Air Conditioner Features
It is time to consider these efficient and convenient features once you have determined which A/C size is best for you.
- A programmable timer allows you to set the air conditioner to turn on and off at specific times to reduce energy consumption, much like how a video game can be programmed with specific start and endpoints.
- You can manually adjust fan speed and cooling level with the help of mechanical controls.
- You can set a specific temperature for the air conditioner with electronic controls. Some models can ramp up their cooling gradually. This ensures that the noise is lowered and the temperature remains pleasant.
- Some window air conditioners have electronic ionizers that can remove pollutants from the air.
- Venting options allow you to choose between recirculating room air or drawing outside air into the room. Air conditioners remove moisture from the air while they are running. It is therefore important that you look at the dehumidification rating to prevent mold or bad smells, among other things.
- With a remote control you can adjust the settings of your air conditioning system and switch it on and off conveniently from the other side of the room. Some remote controls have built-in temperature sensors that ensure that your space remains evenly cool and that the air conditioning is only activated when the air around the remote control reaches a specific temperature.
- Some air conditioning systems have built-in filter sensors. They will inform you when the air filter needs to be cleaned in order to achieve better air quality. It is easiest to buy a model with a washable filter so that cleaning works smoothly and easily.
- Some models have an extra-long cord that is useful when the window you choose is not near an electrical outlet.
How to install a window air conditioner
Most window air conditioners will fit a standard window that you can raise or lower. Carefully measure the inside dimensions of the installation window to ensure that you select a suitable model. Window air conditioners are heavy, so it is essential to have someone help you install them.
What to look for before installing a window air conditioner:
- You should install the air conditioner in a shady window. This contributes to a more efficient operation. It is easiest to take a north-facing window as it will be in the shade for most of the day.
- You should also make sure that the window you choose to install has a suitable electrical outlet nearby. Some manufacturers stipulate that you should only use the device without an extension cable. In addition, the socket must be able to handle the electrical load of the air conditioning system.
- Different models have different plug shapes and power requirements, which means that some will require a modified outlet to handle the power load. Before buying, check that the air conditioner you choose is compatible with your outlet. The easiest way to find this out is to look in the manual for the device.
- Consult an electrician if you have any doubts or questions. They can not only help you with the installation but may also have a few tips ready.
This is how a window air conditioner works best
- The air should flow unhindered around the entire air conditioning system in order to ensure the best possible cooling process. Make sure that there are no objects in the area of the air conditioning system. Otherwise something could get caught in the device. This also applies to items inside your home. Pay particular attention to things like curtains or small items that can get tangled in the air conditioner.
- To avoid unnecessarily using a lot of electricity, you should keep the cool air in the room by closing all windows and openings. It is also an advantage to close your blinds or shutters when it is too sunny outside. Just remember not to block the airflow.
- Proper insulation of your home are a must if you want to use a window air conditioner efficiently.
- If this is not the case, foam gaskets and side panels can help seal and isolate the area around the air conditioner.
- Keep track of your electricity usage and use appliances such as dishwashers and dryers mainly during the cooler hours of the day.
Window Air Conditioner Maintenance
Regular maintenance is essential if you want to use your new window air conditioner efficiently for years to come.
Here are some things you should do regularly:
- Air filters are essential and therefore need to be cleaned more frequently. To do this, use the cleaning instructions given in the manual.
- A cleaner air filter is not only more hygienic, but it also ensures less dust and more efficient cooling of the room.
- From time to time, you may need to replace a filter. However, there is a trick you can use to extend the life of your filter: vacuum the filter or wash it with mild soap and cold water. Before you reinstall the filter, it should be completely dry.
- The outer housing should also be cleaned more frequently. Use a sponge and cold water for this.
- If you do not need the device in the colder seasons, you should prepare the device for correct storage. How this works is usually described in the manual.
- Last but not least: Always remember to unplug your air conditioner before doing any maintenance.
Window air conditioners are great for cooling a specific room. If you’ve always thought about getting a device like this, hopefully this post will have some valuable tips that will help you with the installation and efficient use.