What to Consider When Buying an Air Conditioner

Australia is one of the hottest countries in the world, but it also gets a winter chill, so there are no surprises why most Australian households choose to have air conditioning installed. Despite this, no two households are the same, so it’s not as simple as picking up any system and hoping for the best. There are many things that need to be considered when buying an air conditioner to make sure that you optimise your energy use and get the best unit for your money.

When it comes to buying an air conditioner, it’s important to find the best system for your home. Here’s what to consider when buying an air conditioner.

Location

Where is your home situated? Australia has a wide variety of climates, from extreme heat up north to the colder climates in the south. Your climate should be a major consideration when choosing the type of air conditioning system for your home. If you’re only likely to ever need cooling, then you only need to invest in a cooling-only system. Temperatures in some parts of Australia are known to fluctuate quickly, in this case, you may need to consider a reverse cycle system.

Type of Air Conditioner

Once you’ve thought about your location, it’s probably a good time to have a think about what type of air conditioner is most suited for your home

• Split systems – Split system air conditioners suck out heat and blow out cold air into a single room. They are made up of a wall mounted unit inside, with a compressor that sits outside. An upside of having the compressor outside is that the system is much quieter than other units, however, the downside is that these systems are generally not powerful enough to cool a whole home. Split systems are mainly both heating and cooling.

• Reverse systems – Reverse system air conditioners can blow out hot or cold air, so are great for those living in variable climates. They are usually more expensive than systems that only blow out cool air.

• Portables systems – If you have a small room or apartment, then a portable air conditioner may be all that you require. An added bonus is that they can be moved around to where they are needed, however they are usually ineffective in larger spaces.

• Wall/Window systems – Wall/Window-mounted air conditioners are an older technology that is less common. The interior face pumps hot air through the wall or window via a hose, however, they can be noisy, bulky and require outlet power.

• Ducted systems – Ducted air conditioning is the most expensive type of system, and requires the extensive installation of ducts underneath or in your ceiling space your home, as well as an exterior compressor unit. An upside is that ducted systems are the most efficient systems, and many offices and commercial spaces choose these systems as well as domestic properties.

Size and Power

One of the main considerations when buying an air conditioning unit is the size and power needed to cool or heat the space. Air conditioners that are underpowered will need to work hard to maintain a constant temperature, which can reduce their lifetime, while overpowered air conditioners will use more energy than needed. The following factors should be carefully measured before making your choice:

• Room size – The size of the room or rooms that a single unit needs to cool or heat.
• People present – People emit heat and areas that are more often populated will need more cooling energy.
• Appliances and furniture – furniture can absorb energy from heating and cooling and electrical appliances often give off heat of their own which needs counteracting.
• Walls facing sun and windows – Windows and sunny walls heat a room, increasing the cooling load of an air conditioner.

It’s recommended that you purchase an air conditioner unit with 125 watts for every square meter that needs to be cooled, but the best way to find a system that is right for your home is to hire a professional to take a look.

If you have any questions about the right air conditioning system for your home, or would like to know more about installation or maintenance of electrical items please don’t hesitate to give us a call.

With over 9 years of experience under our belt, we pride ourselves on providing air con and electrical services of the highest quality. Get in touch with us today.

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