Living in Australia can be a challenge when it comes to our hot weather. We are the hottest countries in the world in the eyes of those who have visited us. This is why selling air conditioning units and installation is big business. Choosing the right air conditioner is tricky, without the correct size and power, it doesn’t have the capability to cool your home to an extent that you want. Below are some information to guide you in a right direction for you to choose the ideal air conditioner for your home or office.
Types of Air Conditioners
Here we will discuss the types of air conditioners that are available on the market for homeowners and how each can differ depending on the usage.
Split System – This type consists of two parts, one attached to the internal wall and the other sits outside to exhaust heat out. It is a low cost installation with separate unit per room providing flexibility. The unit inside must be position away from anything that generates heat, such as appliances, ovens or refrigerators as this will result in a reversal effect and won’t allow the cold air to cool the room. The common location are up on the wall, this will allow the air to distribute around the room. While the external unit to be placed away from dust or falling leaves and a spot that won’t disturb you or the neighbour.
Multi Split – With some similarity to the split system, multi-split air-conditioner consist of one outdoor unit either connecting two or more indoor unit. It’s ide al where the property has the rooms relatively close together. Commonly used when split system or ducted system aren’t applicable. The advantage in using this unit type, it require less ductwork and have the same price range to a split system.
Ducted – This system is design to either cool or heat an entire home and it is pricey to install, costing thousands of dollars. The ducted system consists of an outdoor unit and a central indoor unit (commonly installed up on the ceiling). Each room has a sensor and the air ducts starts from the indoor unit to air outlets. A compressor unit is required to pump cool air throughout your home and it is to be installed outside area. Overall ducted air conditioner works more efficiently in cooling your home, this is the reason most restaurants, offices and hospitals use it.
Reverse Cycle – An air conditioner that has a reverse system built in gives homeowners the best of both world – warm air during colder months and cooler air in hotter months. By having a heating element the unit is a little more expensive than when you just using it for cooling but are a practical investment for those who is living in an erratic climates. When compared to a ducted system that has a heating feature, it will be more complicated to set up and expensive to install.
Wall/Window – This air con unit is more affordable compared to split or ducted system. It has the capacity to cool a room up to 50m2. The design is suitable to control the temperature in a single room or a confine space. It is less common these days compared to split system unit. Depending on the size of the unit, it can be plugged into a normal power point while a larger one require hardwiring.
Portable – A portable air conditioner unit has the ability to move from to room to room with ease and convenience. Most unit consist of a flexible duct attached to a window to funnel the heat outside. Highly suitable for people who are renting and has no other feasible option to install an air conditioning unit. Increase portability may come at a higher price but well worth the investment when a room needs cooling on a hot summer day.
Size & Capacity
Not all air conditioners are equal in size and capacity, they are design to suit a room based on their area. It is best to get the right power to have the best outcome in cooling your living space. Be aware underpowered cooling unit result in quick burn out due to the system being overworked to maintain the desired temperature, which will cost you more in a long run. So how do we calculate the power that is need? The general rule for every square metre area you are looking at 125 watts. For example a 25m2 room require a unit that has 125x25 = 3125 Watts. Don’t be overly concern when you are unable to find an air conditioning unit exactly match your room size, as long you don’t go over too far off.
Features to Consider
Once the size and capacity is determined, the exciting part is to make a decision on the features that you prefer in an air conditioner. Modern technology now are fun in cooling and easier ever before when it comes to using it. Below are some features to consider when purchasing an air conditioning unit:
Depending on the design, make and model, some air conditioner consists of a built in sensor, which detect when a person is in the room. Certain sensor has the ability to adjust the temperature accordingly to the number of people in the room. When the room is empty it select the ideal mode to save energy while keeping the room cool.
This feature is very handy especially for sleep. Throughout the night, it can get cooler, as a result, you don’t really need to have the air con on. This feature will automatically switch itself off saving you energy. It also can adjust the temperature while you sleep.
A blade-like attachment on the air outlet are called louvres. It’s either use to spread air through the room by rotating the louvres or keeping it stand-still to focus on a particular direction. Certain air conditioners usually in the high end model consists of an automatic moving louvres while others is manually adjusted.
There are some misinformation out in the public that certain air conditioning unit recycle old air, leaving you sick after using it. This is not the case. Most air conditioner consists of air filters already installed removing particles, odours, smoke and bacteria from the air. To ensure proper air filtering, make the right choice in selecting an air conditioner that does this job well. Always remember to occasionally clean the air filter monthly to prevent build up, which over time can cause the air con not to work properly.
Not all air conditioners have dehumidifier function, most of them only have the basic feature such as auto, cool, heat, fan and speed. The dehumidifier removes moisture out of the air, making the room less humid. Dehumidifier can be useful in climates areas that has high humidity such as Queensland, Northern New South Wales and Western Australia.
How to Know Which Air Conditioner is Right for You?
We hope that all the information above are enough to give you some guidance in choosing the right air conditioner for you. To recap, below are some quick pointers to make your buying decision an enjoyable one:
- Know how powerful you need your air conditioner to be based on the area that you want too cool down.
- How much would you want to spend and the running cost.
- Determine how often you are using the air conditioner unit.
- Know if you want your air conditioner to be reverse cycle, allowing you to circulate warm air in winter.