With a wide range of air conditioners available to help combat the summer ‘heat & stickiness’. They can also be a heating solution, making them an all-round fix for the more temperamental climates. When the weather heats up. There's nothing like waving a magic wand (your remote control), and transforming warm air into icy-cool air. Or indeed, the reverse: filling your home with comfy warm air on a chilly winter's day. This wizardry is achieved with the addition of an air conditioner in your home. Designed to keep your rooms feeling fresh and comfortable, air conditioners are available in a wide range of sizes, styles and price brackets, making it easy to find the unit that’s perfect for your needs. There are a number of practical considerations to bear in mind when choosing an air conditioner. Below is the guide that will help you to select the right product for your home.
Factors to consider before making a purchase
The cooling capacity of an air conditioner is measured in British thermal units per hour (Btu/Hr). To find the best BTUs needed to cool your room, multiply the square footage of the space by 10 and then add 4,000.
EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio)
A room air conditioners EER, or Energy-Efficiency Ratio, is the ratio of the cooling output divided by the unit's power consumption. The higher the EER, the more efficient the model.
Most room air conditioners come with reusable electrostatic filters, which may be treated with triclosan. If purchasing a unit with an antimicrobial filter, ask the retailer to replace it with an untreated electrostatic filter.
Some air conditioners have up to four different mode settings, allowing you to either cool, dehumidify, fan or heat the air as needed – making them suitable for use whatever the temperature.
Washable pre-filters remove dust, dirt and hair from the air being drawn into the filter, improving the air quality of your home, and preventing your air conditioner from becoming clogged up and working less efficiently. These filters can then easily be removed, cleaned and replaced.
Models that scored excellent or very good in noise tests are so quiet that the only sound you might hear is the fan running. Air conditioners that scored fair for noise could disturb light sleepers when set on low, and are distracting to all when set on high.
Installing an air conditioner is very technical and involves many processes. You will need to hire a licensed professional to install and service your new air conditioning system. These air conditioner installation experts have had relevant training and are licensed to handle refrigerants.
Types of Air Conditioners
Split Air Conditioners
Split system air conditioners are generally considered to be the most effective of all the home air conditioning types. They consist of two units, one of which is installed outside the home, the other inside. Generally, split system air conditioning units tend to be quieter, more powerful and more efficient than the alternatives. They are ideal for anyone looking to cool larger rooms or even an entire residence. Split system air conditioners also tend to include additional features such as built-in Wi-Fi to air ionizers and motion sensors, which increase air quality and efficiency respectively.
Window/Wall Air Conditioners
Window or wall air conditioners offer a more affordable alternative to split system air conditioners and can still deliver outstanding results in the right circumstances. Window/Wall air conditioners are ideal for controlling the temperature in a single room or a confined space. When used properly, window air conditioners can be extremely efficient and effective. Window/Wall air conditioners also boast numerous useful features such as timers, remote controls and air ionizers.
Portable Air Conditioners
A portable air conditioner unit is perfect for anyone who wants to regulate the temperature in a single room without any professional skills. Compact and easy-to-move, these units can follow you throughout your home. Portable air conditioners are ideal for anyone in rented accommodation. Portable air conditioners also boast a range of convenience features such as remote controls and timers. Functions such as omnidirectional louvres can help spread cooled air evenly throughout the room for better results.