It's getting hotter by the day? Air coolers are better, but they only add to the humidity, which makes the summer months unbearable. One of the best options then is to install an air conditioner in your home. But how? The answer is simple. Start looking for the Right air conditioner for your home. A right sized AC is the one that you buy keeping in mind the size of your room, ambient climate, amount of light coming into the room, area of windows, direction of windows, floor number, number of people occupying the room, number of lights and computers in the room. That sounds complex!
Here is an easy guide to help you buy the Right Air Conditioner :
1. Tonnage: Is bigger the better? Ton or Tonnage measures the cooling capacity of an air conditioner as per the size and requirement of the room. A thumb rule used internationally is that for every square foot, you need 20 Btu/hr (British Thermal Units per hour). The cooling capacity of an AC is its ability to extract a certain amount of heat from a room in an hour, which is measured in Btu/hr (British thermal unit/hour). The AC is considered to be more powerful when the Btu/hr value is higher. The Btu for an AC usually ranges from 5,000 to 24,000, with 12,000 Btu being equivalent to one ton. When it comes to air conditioners, bigger is not necessarily better – an oversized air-conditioner is less effective and less energy efficient. If the unit is too large, it will cool the room quickly, but only remove some of the humidity, leaving the room damp. A right sized unit removes humidity effectively as it cools. In order to cool a room uniformly while maximising efficiency, the direction of the cooled air should be delivered to the center of the room rather than the left or right. Here is an approximation to assist you in picking the right sized AC for your room:
- Room Size Up to 120 sqft, AC capacity Needed is up to 0.75 ton
- Room Size 121 – 150 sqft, AC capacity Needed is up to 1 ton
- Room Size 151 – 250 sqft, AC capacity Needed is up to 1.5 ton
- Room Size 251 – 400 sqft, AC capacity Needed is 2 ton or above
The actual tonnage considers a number of factors such as the actual size of the room, ambient climate, amount of light that enters the room, area and direction of windows, the floor on which your room is situated, number of people occupying the room and the number of lights and computers in the room.
2. Split or Window AC?
- Split AC is better when it comes to cooling efficiency.
- Split AC is less noisy as the unit is installed outside your room.
- Window AC is less expensive and easy to install and maintain.
- The regular service and gas fill is more expensive for split AC.
- Leakage Issue: In case of a Split AC; I have observed that water tips from the air unit during high humidity. This is caused as droplets are formed right on the face of blower.
3. Compressor: The most essential component of an AC is its compressor. Primarily, these are of three types—reciprocating, rotary and scroll. Reciprocating compressors are usually used in small to medium systems, such as car ACs, and are bulky and noisy. Rotary units are compact and less noisy, while scroll compressors are the quietest and most efficient of the three. However, the last two are more expensive and are also difficult to repair.
4. Energy Efficiency and Star Rating: A unit with a higher star rating is more expensive than the one with fewer stars.However, it will also consume less electricity and cut down on power consumption while saving energy and being environment-friendly. In India, an AC runs for around 252 days on an average. The BEE rates appliances from 1 to 5 stars. A 5 star AC is the most energy efficient and consumes the lowest energy while conserving energy and drastically reducing your electricity bills.But you should consider a 5 star rated product only when the consumption is extremely high.
5. Inverter AC Vs normal split AC : The motor of inverter AC compressor has a variable speed whereas the speed of non-inverter AC compressor is fixed which means it will operate either at full or minimum speed.
- Environment-friendly : Inverter AC compressor does not work at full capacity all the time and adjusts the speed according to the room temperature hence reducing the electrical consumption by around 40% and higher energy saving as compared to non-inverter AC.
- Noiseless operation : The compressor of inverter AC offers steady continous cooling and does not turn on and off all the time resulting in quiet operation.
- Faster operation : Inverter AC operates on variable speed compressor rather than at a fixed speed and runs at full power only when required which ensures faster cooling or heating of room.
- Longer Lifespan : Inverter AC uses less power leading to lesser wear and tear and longer life as compared to non-inverter AC.
Top 5 Best Selling Air-Conditioners are :
- Voltas 1.2 Ton 5 Star 155 CY Split Air Conditioner
- Voltas 1.5 Ton 5 Star 185 CY Split Air Conditioner
- Voltas 1.5 Ton 5 Star 185 Ly Window Air Conditioner
- Daikin 1.5 Ton Inverter FTKP50PRV16 Split Air Conditioner
- Sansui 1.5 Ton 3 Star BEE Rating 2017 Inverter AC
Voltas AC models are quite good for both residential and industrial purposes. They provide great cooling and heating solutions and make sure that their air conditioning units are energy efficient and environment-friendly. For premium and highly efficient ACs, Daikin and Hitachi are the top most AC brands to look out for. Daikin ACs are highly energy efficient, have strong air flow and their compact and sleek design equipped with advanced filters and environment-friendly refrigerant gas make them a great buy by the consumers. Even Hitachi window and split ac models are built with latest technology and equipped with hi-tech features like anti-bacterial Koukin filter to provide fresh and pure air and auto climate technology to provide comfort and convenience to the consumer in any type of weather condition. In case you want to explore the brands that are active in this market and want to select an AC that fits your budget, you can choose from a wide range of the most sought after ACs.
Before buying any AC, you should read its reviews and feedback given by other users to get first-hand experience. The best time to buy an air-conditioner is the off-season i.e, the time between winter and summers in spring when the retail store owners wants to clear their old stock and old models and sell them at huge discounts. For instance, air conditioners are significantly cheaper after summer months, while heaters, woollens, blankets, etc., are available at lower prices in spring. You can also save by availing of various festive discounts being offered during diwali, christmas and other special holidays.
For less power bills, you can also use air-coolers for first few months when weather is less humid. In humid and rainy weather, they will not be effective at all and get replaced by ACs. For wide range of air-coolers and lowest online price, refer our Air Cooler section.
For further assistance, you can also refer our AIR-COOLER BUYING GUIDE.