In Western Australia, where it tends to be hot and humid, choosing the right kind of air conditioner can be a real chore. It’s easy to assume that the bigger your air conditioning system, the faster and better it’ll cool your space.
But thinking this way is not quite correct.
If you get a big air conditioner because your sole basis for getting what you think to be an energy-efficient air conditioner is the size, it will end up cooling the air faster than it can get rid of the humidity. As a result, the air would become damp and clammy — something you wouldn’t want.
So before you purchase an air conditioning unit, read through the below.
Choosing an Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
In choosing an efficient air conditioner, there are certain factors you need to consider.
1. Types of Air Conditioners
There are different kinds of air conditioning systems that are built to work in various living environments. Examples of air conditioning types include the following:
- Central air conditioners (split or packaged air conditioning system)
- Ducted air conditioners
- Window unit air conditioners
- Portable air conditioners
- Inverter air conditioners
- Ductless mini-split system air conditioner units
- WiFi-enabled or smart air conditioners
In Western Australia, for instance, where it’s warm for the greater part of the year, a split or packaged air conditioning system could be the best option. But if installing this is not possible, you may have to consider using a portable air conditioner or a window air conditioner.
2. Types of Air Conditioning Systems to Consider in WA
In choosing an air conditioning system, you need to know first what type of air conditioner is suitable for your area and living space.
In general, reverse-cycle air conditioning systems (such as split and ducted air cons) are the most cost-effective options to heat or cool homes or spaces. But in this guide, the focus will be on split systems, which are the air conditioner of choice in most Australian homes.
To give you an overview of your other options, here are specific air conditioner types:
- Split system air conditioning: This type of air conditioner comprises an indoor and outdoor unit connected together by pipes that contain refrigerant gas. Split systems are ideal for heating or cooling rooms or open-plan areas measuring approximately 60 square metres. Trusting the innovative technology of brands such as Daikin, split system air conditioners are one of the most energy-efficient options now available.
- Multi-split system: This split AC system works just like the single split unit type, except it has one outdoor unit and two or more indoor units. Multi-split systems are suitable for houses with two or three rooms, and in situations where a split unit or ducted system isn’t going to work.
- Ducted system: Ducted air conditioning systems are popular in both business and homes as it offers heating and cooling options, unlike their evaporative air conditioning counterpart. A ducted system is composed of a central unit that’s linked via air ducts to sensors and air outlets in each room or zone in a home.
- Wall or window system: Although not as efficient as a split system air conditioner, wall or window air conditioners can warm or cool a room or space of up to 50 square metres. These are among the most budget-friendly options but are not commonly classed as very efficient.
- Portable unit: While portable air conditioners are movable, they are not that easy to shift based on which room needs cooling at a particular time. Many of these feature a flexible duct that needs to be attached to a window in order to direct the heat outside. They’re one of the cheapest options, but not quite as efficient as a split system air conditioner and are recommended only when you can’t have a built-in unit.
3. Consider Air Conditioner Size
Size, of course, is an essential consideration in choosing the most energy-efficient air conditioner.
Getting a wrong-sized air conditioner could lead to higher energy bills. If you get a ducted or split system air conditioner that’s too small for your space, it will have to run more often to keep your home cool. This will mean not only huge power bills but also faster wear and tear for the different parts of the air conditioning unit.
If you do notice issues with your current system, get in touch with Busselton Refrigeration & Air Conditioning and book one of our specialists for air conditioning repair or servicing.
Choosing the Right-Sized Air Conditioner
There are several guides about air conditioner capacity (size) available online. Of course, you could also get the help of a trusted air conditioning system provider and installer (such as us, Busselton Refrigeration & Air Conditioning) who can recommend the best size for your home cooling needs.
Choosing the right-sized air conditioners for your home, however, entails a more accurate calculation based on several factors:
- Room dimensions: length, width and height
- Room type: bedroom, living room, open-plan living and dining, etc.
- Room layout: Window and glass door size and orientation
- Window treatments: use of shades, drapes or curtains on windows
- Building insulation: walls, ceiling and floor
A room with good insulation and south-facing windows would likely require a lower-capacity air conditioning system, whilst a non- or poorly insulated room with windows facing west is likely to require higher-capacity air conditioners.
As a rule of thumb, it’s better to go for air conditioners with an equal or slightly greater capacity than is required for a space, room or zone.
Qualities of Energy-Efficient Air Conditioners
Many leading brands of air conditioners now have built-in eco-friendly features, such as Daikin air conditioning systems. However, to find the most efficient air conditioners for your home, always look for the following features:
- It doesn’t use toxic refrigerants like hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFC 22).
- It has a two-stage compressor, which uses less energy and comes with a variable speed air handler designed to regulate air circulating in a building. This ensures your comfort without increasing your power consumption.
- It features an energy-efficient matched heating and cooling system for consistent temperatures, superior air quality and better humidity control.
- It comes with a programmable thermostat that you can set to turn off automatically when a room or your home is unoccupied.
Daikin air conditioners tick all the right boxes, whether you choose a split or a ducted air conditioning system. Their innovative residential and commercial air conditioning technology is widely recognised in the industry.
And if you’re keen on saving more energy whilst using your air conditioner, follow these tips:
- Seal all openings tight to prevent hot or cold air from leaking.
- Keep the external AC unit protected from sunlight to prevent it from overheating during summer.
- Get your home checked for proper insulation.
- Opt for solar power as your energy resource.
- Keep your air conditioning system turned off while you’re away and try to limit its use during the daytime.
Keep Cool With a Split System Air Conditioner
Everyone needs some cooling during summer and heating in winter, but people also want to keep their energy consumption low for obvious reasons: sustainability and lower power bills.
Hopefully, with this guide, you can choose the most energy-efficient air conditioner that’s appropriate for your situation.
If you need assistance with finding the right model or have questions regarding how certain air conditioning systems work, please contact the team at Busselton Refrigeration & Air Conditioning.