Thinking of adding Airconditioning?

There comes a certain point when temperatures rise to an uncomfortable level and you realize you need airconditioning (A/C). Maybe it is only for the bedroom or maybe you want it in living areas. When you start looking at A/c units, seriously consider one of the new inverter technology units. Old style A/c units simply cycle on and off. For example when you set the temperature at 23C, the unit internally has a set of parameters it follows to keep you close to that set point, but the room never stays at a constant 23C. The internal parameters turn the compressor on and it will run at full speed till the desired temperature is met, sensors on the A/c unit sample the temperature and the compressor shuts down when the set point is met. The fan continues to blow air over the cooling coils, but the air slowly starts warming up, since the compressor is not running. The sensors on the A/C unit sampling the temperature allow the air to reach a certain point and the compressor turns on again.  This would be like having a car with an on off switch, in place of the gas pedal. You could be close to the desired speed, but never actually maintain it, as you would be either accelerating or slowing done.

Now there is a solution to the problem, Inverter A/C units. Inverter type A/C units have constant run motors. However, unlike the stop start cycling of old style A/C units, inverter units run continuously, but the motor speeds up and slows down as required to maintain a constant room temperature. Just like using the gas pedal to control an accurate speed in your car, goodbye to warm / cold fluctuations in room temperatures. The advantage of the inverter technology is increased efficiency, which means lower CFE bills for a better cooling effect, component life is longer, due to the elimination of constant stop start cycles and it eliminates power surges in the household wiring for the same reasons.

When it comes time to add or buy new units, remember size matters. If you buy too small a unit it will have to run harder and faster (inverter type) to keep the room at the set temperature. If you buy one that is way too big, it will not run at peak efficiency, will use more electricity and perhaps more importantly here, it will not remove all the excess humidity. There are numerous A/C size calculators if you do a quick Google search, so do your homework first.

One last thing, people always think 220 Volt units use less electricity, than 110 volt units. This is simply not true, electrical usage is measured in Kilowatt hours, 1 kilowatt equals 1000 watts, notice there is no mention of voltage. The only advantage of 220V is the size of the wire needed to do the same job is reduced and any potential line loss ( P=V*I and Ploss=I^2*R ) is also reduced, but line loss over household distances is almost nothing.

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