These days, having an air conditioner is a must, especially for people who live in hot and humid climates. If you’re on the market for a new AC, it’s best not to wait until summer since you’ll find significant discounts in the winter. The process of purchasing a new air conditioner may be difficult and time-consuming due to the numerous brands and types of air conditioners available. Furthermore, each manufacturer advertises key AC characteristics in its unique way, making it difficult to grasp and compare them with others.
This article should help you through the process of buying an AC. You must first determine your budget, then research which sort of air conditioner is best for you, and last calculate the cooling capacity of the air conditioner necessary for your space. Consider how often you’ll use the air conditioner and look at the energy efficiency ratings to save some money every year in terms of electricity bills.
Which Type of AC is Suitable for Your Room:
In the present scenario, there is various type of ACs available in the market? It not only creates confusion but also makes the task difficult to find out the suitable one for your room. First, let’s know about the main three types of AC in short.
1. Split ACs:
An air conditioner of this kind contains an outdoor unit with a compressor and a condenser, as well as one or more indoor units. These indoor units are wall-mounted and come with air blowers. A tube connects the indoor and outdoor units, and refrigerant flows in different ways depending on the kind of usage.
As these indoor units are tiny and compact, each room normally has its own unit, which cools down the space. When compared to some of the other alternatives available, these types of air conditioners are significantly more energy-efficient. Also, ductless mini-splits come with remote control, when combined with a smart AC controller, you can operate them from anywhere with your smartphone.
2. Window Air Conditioner:
The most basic sort of air conditioner is a window air conditioner. It’s a single unit that contains all of the parts and components in one compact box. This type of air conditioner is often hung or placed in a window and connects to a standard electrical socket. It’s handy since you can move it from window to window and runs independently of the home’s HVAC system.
You have to place it in a window or through a hole in the wall, as the name implies. The filter on these air conditioners pulls out, allowing it to clean on a regular basis for maximum AC efficiency. These air conditioners include onboard controls and may also have a remote control.
Window air conditioners are ideal for cooling a single room or a small area since they come in a variety of sizes.
3. Portable Air Conditioner:
Window air conditioners and portable air conditioners are similar. They are likewise contained within a single unit with all of its components encased within, with the exception that a portable air conditioner is a free-standing device that can be moved from room to room. It just requires a power outlet to operate and access to a window through which it vents out the air via the funnel.
As a portable unit is for indoor use, the evaporator fan is always running to remove the moisture that has accumulated inside the unit.
If you need temporary space cooling or if installing a window or split air conditioner isn’t feasible, consider a portable air conditioner. They’re really useful, and you can utilize the smaller ones in kennels or restrooms. Single-hose portable air conditioners take in air from within a room and exhaust it outside. Alternatively, a dual-hose system sucks air from the outside through one hose, cools the compressor, and then exhausts the air through the other hose.
Room Size and What Tonnage of AC You Need for Effective Cooling:
The bigger the room, the higher the tonnage required to cool it effectively. You must first determine the size of the space you are attempting to cool, and then determine the optimal AC capacity required to efficiently cool down the room. In India, we measure air conditioner’s capacity in tonnes, however, the BTU (British Thermal Unit) rating is a more accurate way to determine how quickly an air conditioner can chill a space. The BTU rating also shows the energy efficiency of an air conditioner.
1 KW/Hr = 3,412 BTU
12,000 BTU = 1 Ton
You can refer to the chart below to determine what tonnage is appropriate for your space.
Inverter and Non-Inverter Which One You Should Get and Why:
ACs are further divided into two categories: inverter and non-inverter. Inverter air conditioners are often more energy-efficient, but they are also more costly.
The compressor of a non-inverter AC runs on full power until the room’s temperature reaches the desired temperature, and then it stops working. This start-stop procedure not only puts a sudden load on the power supply but also consumes more power. An air conditioner using inverter technology will operate constantly but only use the amount of electricity necessary to maintain the target temperature. It changes its capacity dependent on the cooling requirements of the room it is cooling. As a result, substantially less power is drawn and fewer units of energy are consumed.
Even though an air conditioner with Inverter Technology varies its capacity dependent on the space’s needs, it is critical to install the correct size air conditioner in a room. Before you buy, make sure you check the size of the room and the capacity of the air conditioner.
Inverter Air Conditioner Benefits: Better energy-efficient, silent, cools faster and has a longer life span.
Non-inverter Air Conditioner Benefits: They are less expensive than inverter ACs.
Now, here you have to make a choice of what you want. Both types of AC will cool down your space. Inverter Air Conditioners are much more energy-efficient while costing a little more. We suggest you go with inverter ACs they significantly consume less energy and only costs slightly more.
Copper Coil vs Aluminium Coil Which One Should You Prefer:
How coil works: The coil transmits the heat from the interior air to the outside air. So, the vital heat transmission is done by the coil only. The whole process is carried out in 3 steps. Let’s know the science behind it.
The coolant in the evaporation coils absorbs the heat from the room air flowing over it and evaporates (changes from liquid to gas) inside the coil only. This procedure cools the air inside the room, which is then directed back into the room. This whole process is done through the indoor unit of the AC.
After that, the gaseous refrigerant is compressed with the help of a compressor and fed through condensation coils, where it condenses and releases heat into the atmosphere. This heat is generated because of high pressure inside the compressor and coil. With the aid of exhaust fans, this heat is expelled out. This process is done in the outdoor unit of an AC.
Because of high pressure and compression, the gas inside the coil condensed into a liquid. The exhaust fan only can’t cool down the liquid effectively. So, the liquid is passed through a certain type of valve where sudden pressure change occurs inside the liquid because of the shape of the valve, and the liquid converts into gas. That’s how the coolant further reduces its temperature and turns into gas.
This idea is the same in all forms of HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) systems; the only difference is the scale of the system.
Difference between Aluminium coil and Copper coil:
Copper was perhaps the most favored material for creating these coils. For many years, most companies used only copper to create the coils in HVAC systems because of its numerous advantages, but this rendered air conditioners costly and out of reach for most people. General Electronics took a move in the air conditioning sector that changed everything around 1970. They began making coils out of aluminium. The cost of employing aluminium was significantly lower than that of copper, lowering the subsequent prices of air conditioners and making them affordable to most of the common people.
Aluminium Coil vs. Copper Coil: What’s the Difference?
- Properties of heat transfer: It is essential that the metal has strong heat transfer qualities because heat transfer happens through coils only. The heat transfer coefficient of copper is greater than that of aluminium. As a result, copper is a superior heat exchanger over aluminium.
- Price: Copper is more expensive than aluminium, which raises the cost of manufacturing and, as a result, the price of an air conditioner. Aluminium has been the preferred material for manufacturers to minimize the unit cost of making air conditioners.
However, to reduce the cost of air conditioning with copper coils, thinner and thinner copper coils are currently being manufactured.
- Corrosion: Corrosion is a big factor in how long an air conditioner lasts. Corrosion destroys the coils, causing heat transfer slower and leaks to occur. As a result, corrosion protection for the coils is highly required.
Corrosion damages are more common in humid regions. A non-conducting layer forms over the coils as a result of the corrosion, lowering the heat exchange capacity. Many new solutions are also there to prevent coils from corrosion and extend the life of air conditioners. (Tip: When purchasing an air conditioner, look for corrosion prevention strategies such as coil coatings.) In this case also, copper is the superior metal (relatively noble metal) to aluminium.
Efficiency: EER, ISEER, and BEE Star Rating:
The government has made it essential for all air conditioner and refrigerator manufacturers to display a BEE star rating on all air conditioners and refrigerators to give consumers an indication of how much energy they would consume. In other words, a star rating indicates how efficient your air conditioner or refrigerator is in terms of energy use. Let us discuss various energy ratings below
EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio):
- The Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) is calculated by dividing the quantity of heat extracted per hour by the air conditioner’s electrical usage.
- EER is the ratio of cooling capability in BTU per hour to power input in watts.
- Let me give you an illustration. If a 10,000 BTU air conditioner consumes 1000 watts of power, the EER value is 10 (10,000/1000=10).
- If the same air conditioner (10000 BTU) uses 1200 watts per hour, the EER is 10000/1200) = 8.33. So now you know that a higher EER indicates more energy efficiency, similar to BEE Star ratings.
- EER figures are no longer shown on air conditioners. Rather, they display the ISEER value. The explanation for this we will discuss later. As a result, EER is currently mostly a theoretical concept.
- Until 2019, here is the relationship between EER and star rating.
SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio):
- The SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) is similar to the EER in that it takes seasonal fluctuation into account. The reason for this is that in India, the seasons are not uniform throughout the country.
- For example, in Delhi, a 10X15 room may require 1 tonne of air conditioning. In Himachal, though, you may only need a 0.5-ton air conditioner to chill the same space. As a result, seasonal variations are large.
- As a result, SEER calculates the SEER rating by adding a seasonal element to the EER. Depending on the season, such factor value might be 0.5, 0.75, 1,2, or anything else. SEER figures are now replaced with ISEER ratings.
ISEER (Indian Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio):
- The ISEER is the ratio of the total yearly amount of heat that an air conditioner or refrigerator can remove from the interior air when operating in active mode for cooling to the total annual amount of energy used by the equipment over the same period.
- EER, SEER, and ISEER are all the same thing. However, ISEER takes into account two elements, as illustrated below.
- Cooling Seasonal Energy Consumption: CESC is the total amount of energy consumed by the air conditioner or refrigerator over the course of a year while it is turned on, independent of the cooling method used.
- Cooling Seasonal Total Load: The entire amount of heat load removed by an air conditioner or refrigerator every year when it is operational, independent of the cooling process, is referred to as CSTL.
- As a result, ISEER = CSTL/CSEC.
- The ISEER number on your air conditioner’s box estimates that you’ll use it for 1600 hours per year. The performance of the air conditioner may fluctuate if you use it for longer periods of time.
Features to Consider While Buying an AC:
- Auto Start: Some air conditioners do not automatically resume after a power interruption. But an air conditioner with an auto-start feature may resume itself automatically with the temperature set before the power cut.
- Dehumidification: Few ACs have a dehumidification mode that lowers the humidity. If you reside in a coastal area or somewhere with excessively high humidity, this function is essential for that region.
- Four-Way Swing: Most air conditioners include a two-way swing to distribute air across the room. While it may not make a significant impact on the AC’s ability to chill the room. Some air conditioners include a four-way swing, which distributes air horizontally as well as vertically, making it easier to fine-tune the air circulation. If airflow to a certain area of the room is vital to you, this is an essential function to have.
- Smart Features, App Control, and Wi-Fi Connectivity: Some high-end ACs come with smart capabilities like Wi-Fi (or Bluetooth) connectivity. These capabilities enable ACs to be connected to your smartphone or web service, allowing you to manage the temperature even while you are not in the room or at home. For example, you may program the air conditioner to turn on when you get home, ensuring that the room is already at your preferred temperature when you arrive.
- Sleep Timer: The sleep timer option is very useful to switch off the air conditioning after a certain duration of time, lowering energy costs. This function can automatically switch off your AC whenever needed without doing anything.
- Turbo Mode: Turning on this option set the air conditioner to run at maximum power, which cools the space faster but consumes more energy. You may, however, need to use it on occasion.
- Auto Clean: The auto-clean feature cleans and dries the inside of the air conditioner’s indoor unit automatically. It is necessary to clean the interior unit, filters, and exterior exchanger regularly to keep the air conditioner in good working condition.
Best Air conditioner Brand in India 2023:
There are so many AC companies in the market having their custom features. Few trustworthy companies are mentioned below to make the selection procedure easier. Now you have to look at the rating as it’s always preferable to buy a 5-star rated AC. The more rate means more efficient and more eco-friendly as well as energy-saving that will reduce your electricity bill.
This company is a highly diversified Japanese manufacturing conglomerate with approximately 1,000 subsidiaries, including 335 overseas companies. Hitachi Home & Life Solutions Inc. in Japan founded Hitachi Home and Life Solutions (India) Ltd. as a subsidiary in 1984. The company is one of India’s top air–conditioning enterprises, with exports to SAARC, the Middle East, and a few other nations across the world.
With an annual turnover of over 4326 crores (566 million USD), a network of 32 offices, five contemporary production facilities, and two new state-of-the-art facilities under construction, Blue Star is also India’s leading air conditioning and commercial refrigeration company.
Daikin Airconditioning India Pvt. Ltd. is a private Ltd. company in India. DAIPL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Daikin Industries Ltd., a global leader in the production of commercial and residential air conditioning systems. The company provides a comprehensive selection of energy-efficient air conditioning solutions to Indian consumers, backed by exceptional technology.
O General AC:
Japanese air conditioner firm founded the O-General in India in 1971. The o-general air conditioner has a solid design and is one of the most popular brands for home cooling.
Voltas is a Tata-owning home appliance brand, founded in 1954, and is one of the most popular air conditioning brands in the country. With varying tonnage and energy efficiency options, the company offers cost-effective AC solutions for households and offices.
There are other good AC brands available in the market such as LG, Panasonic, Samsung, Godrej, Carrier, Sanyo, and Whirlpool.
Now, we can hope that the process of buying an AC has become much easier for you as you have the required details for choosing from thousands of options available.
Is inverter AC better than normal AC?
Ans: Yes. By far the most energy-efficient is the inverter air conditioner. It uses less energy and runs more smoothly than a fixed-speed air conditioner. Also, It is environmentally friendly because of its variable-speed compressor. When operating, the inverter air conditioner is relatively quiet.
What is the disadvantage of inverter AC?
Ans: The only disadvantage is its slightly higher price. Inverter air conditioners are generally 20% to 25% more expensive than standard air conditioners of the same rating.
Is the inverter AC need a stabilizer?
Ans: That depends on the company. Most modern ACs don’t need a stabilizer. If AC does not have an inbuilt stabilizer, then We suggest you use a stabilizer if you live in an area where voltage varies frequently.
Does the inverter AC have an inbuilt stabilizer?
Ans: Most of the current inverter ACs come with a built-in stabilizer. We suggest you refer AC manual or company catalog to make sure your selected AC has a built-in stabilizer.
Which type of air conditioner is best?
Ans: Depends on the requirement of that particular space. But split AC is very common and can be a good choice.
Should I go for a bigger tonnage? Will it cool better?
Ans: No, as it depends on the room size. If you buy something beyond your requirement, it will waste money as well as energy.
Should I go for non-inverter AC?
Ans: You should go for an inverter AC as there is not much price difference between the two.