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Choosing an Air Conditioner
Feeling the heat this summer? It might be time to invest in an air conditioning unit. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right system for your home.
Types of air conditioners
There are a few main types of air conditioners:
Small units that can be moved from room to room and plugged into a standard power point as needed. They will keep you cool, but may have trouble cooling an entire room.
These are mounted on a window or external wall and are suitable for cooling small areas.
Consists of an outside compressor and one or two indoor outlets. Great for cooling a few rooms or an open-plan area.
An outside or roof-mounted compressor pumps cool air to all the rooms in your house. Ducted systems are by far the best air conditioner, but have a high setup cost, and must be custom made for your home.
Reverse cycle air conditioners
All of the types listed above are available as reverse cycle systems, which provide heating as well as cooling.
Reverse cycle air conditioners are more expensive, but are worthwhile if your area has hot summers and cold winters.
The size of your air conditioner should be relative to the area it cools. If your system is too small it might waste electricity by running on high all the time. Too large and you'll feel like you're living in a fridge!
Air conditioner energy efficiency
Air conditioners have a star rating, indicating how energy efficient they are. Choosing a more efficient system will save you money in the long run.
Air conditioner noise
Check how noisy your system is before you buy it. A loud air conditioner can annoy both you and your neighbours.
Choose the right airflow
High fan speed will cool a room quickly, but can be very noisy. Look for an air-conditioner with a variety of airflow settings.
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