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Choosing a Cooling System
Don't fancy spending another summer sweating in your sauna-like house? Now might be the time to install a cooling system in your home. There are a few options available, so here are some things to consider when choosing to right way to cool down.
Types of cooling system
The three main types of cooling system are:
These can either be portable or ceiling-mounted. Fans are cheap to buy, cheap to run, extremely energy efficient and very quiet. Because they don't actually reduce the temperature of the air, they aren't suitable for very hot climates.
These draw hot air from outside, pass it through a water-moistened filter and then blow it into the house. Evaporative coolers are reasonably inexpensive, can be portable or fixed and are very energy efficient. You need to leave your doors and windows open for them to work effectively. Because evaporative coolers actually increase humidity, they aren't suitable for tropical climates.
These extract heat from the air inside your home and pump it outside. They are the best cooling solution, but also the most expensive to buy and run. Reverse-cycle models will also provide heating in winter.
If your summers aren't sweltering, installing ceiling fans to get the air moving in your home might be enough to cool you down.
In hot, dry climates like Perth and Adelaide, you can use an evaporative cooler to chill out at a fraction of the cost of air conditioning.
How much cooling do you need?
A ducted air conditioner will keep your whole home nice and cold, but if you only need to cool a room or two then a portable air conditioner, evaporative cooler or fan might suffice.
Think about how much space you need cooled. Choosing the wrong sized cooler can result in freezing indoor temperatures, or a huge energy bill at the end of summer.
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