Window AC / August 27, 2018 / Francoise Salmons
If you live in a college dorm studio apartment or a one-to-two bedroom apartment a window air conditioner is probably your best bet for keeping cool during the summer months. Unlike a central air conditioner a window unit can cost under $200 and will do an excellent job keeping your place cool during the dog days of summer. A window air conditioner - as the name suggests - sits on your window in a semi-permanent installation. This type of unit is designed to work straight out of the box and requires minimal hassle when installing to the window. Basically you attach the unit to your windowsill and then close the window down on top of it.
So what you should do? The best thing to do is to check out the sound levels on your window unit before you make your purchase. All air conditioners come with labels specifying the decibels generated by the unit. A high number means a loud machine. For example a unit with a rating of 50 Decibels is 10 times louder than one rated 40 Decibels. The smartest thing to do is to go to a big box store like Target or Walmart and listen to an air conditioner before you buy it. Even if you are looking at a different brand it is important to get a sense of how loud the Decibel ratings are for you. You can do this best by listening to different ac units running.
The answer is It depends on the wall thickness. Sleeve specifications for some window air conditioner manufacturers include the maximum wall thickness before it will cover part of the louvers. For example Amanas 18000 BTU models have a max of 8.5 inches. If the wall thickness is at or below that these models can be used in as a wall air conditioner without adversely affecting function. So whats the problem if the wall covers a little of the louvers? Two things: 1) restriction of air movement and therefore reduced efficiency and 2) these units pull air in very powerfully. Cut wall edges could become loose allowing material to be sucked into the unit and potentially causing damage.