Window AC / June 13, 2018 / Babette Arsenault.
Side panels fill the gaps on the sides. These are also very thin so most of the sleeve is uncovered and outside. This allows for placement of ventilation louvers on the sides and top allowing free movement of air. This is the primary difference between the two types. The wide availability of louver space allows the unit to move a lot of air and this means window units can be quite powerful up to 3 tons or 36000 BTU. So window A/Cs can be effective for very large rooms. In contrast a wall air conditioner sleeve is designed for a hole through the wall. Walls vary substantially in thickness.
How much depends on each situation. When considering your options for air conditioning installation you need to get prices for everything and then decide what type of unit will work the best for you. In another article I will talk about when to consider using a ductless split type air conditioning unit. They are also another possibility to consider. Window air conditioners are small units made to fit a standard window space. They work like any other air conditioner and they come in different BTU (British Thermal Units) capacities to cool rooms of different sizes.
A wall with simple sheet type siding may be only 6 inches thick whereas a brick or stone wall can be much thicker. So wall air conditioner sleeves have ventilation louvers only in the back to avoid louvers being covered by the wall edges. This limits the amount of ventilation space available in turn limiting how powerful the unit can be. Wall air conditioners generally dont get much over 14000 BTU depending on the brand. So are they interchangeable? This question usually arises when someone needs a lot of cooling power in a room without suitable windows for a window unit.
Today window air conditioners are becoming less popular then wall split-systems. And it happens for several reasons. These air conditioning systems are indeed much noisier than split-systems and they significantly reduce the daylight area. But besides some disadvantages window air conditioners have decided advantages. The main advantage is reasonable price. Another important factor is easiness in installation and relatively small amount of Freon in the system. Modern device models provide intensive ventilation and air conditioning and are characterized by economical operation.