Window AC / August 24, 2018 / Aubrette Dumoulin
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.
The most commonly used air conditioners are window air conditioners. This is due mostly to the fact that they are the cheapest alternative when it comes to cooling our homes. But there are other reasons also. For example they install in a window out of the way. Install it and forget it. These units are also available with electric heat options. Window air conditioners were once so noisy that they were nicknamed window bangers. This term was very accurate and well deserved. However todays window air conditioners are very different from the ones many of us learned to hate.
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.