Window AC / June 8, 2018 / Babette Arsenault.
Window air conditioners come in various sizes and it is important to choose the one that best fits the size of your room and needs of the user. The first thing to consider is to the rooms size. Using an climate control unit calculator or using the Energy Star chart for choosing a properly sized cooling appliance. For the average 150-250 square foot room youll need a climate control unit that has a capacity of 6000 BTUs. If you have rooms that flow into one another with archways or open doorways youll need to include the square footage of the adjoining room when calculating the capacity necessary to cool the area. Outside of square footage it is important to consider the climate of the room you wish to cool with an air conditioner.
If there is no central hot air heating then the installation of central air conditioning can be much more difficult. Many homes that do not have hot air heat also do not have the room to install ductwork. This would eliminate this possibility. If you are in this category you should get a professional to look at your situation to see if central air conditioning can be done. If it is the room available is to enough to do a good job and get large enough ductwork installed then do not force the issue and go another option. Ductless split type air conditioning may be your best option.
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.
If you choose to use a window air conditioner than you should also look for a place that it can be secured and placed in a room that you will not be sleeping in. As you can tell by now I am not a big fan of window air conditioners. They do have a place for some people. However you do need to be aware of the problems that you may encounter with them. The low initial cost can be offset by the fact that they typically do not last as long as a central air conditioner. Central air conditioning will last much longer be quieter during operation be more efficient be more secure but the initial cost will be higher.