Window AC / August 29, 2018 / Lundy Brochu
One sees a similar box for a wall air conditioner. Naturally people assume they are the same. But they arent and this article will explain why. The two types share some characteristics. Both span the dividing line from inside to outside allowing all components to be housed in a single box. Therefore both utilize both inside and outside air to perform. Both are designed to condition a single room. But there are differences. Windows are thin and the sleeve for a window unit is designed to take advantage of this. It sits on the window sill with the window closed onto the case to seal the top.
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.
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.