Your Definitive Guide To Buying An Air-Conditioner

Pointers to help you choose an AC that is energy-efficient and meets your cooling demands

Poonam Boro Updated: May 27, 2020 20:19:22 IST
Your Definitive Guide To Buying An Air-Conditioner Photo: Shutterstock

Hot days without an air-conditioner (AC) can be an unbearable thought for most of us. But a wrong choice can make you sweat more with soaring electricity bills and unmet cooling demands. As ACs with newer features hit the market almost every other day, here are a few factors you must consider before making a decision:

Energy efficiency

An AC is an energy-guzzler and adds considerably to your electricity bill. That’s why it is only wise to choose one that is energy efficient as well as provides optimum cooling.

When is an AC energy-efficient? The Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) uses a rating standard for air-conditioners called Indian Seasonal Energy Efficient Ratio or ISEER. The ratings, which range from 1 to 5, denote the energy efficiency of the AC—a higher star denotes lesser energy consumption.

You can also look for an inverter AC, which is known to be energy-efficient. Unlike a traditional AC where the compressor constantly switches on and off to adjust to the temperature change in a room, a process that consumes a lot of power, an inverter AC automatically controls the speed of the compressor to adjust to the temperature, thereby saving some power. 

Capacity matters

Choosing an air-conditioner with the right capacity is key to effective cooling in a room. Generally, a bigger room would need an AC with higher tonnage (the rate at which an AC can cool a room). A 100-125 square feet room would require a 1 ton AC, a 150-200 sq ft room would need a 1.5 ton AC while a 200 sq ft room and above would demand a 2 ton AC.

Check the noise levels

Window ACs are usually noisier than split ACs. Always check the noise levels (in decibels) of the AC you plan to purchase—you don’t want the AC noise to wake you up in the middle of the night. 

Other features to consider

There are a couple of other factors you can consider while zeroing on an AC:

1. Check for an energy-saver switch, which can switch off the AC fan when the compressor is off, thereby helping you save electricity.

2. A sleep mode will ensure that the AC’s temperature setting is automatically raised so that the room doesn’t turn frosty and you sleep comfortably.

3. Look for oscillating vents which cool the room evenly.

4. A timer lets you control the unit, turning it on and off at a preset time—it can ensure your room is cool before you step in.

After-sales service

ACs require regular servicing even if they aren’t malfunctioning. Be sure to choose a brand, which offers after-sales service, either for free during the warranty period or at an affordable rate.

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