How Much Energy Is Used By Air Conditioning?

Over recent years, as technology has changed and progressed so have air conditioning units. This means that the cooling devices are now more emergency efficient than ever. Whilst this is good  news it does mean that there is no definitive answer to the question ‘how much energy is used by air conditioning?’. There are lots of factors that could affect how much energy your air conditioner users, although probably none more so than how old (or new) your unit is.

How Air Conditioning Units Work

When you break it down an air conditioning unit doesn’t work all that differently to a fridge. Basically inside their are pumps and a series of tubes that create a cooling system. There is a set of serpentine tubing inside, usually made of copper that winds into two coils – an evaporator and a condenser. The evaporator coil cools the room and the condenser coil releases the heat that is created by the machine running and using up energy.

Of course, you don’t really need to know how an air conditioning unit works most of the time. As long as you can switch it on and it works as it should then that is really all you need to worry about.

The Energy That Is Used

When it comes to looking at how much energy is actually used, it can get quite complex. Most units that you buy now will have an energy efficiency rating so this will at least give you an idea of how much energy it will take and how expensive it will be to run.

If you look at the actual energy rating for an air conditioning unit you’ll see that they’re rated by BTU (British Thermal Units) and how many of these it can remove in an hour – with 12,000 BTU being the equivalent of a ton. The energy efficiency rating you’ll see us measured by look at the BTU per hour and dividing this by the number of watts the unit takes to run. You are then left with an EER (Energy efficiency ratio) which is used to decide how efficient it is.

Cutting Down The Energy Used

Of course if you do have an air conditioning unit, that doesn’t mean that you have to pay over the top to run it. As long as you run it in the right way, you can help to keep the costs down as low as possible. One of the biggest factors of this is only using it when you need to. Generally speaking these units cool the air quickly, so there is no need to leave them on in anticipation of it getting too warm – wait until you actually need it. Of course you can also take steps to stop rooms from getting to warm, such as closing curtains and blinds to prevent direct sunlight beaming through the window and making the room extra hot.

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