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Wednesday, 14 Apr 2021

How to Choose the Best Air Conditioner in 2020

three split ac outdoor units on the wall

three split ac outdoor units on the wall

With the advent of global warming, the summers in India have become unbearable, especially in the northern region. This is why people think twice before butting going out in the scorching heat. However, fortunately, we have a device which is capable of battling this blazing heat and keeping us cool all the time. Yes, you guessed it right. It’s the magical Air Conditioner or in short, ac. So, you don’t need to worry anymore. Just chill out, do your work and leave the rest to your air conditioners. Let us see How to Choose the Best Air Conditioner?

Today, the AC market has exploded with more than a hundred brands with over ten thousand ACs sold every day. This makes it all the more confusing for the buyer as they have to choose from a plethora of options. But don’t worry, we at homelectrics have just got what you need. Our AC buying guide covers all the topics you should know before buying an air conditioner. Should you be looking at the best refrigerators or the best washing machines, then we can help you with that too.

Note: It is recommended that before purchasing an Air conditioner you must go through our detailed buying guide for air Conditioners. Our guide will provide you with all the important technical knowledge you need. Also, you will get to know about various features and latest technologies used in 2020.

Let us take a look at what factors one should consider before buying an Air conditioner.

If you are looking to buy an Air Conditioner, You must read our list of Top 10 Best Air Conditioners In India (2020)

How do Air Conditioners work

An AC consists of five main components; Refrigerant, condenser coil, Evaporation coil, Compressor and Expansion valve. For a split air conditioner, the compressor and condenser are located on the outside part of the air conditioner. The refrigerant goes to the compressor in the form of low-pressure gas. The compressor compresses the refrigerant and thus it becomes hot. Now the refrigerant gas goes to the condenser and cools down. When the refrigerant leaves the condenser it has become liquid due to an increase in pressure. The liquid refrigerant enters the evaporator where it’s pressure starts to drop. Now the refrigerant is again converted to a gas. As this happens heat is absorbed from the surrounding air.

The refrigerant escapes the evaporator it has become a low-pressure cold gas. This chilled gas now returns to the compressor and this process repeats again and again. The air Conditioner absorbs air through the went which cools the gas in the evaporator. In this manner, the heat is removed and cool air is blown out by the ducts back to the room.

Types of Air Conditioners

On the basis of the location of the compressor and blower air Conditioners are classified into three broad categories:

  • Window Ac
  • Split Ac
  • Portable Ac

Window Air Conditioner

Window Air Conditioner consists of a single unit in which both the compressor and blower are present within it. As the name suggests it can be only installed in rooms with a window frame with the blower side facing the room.

Window air Conditioner is economical and their installation is relatively easy. However, on the downside, these air conditioners make a loud noise because the entire system is fitted at the window. Also, it is not as aesthetically pleasing as split air Conditioners.

Voltas 1.5 Ton 3-Star Window AC (https://amzn.to/2nT1d2b)

Split Air Conditioner

This type of air conditioner is a combination of two units. The indoor unit is mounted on the wall and the outdoor unit is kept outside of the home. The outdoor unit consists of compressor and condenser coils while the indoor unit consists of the blower. Both these units are connected by a connecting pipe. The air is absorbed by the compressor and is cooled. This cooled air is thrown into the room by the blower.

Split AC is perfect for bedrooms as it makes very little noise as both the compressor and condenser are located outside. Also, there is no need for a window frame for their installation. Rather, they can be installed on the walls. Combing these with modern Smart LED TVs can your room stylish and classy. But, they have some disadvantages too. Firstly, they are more expensive than window ACs. And secondly, due to the presence of two units(indoor and outdoor), they are not suitable for multi-storey buildings.

Godrej 1.5 Ton 3-Star Split AC (https://amzn.to/2mSj3BM)

Window AC vs Split AC

Window Air ConditionerSplit Air Conditioner
It consists of a single unitIt consists of two units (Indoor and Outdoor)
Window frame is required for installationIndoor unit is mounted on the wall and outdoor unit is placed outside
Noise produced is a bit loud Noise produced is less as compared to window ac
Easy service and maintainance Its maintainance requires technichians
It costs around Rs.15000-30000It costs around Rs. 20000-50000

Portable Air Conditioner

As the name suggests, this type of AC can be carried anywhere in the house. This is most suitable for houses where there is not sufficient space for installing a window or split ac. Also, people who travel often or live in a rented house will benefit the most from it.

The installation of a portable air conditioner is quite easy and it does not require a technician. A plastic pipe called air hose comes bundled with the AC. Just attach one end of the air hose to the AC and place the other end outside the window with the help of the provided window kit.

As it is a relatively new product, its market is small and thus, it is quite expensive. But, owing to their ease of use, these ACs are going to become a must-have in the near future.

Blue Star 1 Ton Portable AC (https://amzn.to/2pf50XM)

a split air conditioner

Inverter AC vs Non-Invertor AC

What is an Inverter AC? For starters, Inverter AC runs on inverter technology. This technology is based on converting AC (Alternating Current) into DC (Direct Current) which helps in controlling the compressor speed of the air conditioner. The compressor motor of non-inverter ac alternates between two fixed positions, ON and OFF. When the motor is switched ON, the AC starts reducing the room temperature. As soon as the set temperature is reached, the compressor switches OFF. This cycle continues and cooling is produced. This means that the compressor runs at a constant speed. This continuous fluctuation of compressor motor results in higher electricity consumption.

However, in Inverter ACs, the compressor motor is always in the ON state. When you switch on the AC, the compressor motor operates at high speed to reach the desired temperature. After that, the motor speed is reduced. But, it is still in the ON state. Then again as the room temperature increases, the compressor motor speed also increases. This cycle continues and thus the compressor works at variable speeds. Since there is no ON OFF fluctuation taking place, the Inverter ACs consume less electricity than their non-inverter counterparts.

Voltas 1.5 Ton 3-Star Inverter AC (https://amzn.to/2nGpska)

Blue Star 1 Ton 3-Star Split AC (https://amzn.to/2n0hd1W)

AC capacity and Size

How much ton AC do I need? This is the most important question before buying an AC. If you know the right capacity of the AC you need, the buying process becomes simpler. However, it is easier said than done. In India, the AC capacity is measured in tonnage. The higher the tonnage, the more powerful the ac would be and hence, the more electricity it will consume. That said, now let us try to find out how to determine the AC capacity as per our needs.

The capacity of the AC depends upon the room size where it is installed. The size of the room is given by its square foot area. Here we summarize the relation between room size and capacity of the AC.

Room size and capacity

  • 0-80 sq ft – requires 0.75 ton
  • 80-120 sq ft – requires 1 ton
  • 120-190 sq ft – requires 1.5 ton
  • 190-300 sq ft – requires 2 ton

Voltas 1 Ton 5-Star Window AC (https://amzn.to/2oBCKhF)

Samsung 1.5 Ton 3-Star Split AC (https://amzn.to/2mVA51Y)

Carrier 2 Ton 3-Star Split AC (https://amzn.to/2ovV9fV)

an outdoor unit of a split ac

Copper Coil vs Aluminum Coil

In air conditioners, there is a need to convert gas refrigerant into liquid form and then vice versa. This conversion is essential for the cooling process and it is achieved with the help of metal coils. There are mainly two types of coils used in ACs; Copper coils and Aluminium coils. Among them, copper coils are better than aluminium coils in terms of transmission of heat, durability and sturdiness. Also, copper is more resistant to corrosion than aluminium.

Even after the above-mentioned advantages, ACs with aluminium coils are still available in the market. The main reason is that aluminium is much cheaper than copper. This is due to the fact that as compared to aluminium, it is very difficult to bend copper. Thus, it takes about 2-3 times copper to make a coil the same in size and shape as an aluminium one.

Energy Efficiency Ratings

The Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) has devised a method to rate the energy efficiency of appliances. These ratings are called Indian Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (ISEER). The appliances are given a star rating of 1 to 5, with 1 being the least efficient and 5 being the most efficient. The higher the ratings, the less the energy consumption and the more you save. As a result, the 4-5 star ACs are the most expensive.

Buying a 4-5 star air conditioner can cost you more initially but, in the long term, it will significantly reduce your electricity bill. Thus, somehow offsetting their extra price as compared to lower-rated models.

Earlier Inverter ACs did not have an ISEER rating because their compressor works at variable speeds as mentioned above. But, from 2018 onwards it is mandatory to give star ratings to them. That said, generally, a 2-3 star inverter AC is more energy-efficient than a 5-star non-inverter AC.

Note: The ISEER ratings change every 2-3 years as fridges become more energy-efficient than ever. Thus a 5-star AC from 2016 would be no more efficient than a 3-4 star AC in 2020. So, it would be better to purchase the latest models.

Important features in air conditioners

Anti-Bacteria Technology: Nowadays, ACs come with an inbuilt anti-bacteria filter which helps in removal of bacteria, germs, pollen, and other dust particles. These filters prevent the deposition of dust and ensure a long life for the ac.
4D Airflow Technology: Earlier, ACs would come with two way (up and down) swing technology. But, now ACs from LG, Hitachi, BlueStar comes with four-way (up, down, left and right) swing or 4D Airflow Technology. This helps in regulating the airflow and ensuring better cooling in the room.
AC Control By Smartphone: Imagine sitting in the balcony and wishing the AC would turn on before you reach your room. Hitachi’s Wifi Control and Wifi Direct technology enable you to do just that. Moreover, you can control the temperature, modes, and much more with just a tap on your smartphone.
Inbuilt heater AC: In today’s market, all-weather ACs with inbuilt heaters are becoming quite a trend. With them, you won’t need a heater anymore. By just a press of a button, your AC will get converted into a heater in no time.
Eco-friendly AC: Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are the most commonly used fridge refrigerants in India. But, they are a great contributor to global warming and are thus pose a threat to the environment. Therefore several new environment-friendly refrigerants are coming to the scene. Some of them include R-32, R290 and R600A.

a building with multiple air conditioners

Best Air Conditioner Brands (India)

Hitachi is a Japanese brand which is one of the biggest manufacturers of ACs in Asia. Hitachi offers premium AC with high performance and durability. Their window air conditioners come with twin motor technology which makes them equally efficient as split air conditioners. Hitachi’s split AC saves your money by their highly efficient use of energy along with features like Ace Cut out and Auto Clean Technology.

Check here

Voltas is the largest selling brand of AC in India. Their all-weather AC is quite popular. They come with features like high Intelligent Heating, Ambient Cooling and Active Dehumidifier, which gives a comfortable atmosphere to you. Voltas ACs are affordable and have a high energy efficiency rating. Servicing of Voltas AC can be easily done as there are multiple service centres in India.

Check here

LG is the second most popular AC brand in India. LG’s air conditioners are known for their quality, performance and affordability. Their inverter AC is the best in the market. Some of the latest and advanced technologies LG employs are Dual Cool Technology, Himalaya Cooling, Monsoon Comfort Technology and Mosquito Away Technology.

Check here

Daikin is about a century-old brand in consumer electronics space. Since its entry in India, Daikins’s ACs have become favourite among households. Its ACs are quite premium and come with excellent build quality. It provides advanced technologies like Econo mode, Intelligent Eye, Coanda airflow.

Check here

Samsung‘s ACs are known for the cooling and comfort level they provide. After Voltas and LG, Samsung has the third most AC sales in India. Samsung’s split ACs offer an elegant design and durability. With innovations like Triple Inverter Technology, Smart Control, Wind-Free Triangle Design, Samsung is pioneering to give the best consumer experience possible.

Check here

Conclusion

After reading this buying guide you might have an idea of what things to consider while buying an air conditioner. For a device as important as an AC, it is necessary to know what suits you and whatnot. After all, it’s about your taste and preferences. Investing some time in choosing the best air conditioner for yourself can save you from the hassle and a lot of money. Also, your time is very important to us.

For any queries and doubts related to choosing the best air conditioner for you, drop your comments in the comments box below and we will try our best to solve your problems.

4 thoughts on “How to Choose the Best Air Conditioner in 2020

  1. Thanks for sharing this well-written article, I really do love reading this air conditioning article of yours.

  2. Like!! I blog quite often and I genuinely thank you for your information. The article has truly piqued my interest.

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