Increasing numbers of homeowners are seeing the benefits of home air conditioner units. They can help regulate the temperature in a home, improve the air quality and ensure that troublesome issues such as damp and mould are not allowed to develop.
So, just how effective are they, and how exactly do they work?
Air conditioning systems have a long history, dating back to the beginning of the 20th century. During the early years, they were used primarily in commercial settings to help increase productivity. These days, they’re an increasing addition to homes, particularly in temperate climates like the UK.
They work on the same essential principle as they did over a hundred years ago. So, if you’re considering purchasing your first home air conditioner what should you expect?
At its most basic, the air conditioning system contains two actions that occur simultaneously. Warm air is cooled as it blows across a cold cooling coil full of refrigerant. Inside the home, heat is absorbed into the refrigerant as the refrigerant turns from liquid to gas. The cooled air is distributed back to the house. The refrigerant gas is compressed before entering a large coil. Heat is then released outside as the refrigerant turns back to a liquid and a large fan pulls outdoor air through the outdoor coil rejecting the heat absorbed from the house. This process then repeats itself to maintain the required temperature in the room.
How much does air conditioning cost?
The overall cost of fitting air conditioning can differ widely depending on the type, and scale of air conditioning unit you’re looking for. You will obviously pay less for a standalone air conditioning unit, but they may not be as effective. In terms of running costs, both standalone units and split-unit or fixed air conditioners cost the same. Fixed air conditioners start from around £500, but prices vary depending on the size of your home, what you require the unit to do and your choice of an air conditioner. They must be installed and maintained by a registered gas engineer. The domestic air conditioner installation costs are around £1,000 per indoor unit.
Does home insurance cover air conditioners?
Home insurance covers air conditioning to the same extent as the rest of your home is covered. Damage caused by fires, falling trees, vandalism, lightning strikes and sometimes flooding are all covered in standard homeowners policies. On the other hand, normal wear and tear or accidental damage are not. So, if your AC simply breaks after 10 years of use, then you won’t be reimbursed for repair or replacement. However, it is possible to purchase specialist cover for air conditioning.
How are air conditioners serviced?
As a general guide, you should have your air conditioning unit serviced at least once a year, even if you don’t believe it has any noticeable defects. Some of the signs that your unit might need servicing include if it makes more noise than usual, or if it takes longer to cool a room. If your energy costs increase noticeably, this could mean that your air conditioning unit needs attention.
For advice about air conditioning for your home and to have your questions answered, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team of professional engineers.