The question of how to choose an air conditioner for an apartment, private house or office begins with the onset of warm weather. The purchase of climate equipment is relevant for inhabited and under construction facilities. It is convenient to install the equipment during the repair in order to choose a suitable place for placing the blocks and hide the pipes connecting them until the finishing works. Let's consider what types and sizes of air conditioners there are, how to choose the right equipment and go through the rules for installing air conditioners.
What is an air conditioner and how does it work?
An air conditioner is a device from the category of climate technology, which cools or heats the air to the temperature set by the user and maintains the achieved parameters. Air conditioners are household, industrial, automotive, but they all work on the same principle.
Before choosing a home air conditioner, the buyer should familiarize himself with the basic information about the device, the principle of its operation. It is based on the ability of a liquid to accumulate heat during evaporation, with subsequent return during condensation. Refrigerant, which circulates through the pipes of the air conditioner, is subjected to different pressures and temperatures, it is compressed and expanded, a circular change of state from liquid to gas.
There are 4 main components in an air conditioner - compressor, condenser, evaporator and evaporator. All these nodes are connected by pipes. A closed system of pipes with nodes creates a refrigeration circuit. The refrigerator moves along this circuit.
Principle of action:
- The refrigerant passes from the evaporator to the compressor in gaseous form. Its temperature is low in this area. The compressor compresses the gas. At the same time, there is an increase in pressure. The refrigerator starts to warm up.
- Refrigerant reaches high temperature and high pressure. In this form, it enters the condenser.
- Here the refrigerator is cooled by blowing cold air. Freon emits heat and becomes liquid. The temperature of the air leaving the condenser starts to rise. This is facilitated by the heat released by the compressed refrigerant.
- The next point in the coolant's journey is the booster. The temperature of the refrigerator is about the same or slightly higher than the ambient air. The state of freon is liquid, the pressure is high. As freon passes through the booster, the pressure begins to drop rapidly. The temperature of the refrigerator also decreases.
- The cycle is approaching the final stage - the refrigerant evaporates again. There it is affected by room air. Refrigerant absorbs heat, turns into a gas and returns through the pipes of the air conditioning system.
Selection of the power of the air conditioner according to the area of the room
Choosing an air conditioner according to the area of the room is the most correct way to find a suitable option. It is not difficult to calculate the optimal capacity of the air conditioner for a certain area: with a ceiling height of up to 3 m for every 10 sq. m. m space needs a 1 kW air conditioner. It turns out that the room is 20 square meters. You need to buy a 2 kW air conditioner. However, this estimate does not take certain factors into account. To calculate everything more accurately, you need to use a formula
S - area, m²
h - ceiling height, m
K - coefficient for lighting:
0.03 - for a shaded room;
0.035 - during average lighting;
0.04 - for rooms in which
Gets a lot of sunlight.
Types of air conditioners
Climate technology is classified according to several criteria. Air conditioners are of the following types:
- Household - is a widespread air conditioner, has an attractive design, low noise, multi-functional, used mainly in residential areas from 10 to 100 m².
- Semi-industrial - MSGVA air conditioners have an increased service life and reliability of industrial equipment, which are installed mainly in public places, spacious apartments and private houses, offices, shopping centers and other facilities from 50 to 300 m².
- Industrial - air conditioners with a service life of 20-30 years, intended for use in sports and sports halls, on shopping floors, in office buildings with an area of 300 m².
Air conditioners for domestic use are classified according to their design features. To understand which air conditioner to choose for an apartment, consider the main types of household appliances.
Mobile air conditioner
Continuing to discuss what air conditioners are for an apartment, let's focus on mobile outdoor units.
In this case, all working elements are enclosed in one case, similar in size to a narrow dishwasher. No special skills are required to install the air conditioner. It is enough to connect the air conditioner to the network and bring the flexible air duct to an open window, door or a special hole in the wall. Due to its small size, the air conditioner is easy to transport - for example, it can be used in a city apartment and, if necessary, in a country house. A mobile air conditioner is a good option for short-term use.
Inverter air conditioner
The first inverter air conditioners appeared in the 80s and were much more expensive than traditional air conditioners. Today the price difference is 15-20%. Buyers who do not know which air conditioner to buy for an apartment or a private house are more often advised to use inverters - they are more reliable, quieter and more economical than their counterparts without an inverter motor.
A distinctive feature of inverter split systems is the ability to convert alternating current into direct current and vice versa. Due to this, the air conditioner regulates the speed of the compressor motor, consumes less energy, accurately maintains and smoothly regulates the set temperature in the room. Overpaying for an inverter is offset by a long service life and significant savings on electricity bills.
These air conditioner models have a fixed capacity. When the equipment determines the deviation of the indicators from the specified temperature, it turns on automatically. When the setting is reached, it is disabled.
Air conditioner operation modes
Initially, the main purpose of household air conditioners was to cool the indoor environment. Along with the development of technologies, their functions have expanded. The capabilities of modern air conditioner models include air humidification, space heating and ventilation.
The most common modes of operation of the air conditioner:
The cooling mode provides for turning on the air conditioner when the temperature in the room exceeds the specified parameters. After cooling the air to the required temperature values, the compressor is automatically turned off or goes into maintenance mode. This is accompanied by a complete cessation of blowing cold air by the fan or a significant reduction in its speed.
If the air conditioner is in heating mode, it will turn on after the indoor temperature drops to the set parameters. When the temperature rises to the specified values, the compressor and fan are turned off or go into auxiliary mode in case of using an inverter system.
ventilation and humidification
The ventilation mode of the air conditioner takes into account only the operation of the fan located in its indoor unit. Indoor air is mixed without the inflow of fresh air from the street.
To maintain health, it is important to maintain an acceptable level of humidity in the building. A person's long stay at high humidity levels is harmful. Most modern air conditioner models combine the cooling mode with the humidification function, since water vapor condenses during operation and their content in the air space decreases.
The function of humidifying air conditioners is designed to replace moisture losses in the air space of the room. There are different methods of hydration
- : a built-in steam generator is structurally provided, inside which the water is heated by two electrodes by steam generation.
- Use of ultrasonic humidification. High frequency waves transform the water into a fog-like cloud. The use of a hydrostat in the design of the system contributes to the smooth regulation of air humidity.
- Some models have a special humidifying element of the outdoor unit. The principle of action is to use a zeolite cassette while passing the incoming air through it. Condensate is collected with the help of hygroscopic porous material. The cassette constantly rotates and transfers moisture to the heating element, which causes the warm air to be saturated with water droplets. The advantage of this method of humidification compared to the standard one is that there is no need to monitor the water level in a special container and constantly fill it.
Air conditioner maintenance
All split systems require periodic comprehensive maintenance. It is a complex multi-step process that requires the participation of a specialist with professional skills. Therefore, to carry out such work, you need to call competent craftsmen, without relying on your own strength.
Master during maintenance:
- Check the correct operation of the air conditioner
- Check the performance of operating modes
- Measure the temperature of the inlet and outlet air streams on the indoor unit
- Dismantling, cleaning and assembly of decorative panels and internal block housing;
- Check and blow the drain pipeline, internal wiring, control panel;
- Clean the condenser and the outdoor unit, use the steam generator to treat the indoor unit, clean and blow the air filters
- Check the connectors and contact groups, power wires, grounding, fastening of the outdoor unit, cooling pipes for leaks, if necessary, fill with fuel.
Conclusion: 8 steps to choose the best air conditioner
- Decide on the type of air conditioner. Consider wall-mounted and cassette-type split systems if the apartment or house is being renovated and it is possible to route freon through the walls. If you are not ready to hit the walls or want to use the same equipment in different places, you can consider the options of mobile air conditioners.
- Choose a convenient and correct layout of the internal equipment unit, taking into account the characteristics of the room.
- Imagine how often you use air conditioner. Inverter air conditioner models perform better in regular and intensive operation and are also more economical.
- Will air conditioning in your home be in demand during the winter? By answering this question, you will understand which air conditioner model you need - for summer or year-round use.
- Choose an air conditioner according to the area of the room where it will be installed. Do not forget about the energy reserve and room characteristics.
- Determine the purchase budget, study the prices not only for the climate equipment, but also for the installation and maintenance of the system.
- Which qualities are most important to you and which ones are not a priority? A clear idea of what you need will allow you to choose the air conditioner model you want, not the maximum configuration.
- Pay attention to the noise level of the indoor unit of the mobile air conditioner or split system. If they are purchased for a bedroom, a resting place, give preference to low-noise models.
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