More than 100 years have passed since the first air cooling device invention in the United States. Today, about 60 million air conditioners are sold in the world every year. About 5% of sales are in Russia. However, many people still have concerns that air conditioning could cause significant harm to their health.
Is this really the case?
Modern air conditioning is a device designed to maintain a given temperature, humidity, and air mobility indoors. Depending on the model, air conditioners can carry up to 20% of the air intake from the street. The air conditioner consists of a compressor, capacitor, vaporizer, and a system of copper tubes connecting these devices. On the tubes circulates a coolant – Freon, which under the influence of the compressor can pass from a liquid state to a gaseous state, and vice versa. The transition of gas to liquid (condensation) is accompanied by heat release. The air passing through a part of the circuit called a capacitor is heated. The conversion of liquid into a gas (evaporation) – occurs with the absorption of heat. This process takes place in a vaporizer, the air which is cooled. The direction of air flows through the capacitor and vaporizer is regulated by the fans. This principle is the basis of any air conditioner and does not depend on its type, model, and manufacture.
All household air conditioners are divided into three main groups: window, floor, and split systems.
Window air conditioners are very common and quite easy to install. They are mounted in a window ae and have a special filter that cleans the air from dust. Some models of window air conditioners have a smooth temperature regulator, which allows them to maintain the most comfortable conditions. Several window air conditioners have remote control. The main drawback of window air conditioning is the high level of noise.
Mobile floor air conditioners come in two types – with and without a remote unit. The backless model is a small tube that moves easily because it is small in size and weight. Floor air conditioning with a block consists of two parts, one of which is attached to special belts outside the window. The main drawback of these air conditioners – they are also quite noisy.
Split systems are the most convenient. They consist of outer and inner blocks connected by copper tubes. The outer unit includes all large and noisy parts of the air conditioning unit.
Inside the room is a small silent unit with remote control.
In addition, all modern split systems are equipped with antibacterial and coal filters
to clean the air. With these models of air conditioners, the temperature in the room can be adjusted to 1-2 0C, set the time to turn the air conditioning on and off automatically.
Remote control ensures airflow direction and sets different modes of air conditioning to get the most comfort.
However, according to some experts, air conditioners can pose a threat to human health.
But only in the case of incorrect installation, installation, setting up, and operation. If you comply with all the rules and requirements, you can always adjust the air conditioner’s work so that the room was comfortable and no harm to health.
And these rules are straightforward:
The temperature difference between the street and the room should not exceed 10 degrees Celsius, and the total temperature in the room should not be lowered below 20 degrees Celsius.
Lead specialist of the Institute of Allergy Evelina Goldobin says: “If the heat is 30 degrees outside and the office is only 17, the parameters of the microclimate are violated, which can lead to exacerbation of allergic reactions and chronic diseases. The human body is a flexible, perfectly adaptable system. Gradually, though with difficulty, it adjusts to any conditions of survival. Artificial intervention in this process can weaken the body’s overall resistance, reduce immunity, and stimulate the development of various diseases – for example, the catarrh of the upper respiratory tract, bronchitis, pneumonia, rheumatism, sore throat. It is better not to set the temperature in the room, which would be very different from the thermal regime on the street.”
By the way, this applies to air conditioners working in cars. Car owners often catch a cold because, coming out of the cool cabin of the car, they immediately find themselves in the street heat. And the cause of the disease here is not air conditioning, but a sharp difference between the street temperature and the temperature inside the car.
The air coming out of the air conditioning should not be directed at the person.
After all, in this case, the person gets under the jet of cold air coming out of the air conditioner, which can only be 8 degrees Celsius. If the hot person in 30 degrees heat to direct the flow of air with a temperature of 8 degrees – colds can not be avoided. In large rooms, air from the air conditioner is best directed along with the ceiling. This facilitates the promotion of cold air, which gradually descends due to what is heavier than warm. With the help of a special control system, you can achieve an even scattering of cool air. It should also be taken into account that in front of the working air conditioner formed approximately two by three meters, where the air mobility is high, and the temperature is 2-3oC lower than in the rest of the room. Therefore, it is very unreasonable to have a desk or cot in this place.
You need to clean and change filters regularly.
Modern air conditioners have a multi-level air purification system, which can trap dust particles of microscopic size (hundreds of fractions of a micron) and eliminate intrusive odors and cigarette smoke. Filters have a special outer and internal coating, preventing the reproduction of bacteria and fungi. A reliable air purification system is the most important criterion for choosing an air conditioner – especially if you have a child in the house. For normal operation and high-quality air filtration, changing the filters with the frequency specified in the manufacturer’s instructions is necessary. Usually, once every two weeks, filters are cleaned, and once every three months – change. It is advisable to call an air conditioning specialist once a year, for example, in the spring before the start of the season.
If all of the above rules are followed, the health risk from having a working air conditioner is minimized. And to reduce it to almost zero, it is necessary to listen to the following advice of experts:
- Assess your body’s capabilities, living and working conditions, and the appropriateness of using aids to improve the microclimate.
- Be sure to consult a professional to choose the best technique for you.
- When the air conditioner is working, if possible, use the mode of temperature change smoothly.
- In a room where several people take into account, the initial capabilities of each choose the average mode.
- Carefully monitor the temperature and condition of the air in the room.