For private use, two different types of air conditioning systems are commercially available: the split units to be installed and the mobile small air conditioners, also called monoblock units. Split devices are slightly more expensive to purchase. In addition, there are costs for assembly by a specialist company. For this purpose, the energy consumption of such an air conditioner is lower than with a mobile small device. The latter, on the other hand, has the advantage that it can be used in different rooms as required.
Different types of air conditioners and their power consumption
Whichever device you choose or have chosen, both types of air conditioners cause high electricity costs. The performance of a device should be appropriate to the room size. In order to air-conditioning a 25 m2 room, a split device needs approximately a power of around 555 W. A small mobile device needs significantly more, namely around 962 W. The electricity costs are correspondingly higher:
With an electricity price of 0.30 euros per kWh and an average running time of 350 hours per year, a corresponding air conditioning system comes at a cost of around 80 euros (split device) or even 130 euros (mobile small device).
What is the result of the high power consumption of the air conditioning system?
The function of air conditioning is comparable to that of a refrigerator. Both systems work with the principle of evaporative cooling to cool down the air in the room. Only the air conditioner needs to cool a much larger room. This requires a lot of energy. It operates the compressor and the fans that suck in the cool air and distribute it in the room.
When buying an air conditioner, one should pay less attention to a favourable purchase price than to consumption. The manufacturer’s data usually indicate the power consumption of the air conditioning system per year. This corresponds to a guideline of 350 hours, as only a useful life over the warm summer months is assumed. Split air conditioning systems are available in efficiency classes A+++ to D, mobile microclimate units reach maximum class A+.
How to save electricity costs on your air conditioning
There is no denying that air conditioning has a high power consumption. Even with economical user behaviour, the user will be reflected on the annual electricity bill. However, there is potential for savings that you should use to keep costs as low as possible.
Close windows and doors: The energy consumption of the air conditioning system increases enormously with open doors and windows because the air to be cooled is not limited to just one room. In the case of mobile devices, the window slots for the exhaust air hose should also be sealed.
Avoid direct sunlight: This ensures that the room does not heat up unnecessarily.
Location: A mobile air conditioning system should be positioned as freely as possible so that the cool air can circulate freely through the room.
Not too cold: The temperature of the air-conditioned room should not exceed 6 °C below the outside temperature. This not only reduces the power consumption of the air conditioning system but also prevents colds, which can be triggered by excessive temperature differences.
Avoid heating function: Split devices often also have a heating function. However, you should not use these if possible, but should be limited to the normal heating system. The energy consumption for heating is much higher in the case of air conditioning.
No stand-by: Disconnect the air conditioner completely from the mains if you are not using it. The standby function consumes power unnecessarily.
Cleaning and maintenance: Clean your air conditioner regularly and have it maintained by a specialist. This keeps your system functional and prevents air pollution from bacteria and moulds.
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