A basic air conditioner system will cost around 44p an hour to run. These costs can vary widely with degree and frequency of use, time of year and the type of air conditioning system in use.
Types of Air Conditioning
There are various options available with air conditioning. The type you choose depends on many factors. The size of the room, or existing ventilation, will affect your choice. Different types of AC’s will also incur different installation and running costs.
Ducted Air Conditioner (Central Air Conditioner)
Central air conditioning is seen as one of the most luxurious options. Ducted or Central air conditioning units are able to cool each room simultaneously, they are a great commercial choice. Being able to spread cool air evenly, it is a good choice for a larger space.
A central air conditioner is essentially made up of two units. The condensing unit will be located outside. Its job is to produce cool air that travels down ducting. This ducting and tubing connects the condensing unit to the evaporative unit. This evaporative unit disburses the cool air throughout all the rooms.
Central air conditioning has many advantages. Its size is ideally suited for large spaces. It is capable of cooling larger spaces much more efficiently than other AC systems. The central AC system is also virtually silent, as the condensing unit is located outside. Additionally, it needs little maintenance while working well. Thermostat control also means you control the temperature and keep utility overheads down.
The packaged central air conditioner usually includes heating coils or gas furnaces. This allows the same unit to be used for central heating. It is a major cost saver in terms of installation and utilities. Properly installed units can work for years with little to no maintenance required.
Ducted Air Conditioner Running Costs
Before choosing, you should know how much it costs to run a ducted air conditioner. Total costs incurred depend on the size of the space you want the air conditioner for. The quality and features available on it will affect cost. A cost estimate for installing this type of AC is around £2,000. Running costs vary starting at 20p per hour.
However, this price is also influenced by the labour involved. This estimate is more accurate for a new building. Older buildings that might require new duct work might incur higher costs.
Split Air Conditioner (aka Wall Mounted)
Wall-mounted split air conditioners are very common in small commercial settings. The split system has a part hanging outside, and one mounted inside. The compressor is the exterior part that remains outdoors. It pulls air from outside and filters cool air in. The two parts are connected together by copper pipes and cables.
Wall-mounted air conditioners save up on space. Especially compared to floor standing units, they are more efficient. They are also relatively quiet, as a split system. The compressor tends to make a lot of noise, but it remains on the outside. These units also come remote-controlled, and offer many features. Temperature control, fan power and timers are just a few of the facilities available. Many split AC’s now are also able to provide heating.
These AC units are not designed for large spaces. They have the benefit of being cheaper than central conditioning. However, separate rooms will each require their own unit. This means costs multiply depending on the number of rooms requiring air conditioning. The sight of the compressor can also make the outside of the building appear less attractive.
Split AC’s are most commonly used in homes and small offices. They may also fit for commercial use. Most ideally, they are suited when you have few rooms that need an AC. Depending on the unit size, it may not be able to handle very large or crowded rooms.
Split Air Conditioner running costs
Wall-mounted AC’s are generally quite cheap. A basic unit will cost you around £500. Keep in mind this cost increases with each additional unit. So if you’re looking for AC for just one or two rooms, this is a good choice. Running costs can amount to up to 10p an hour for one unit.
If you would like to condition a large space, alternate choices are available. A wall-mounted AC works best in smaller spaces. Overworking the AC will lead to additional and frequent maintenance costs.
Air to Air Systems
Air to air systems are used in warm climates, they work with indoor and outdoor temperature systems. These cooling systems will pull in the warm air from outside. The air leaving the building is then used to cool the warmer air. Such cooling systems are often much more efficient. They save up on energy while providing fresh, cool air.
Air to air systems work by maintaining an ideal temperature indoors. Air is pulled in from outside using a fan. This air is then cooled before being released into the room. The constant cycle keeps the indoor temperature low. They have both small scale and large scale applications. Essentially, they work well in both the home and commercial environment. You can use them for small rooms, as well as much larger ones.
They also do not require any additional cooling systems. With moderate climates, they can be used year round. They also come in heating varieties that can be used during colder months. Even with an additional cooling unit, they provide better, fresher airflow.
Not only are air to air systems energy efficient, they also reduce running costs. These systems are able to improve air quality without making much noise.
Air to Air Systems running costs
Air to air systems are much more efficient to use. They can save up significantly on energy use and cost. On average, they cost only about 1p an hour to run. This is extensively cheaper than other cooling systems. It’s an advantage given how much does it cost to run an air conditioner.
Other types of cooling systems can offer much more features. Air to air systems are better suited for moderate and long-term temperature control. They can make for a comfortable environment at a low cost. Air-to-air systems are very rare in the UK as we unfortunately do not have the climate to make them efficient.
How can I reduce the cost of using my air conditioner?
AC running costs can begin to add up overtime. Luckily there are steps you can take to reduce those costs. The best way to reduce the running costs of your AC is to make your building as energy efficient as possible. One way is to install energy-efficient windows. Older structures have windows that might not seal properly, which may lead to heat escaping. New windows can incur an investment cost, but will reduce the running costs of your AC and heating systems. Alternatively, you can better seal up your current windows to avoid energy loss.
If your AC unit doesn’t already have one, install a thermostat. Being able to control the temperature will help you become more energy efficient. You can also reduce energy use by reducing sunlight. Sunlight entering the building can raise indoor temperatures. Protecting against it can keep temperatures and energy use low.
Having a properly maintained service plan for your machines is one of the best ways to keep running costs low. Units can fall in disrepair and require filter changes, this causes them to use more energy. Spending on maintenance will save you on yearly costs to run the unit.
Is it more expensive to run an air conditioner for cooling or heating a space?
Air conditioners vary in their energy consumption. This depends on the size of the AC, the model and their runtime. It also depends on the purpose they are being used for. Generally speaking, it costs more to run an AC for heating than cooling. Estimates suggest the cost for heating is about twice as high as cooling.
The process of heating a space is usually more energy-intensive. Cooling is a much simpler process requiring much less energy. Heating electric coils or introducing gas heating accounts for the much higher heating vs cooling costs for AC units. Heat pumps are a notable exception to heating systems. They use almost the same energy for heating as AC’s use for cooling.
How Much Maintenance Do Air Conditioning Systems Need?
Different types of systems have different requirements. The frequency of servicing and maintenance also depends on usage. Ideally, servicing an AC is good for keeping it in prime condition for years. A good rule of thumb is to have a minor service every 6 months and a major service every year. This ensures your system is clean and kept in good working condition.
With regular servicing, maintenance and running costs should be low. Keeping your system clean and well-maintained should avoid any other costs. In fact good quality systems rarely require anything besides basic care. Like anything else, AC systems work best when they’re kept in shape. Good maintenance will affect how much it cost to run your air conditioning system.
Air-conditioning Installation for your commercial space
Installing an air conditioner isn’t just about buying a system. The kind of commercial space you have will determine the system best suited for you. It can be a bit tricky to determine which way to go. Choosing the wrong kind of system can result in massive unnecessary costs for your business.
Reaching out to a professional can be a worthwhile investment. They can help you figure out what kind of system will fulfill your needs. The proper installation of the system can also be taken care of by people who know what they’re doing. In the end, this will give you a reliable system at low running costs. Contact Us to find out more.