When it comes to saving on your electricity usage, there are practical methods such as setting your AC’s temperature correctly and opting for ACs with inverter technology.
In Malaysia’s sweltering climate, it’s commonplace for households to have air conditioning for improved family comfort.
However, it’s no secret that running an air conditioner can significantly hike up your electricity bill.
Fortunately, there are effective strategies to reduce the impact of air conditioning on your energy costs. Improper usage of air conditioners can be a major contributor to high electricity bills.
Here are five methods to lower those expenses:
1. Choose the Right Air Conditioner Horsepower
When purchasing an air conditioner, it’s crucial to select one with the appropriate horsepower (HP).
Determine the HP based on the dimensions of your room using the following formula:
HP = (Room area x 60) / 9000
For instance, a room measuring 12′ x 10′ requires an air conditioner with a 0.8 HP capacity, making a 1 HP unit ideal for this room size.
Although you could opt for a 1.5 HP air conditioner, anything beyond 2 HP exceeds the room’s requirements.
Selecting the correct HP for your air conditioner is essential to minimise compressor activity. The more frequent the compressor operates, the greater the electricity consumption.
Using the right-sized air conditioner ensures the compressor runs for more extended periods, resulting in energy savings.
2. Invest in Inverter Technology
To reduce your electricity expenditure, consider air conditioners equipped with inverter technology. Inverters help stabilise the operation of the air conditioner’s motor or compressor.
This stability leads to energy savings. An illustrative graph of electricity usage can clarify this benefit.
However, it’s important to note that air conditioners with inverter technology are generally more expensive and can be slightly more challenging to install compared to standard units.
3. Set Your Air Conditioner Correctly
Proper air conditioner usage extends beyond merely switching it on and choosing the lowest temperature setting.
Typically, users keep the air conditioner at a single temperature throughout the night and into the morning.
A more efficient approach involves initiating the air conditioner at the lowest temperature with the highest fan speed for 30 to 45 minutes.
Subsequently, adjust the temperature to 25°C or 26°C, which is optimal for sleeping, and reduce the fan speed by approximately half.
Air conditioners consume the most electricity when initially started because the compressor demands a considerable energy surge.
The recommended settings expedite the compressor’s “cut-off” period, extending the intervals between its operation.
4. Avoid Frequent On/Off Cycling
A critical aspect to remember is avoiding frequent on/off cycling of your air conditioner.
When your room feels sufficiently cool, refrain from immediately switching off the air conditioner; instead, employ the temperature settings as previously mentioned.
It’s essential to realise that air conditioners draw a substantial amount of electricity when initiating the compressor’s operation.
5. Maintain Regular Air Conditioner Servicing
Last but not least, it’s imperative to schedule periodic servicing for your air conditioner every six months to a year.
Neglecting servicing can lead to decreased cooling efficiency and frequent adjustments to settings.
During servicing, tasks such as cleaning the filter and replenishing depleted refrigerant are typically carried out.
Regularly serviced air conditioners provide cool and comfortable air, have a longer lifespan, and contribute to energy savings.
DIY Air Conditioner Maintenance
Even on a tight budget, air conditioner servicing remains essential. If you believe your air conditioner is functioning optimally, you can try servicing it yourself.
To start, ensure the air conditioner is switched off or unplugged. Remove the front filter by opening the air conditioner cover. Apply ‘air conditioner cleaner’ to the inside, targeting the ‘cooling fins’ or ‘cooling coils’ of the air conditioner. Allow it to sit for 10 minutes or as directed on the product.
Clean the air conditioner filter to eliminate any dust and debris. After 10 minutes or once the filter is thoroughly dry, reinstall the air conditioner as usual.
There’s no need to clean the ‘cooling coils’ as dirt naturally exits through the rear pipe of the air conditioner.
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