Central air conditioning, a heat pump, or a split system air conditioner is a major investment. For many reasons, some people prefer smaller air conditioners. Sometimes you have just a small space you want to keep cool, without spending money to cool a larger area. Sometimes you know you will be moving and do not want to spend a lot on a system you will not be using. Buying small sometimes makes a lot of sense.
Three Choices When it Comes to Small Air Conditioners
In smaller air conditioners, you have three main choices:
- Window units
- Portable air conditioners (sometimes called swamp coolers)
- Wall units
Should I Buy a Window Air Conditioner?
If you rent, plan to move soon, or have a small space, a window air conditioner makes good financial sense. It is a much lower investment than central air conditioning or a heat pump. It can save you money on your energy bill. You can take it with you when you vacate.
Most people install window air conditioners themselves, though folks with disabilities or the elderly can turn to trained technicians for professional installation. Most window air conditioners simply plug into a wall outlet. You may need to use screws and a screwdriver to secure the air conditioner and prevent the window from accidentally sliding open.
Should I Buy a Portable Air Conditioner?
If you do not want to give up an entire window to an air conditioner, consider a portable unit, also known as a swamp cooler. It uses evaporative cooling and a tiny exhaust hose to vent hot room air outside. It is the ultimate in portability, too. Suppose you begin your day in a home office, but want to move to your craft or sewing room. Simply roll the portable air conditioner from one room to the next, putting the ventilating hose out a window.
Should I Buy a Wall Unit?
If you own your home, a wall unit (which requires a hole in your exterior wall) could work for you. Usually, wall air conditioners are built in as permanent, year-round fixtures. Remove the outside cover for the cooling season; replace it during fall and winter. Expect to pay more for the unit and installation when you buy a wall air conditioner.
Contact ACE with All of Your Air Conditioning Questions
For expert advice on selecting and maintaining any air conditioner, contact ACE Home Services at (602) 943-2000. We provide installation, service and repair services on all types of air conditioning systems.