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Top 5 questions to ask when purchasing an air-conditioning unit for your sustainable home

Did you know that there are various energy-efficient options when purchasing an air con unit? We’ve answered the 5 most common air con questions to help you along your sustainable home journey.

Did you know that there are energy-efficient options when purchasing an air conditioner? That’s right, you don't have to miss out on air-con if you are looking to make a more sustainable choice for your next home upgrade.

While the options may feel endless, we’ve made it easier by answering the top 5 questions Aussies asked when purchasing a new air conditioning unit, and doing so in a sustainable way.

How can I ensure that my air-conditioning unit lasts as long as possible?

Like any machine, servicing your air conditioner regularly will keep it running nicely, but how often you service your air-con depends on the type of system, age and usage.

A general rule of thumb is to service it every year, and don't forget to check your manufacturing booklet for exact timings. In between services you can do the following:

  • Organise an internal clean of your system (clean your filter)
  • Keep an eye out for any debris that may fall on the external unit
  • If you feel like your air-con system isn’t working at its optimal level call in a professional to take a look

Ideally, you don’t want to workload and push the system too hard in summer and winter, you should keep an eye on how long you have the system running in those seasons. Maintaining a good temperature throughout the year will cause less wear and tear on the lifespan of your air conditioner.

How can I reduce my energy costs with air conditioning?

There are a few simple things you can do to reduce your energy costs when you have air conditioning. These include:

  • Be mindful of the times that you have it switched on. Don't leave it running all day when you're not home or even all night when you're sleeping.
  • Use a smart thermostat to manage when the air conditioner goes on for optimal house temperature during the day and at night. The most efficient temperature is between 18-20 in winter and 25-27 degrees all year round if you want energy efficiency. An increase or decrease of one degree can save you up to 10% in energy usage and energy costs.
  • Give your unit a regular service and clean. Your air conditioner will run at its optimal level when it's well-serviced and kept clean.
  • Opt for a reverse-cycle air conditioner, according to Climate Council on average they are $316 cheaper to run per year than a standing gas heater, $614 cheaper to run than ducted gas, and $908 cheaper than
    plug-in electric heaters.

What do the air conditioner ratings mean?

The rating system was created to help consumers compare the energy efficiency of air conditioning systems. There are separate energy efficiency ratings for heating and cooling, and there are differences in the ratings based on the area you’re located in. You can read more about the energy rating system on the Energy Rating website.

Star rating: compares air conditioners against others in the market with the same size or capacity, the more stars the more energy efficient.

⁠Energy consumption: how much kWh/ year the unit uses.

Tip: Look for the star rating ( 5 and above) and the energy efficient rating (4 or above)

What to look for when buying an air conditioner?

There are different types of air conditioner units that suit different house types and household needs.

To learn more about everything you need to know when purchasing an air-con unit we’ve created this article - but make sure you also speak to a professional who can answer any specific questions so you have a tailored solution for your needs.

How much does it cost to install air conditioning?

The differences in price come down to the type of AC unit you purchase, the size of your home and the complexity of the installation.

*Source: Switch and save: how gas is costing households report

The information contained in this article is general in nature and does not take into account your personal situation. You should consider whether the information is appropriate to your needs and, where appropriate, seek professional advice.