Portable A/C Running 24/7
Summertime can be flaming hot, and people are looking for something to cool their room. Those dealing with extreme heat and water restrictions tend to run their portable A/Cs 24 hours.
This occurrence is not uncommon, but the question is, should you?
Can portable A/C units run 24/7? Regardless of your cleaning and maintenance efforts, portable A/Cs are not built to run 24/7. Doing so will only cause strains to the unit making its life shorter. It is a waste of energy, and without a doubt, will reflect on your bills.
Hot weather gives you a sticky feeling, which forces you to run your A/C all day to be comfortable. This article will explain more about running portable A/Cs.
Running Portable Air Conditioner 24/7
Portable A/C’s job is to cool the room, and it may sound easy and safe to let it run the whole day and night. But running it 24/7 will create a strain on your unit and your safety.
I understand that the summer season can be hot and sticky, but it is not a reason to sacrifice safety.
Letting your unit run this long is a terrible idea. It may clog the air filter and could, later on, cause drainage problems.
Also, the unit is likely to malfunction, causing it to do the opposite of its job. Instead of blowing cool air, it will blow warm air. I wish I could say these are the only problems.
Air filters may be cheap and easy to replace once broken, but they can still affect the unit’s life. The condenser coil will be your next problem.
It will collect the dirt and debris from the air filters, which causes them to clog even more. Eventually, it will damage the unit’s compressor.
A broken condenser and compressor is the worst thing that could happen with your unit. We all know these components are expensive and sometimes difficult to replace.
Often when these two get broken, it forces you to dispose of the whole unit and buy a new one. Users would choose to buy new units instead of replacing the broken components to save more money.
Another terrible thing about this is wasted energy. It is not good for the earth! It will use more energy/electricity but will be inefficient. Plus, there is no reason to be happy about the greenhouse gas emissions from the unit.
What You Should Do
1. Shut Your A/C Overnight
When asleep, human bodies can tolerate high temperatures more than awake. Also, letting your A/C unit run idle as temperatures fall will help avoid freezing up in the mornings.
2. Invest In A Programmable Thermostat
Investing in an excellent programmable thermostat can be expensive, but it will not cost you a fortune.
It will give you the ability to adjust home cooling and heating according to schedule.
For example, you can set it to have 40 degrees throughout the day and 60 degrees during the night. Having one also has many benefits.
Benefits Of A Programmable Thermostat
It could save you money and will quickly offset the cost of upgrading. The best thing to avoid high bills is to lessen the use of electricity.
You can set a programmable thermostat to adapt to your daily routine. So instead of cooling your house, it will shut off.
Convenience and savings by automation. Lucky for you, thermostats are available almost everywhere now. Before the invention of this tool, users were stuck with two options:
- Pay to cool the room while no one is around
- Save on bills but come home to an uncomfortable temperature
Now, this tool can help you do the work at a lower cost without any second thought. It will provide you the convenience of not needing to readjust the whole day and night.
Another good thing about this invention is it gives reliable precision. It allows you to pinpoint and adjust to the exact temperature you need.
Every degree will help you save 1-2% on utility bills, which will be a big help. While programmable units differ with only half a degree in temperature, manual ones suffer from five.
It isn’t delightful when you are resting, but you have to adjust the temperature manually. This tool can help you with that by keeping a consistent temperature throughout the day.
It will run at a constant level that will maintain the temperature you need to be comfortable.
Your home will immediately be more energy-efficient throughout all seasons. It means you can utilize your resources more effectively than normal.
Tips For Longer Lasting PACs
You may think that the location where you put your unit will not matter, but it will. The location or position you have set for the portable air conditioner specifically influences its efficiency and lifespan.
It doesn’t mean you’re going to place it anywhere you choose. For a long time, you won’t work the machine once you choose the wrong spot.
Placing the unit in areas prone to dust can allow the engine to clog and eventually cause some system issues. Place the air cooler in a clean space and clean the machine regularly.
2. Exact Amount Of Power
To operate your portable air conditioner properly, you must ensure the right amount of power supply that it requires. Generally, a well-branded portable air conditioner needs a minimum of 120VAC.
Otherwise, the engine and air compressor won’t work properly. If you cannot make sure the correct amount of control, there is a strong possible chance of busted-fuse.
3. Regularly Change The Filters
More often than not, portable air conditioners come with one or even more filters for dirt and debris. It helps keep the inside of the machine clean and avoids overheating.
It is necessary to clean those filters, not every day, but at least once or twice a month. You can use a soft cloth and a mild abrasive to wipe off the dirt.
If you choose not to change the filters, the dust it has accumulated over the days will gradually store inside the unit. It will mix with the moisture and, sure enough, will cover the coil with layers of dust.
Eventually, the coil will malfunction. That is why it is necessary to change the filters regularly to keep your unit running for a long time.
4. Proper Storage
Commonly, portable A/Cs are used at most two seasons per year. So, what do owners do with them? They store it. Storing it does not mean you only cover it with a cloth and put it in the garage.
Proper storage is essential to keep the unit working when you want to use it again. Here are some tips on storing your units:
- Collect, drain, and dispose of all moisture inside the machine. Double-check to make sure no moisture is left. Moisture, if left, can create a mold that poses health risks.
- Do not immediately turn off the unit. Instead, could you set it to high-speed fan-only mode? Let it run for several hours before shutting off and storing. It will also ensure that no moisture is left inside the unit.
- Store the air conditioner in a cool and dry place.
- To prevent dust and dirt accumulation, cover the unit with a protective plastic sheet.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
Not Running At All
Like running your A/C 24/7, not running it at all will also cause damage. Turning off your unit when it is not needed is a good idea as it can save you money. But taking it too far is not.
If your room is vacant for a long time, do not just shut the A/C off. If you do so, do not expect it to run smoothly once you decide to operate it again.
The possibility of mold creeping in is high when your unit is shut idle. It may cause your unit to deteriorate.
You should run the unit every day. Run it for at least a few minutes to protect indoor air quality.
Not Using Ceiling Fans
Most people think that portable A/Cs are a substitute for the traditional ceiling fan. Portable A/Cs can sometimes need outside help to cool the room.
A ceiling fan will help your unit distribute cold air. It will help you save on monthly utility bills and reduce the wear and tear on the unit.
Invest in a good ceiling fan that creates a wind chill effect. It will help your unit make the room cooler. It will also make you feel more comfortable at a slightly higher temperature.
Do not just buy any ceiling fan you see. Look for an Energy Star-rated ceiling fan to get the most out of your unit. Also, make sure to put it in the downflow setting during cooling seasons.
Some fans have reverse features that help your heat pump or furnace during the heating season, too!
Remember that your portable air conditioner is not an all-or-nothing investment. Be smart when using PAC to stay comfortable while saving money.
Run it according to the manual to make it last for more than its supposed life. The better care you give to your unit, the longer it can last.