We've all seen them - the supermarket split type air conditioners - at what seems like an incredible price.
But the old adage still remains true - "You get what you pay for".
A good analogy for this is the cheap computer printer. It seems like such great value until you come to replace the ink cartridge - which often costs more than the printer itself!
Don't get me wrong - we still happily sell the cheaper units - but it's only responsible of us to inform you of the advantages and disadvantages of using price as your number one criteria for choosing a unit.
We prefer to substitute the word "price" with "value for money" - and this is when the "Inverter" type air conditioner suddenly starts looking attractive.
To put it simply - Inverters cost more money to buy, but are more efficient to run, which saves you money on your energy costs, which makes them better "value for money" over all.
Another advantage to Inverters is they are quieter than conventional "Fixed Speed" aircon units due to the way they achieve their efficiency.
So whats the Difference?
What is a Fixed Speed Unit?
This unit only has a single speed compressor motor that is either on or off.
It works similar to a fan heater that switches off when the desired temperature is reached and on again when the temperature drops to a set level.
What does Inverter Mean?
Inverter technology uses a variable speed compressor motor similar to a car. It simply slows down and speeds up as needed to hold a selected comfort setting.
Inverter technology provides a more precise room temperature without the temperature fluctuations of fixed speed systems.
Inverter vs Standard:
Fixed Speed Type
There's a but?
To get these efficiency gains it is important to use the air conditioner as it is intended:
the unit has to be sized right for the room you are heating/cooling
it is best to run the unit continuously and set for the desired room temperature (i.e. such as 21 Celcius) and not at a full setting for heating or cooling (as most people do)
and of course - a well insulated, low-thermal mass villa helps too...