All About Air Conditioning

Single or split air conditioner? Split air conditioner or multisplit? And what power? How many BTU and watts per m²? Between small silent air conditioners and wall-mounted air conditioners, we make the point in this guide to help you choose the best air conditioning for your home.

What you need to know to choose an air conditioner

How an air conditioner works

Like a refrigerator, air conditioning works by using a refrigerant to take heat from the indoor air and expel it to the outside. If you opt for a reversible air conditioner, the device can, in heating mode, take the heat outside and release it inside the home.

The 4 main characteristics of an air conditioner

You can choose between two types of air conditioners:

single-package air conditioners, less expensive but less powerful and noisier;
split air conditioners are more powerful and capable of cooling several rooms, but also more expensive.

Several criteria are then to be taken into account:

  • The cooling power must be adapted to your needs.
  • The energy performance and the air conditioning must be the least energy-consuming possible.
  • The sound level, preferred low to reduce the nuisances.
  • The different air treatments.

You will also have to take into account the installation constraints of the indoor and possibly outdoor units, as well as the maintenance constraints.

Single-package air conditioner: ducted air conditioning

As its name indicates, the packaged air conditioner is composed of a single element that contains the entire refrigeration circuit. It is placed in the room where you want to capture heat, which is then rejected to the outside via a flexible duct. This sheath slides into a drain or, failing that, into the opening of a door or window.

An inexpensive air conditioner for small volumes

Designed for small rooms (less than 30 m²), the packaged air conditioner is inexpensive to buy and easy to install. But it is also relatively noisy and unable to cool large volumes.

Split and multi-split air conditioner: the wall-mounted air conditioner

The split air conditioner consists of two units:

  • an indoor unit, which most often takes the form of a block or a walled cassette;
  • an outdoor unit, both connected by small diameter ducts.

Multi-split, the air conditioner has several indoor units to air condition a very large volume or several rooms. More discreet and less noisy than a monobloc model, a split air conditioner is also more powerful, but more expensive.

Reversible air conditioning: the heat pump PAC

The reversible air conditioner works in the same way as a “classic” air conditioner but can reverse its refrigeration cycle to produce not cold air but hot air.

Air-to-air heat pump

Just like an air-to-air heat pump, the air conditioner takes the calories present in the outside air to restore them inside the room or rooms. Because of its greater complexity, it must be installed by a professional from Roanoke Star.

Fixed air conditioning: the air conditioning with interior cassette

Fixed, the air conditioner remains in the same room, avoiding any manipulation. In the case of a ductable split air conditioner, the ducts can be hidden in a wall or a false ceiling for total discretion.

Mobile air conditioning: monobloc or split air conditioning?

Both packaged and split air conditioners can be mobile.

In the first case, only the indoor unit, mounted on wheels, can be moved. In the second case, the two units, connected by a flexible and disconnectable duct, are mobile. However, a split air conditioner remains difficult to move.

Which cooling capacity to choose for my air conditioner

How many BTUs or watts for what room volume

The cooling capacity of an air conditioner is calculated in British Thermal Units (BTU) and expressed in watts, knowing that 1 W = 3,414 BTU. This cooling capacity determines the ability of an air conditioner to cool a given volume. If this power is undersized, the air conditioner will have to be used longer for reduced performance. Conversely, if it is oversized, the air conditioner will consume more energy unnecessarily. If you want to determine the required power on your own, a minimum power of 100 W per m² or 50 W per cubic meter is required.