Are you from those people who cannot stand the heat in the summer? Or maybe you get blue with cold when you realize winter is coming? It is Ok to have season preferences but what we believe you might be actually worried about is how to avoid fluctuating temperatures in your home and have low electricity bills at the same time.
This is why our team is here to give you lots of useful tips and advice in this thorough guide about the most energy-efficient air conditioner. We have also included some reviews of air conditioning products with cost-effective power consumption to make your choice easier. And all you have to do is scroll down and get yourself fully informed.
What is a Good Efficient Window AC?
When you choose a home cooling unit, it might be challenging for you to notice the differences between all models. For the inexperienced buyer, the products will look the same as well as the features they go with. However, there is a wide range from quiet window air conditions to portable AC models. This is the reason why we have compiled a list with some essential characteristics along with explanations of their importance in terms of efficiency.
Essentials of Energy Efficient AC
Energy Star Rating
This is perhaps one of the most important things to look for because units that are Energy Star rated will surely cut your electricity bills. This is an official and independent rating to guarantee the efficiency of your AC and therefore, your purchase will be up to 10% more energy-efficient.
Another feature to check before buying a window AC is the thermostat. The reason for this is the thermostat’s function to keep the air conditioner within the defined temperature range by turning on and off your window cooling device automatically. Therefore, you will definitely not end up with a unit that works all the time and consumes a lot of power.
All air conditioners come with filters since the latter is essential for the quality of air in the room as well as serve as a protection from small particles getting inside the air conditioner’s body. To make use of your unit efficiently, you need to make sure the filters are not dirty or blocked with dust. Moreover, out-of-order filters will make cooling very difficult, and your air conditioner will require extra power to reach the set temperature. And this will undoubtedly lead to an unfavorable balance to your electricity bills. Another thing is the types of HVAC filters – some can be washed at home with soapy water, others are standard and should be replaced when worn out. Moreover, some units come with a filter reminder to immediately let you know if you need to clean it.
Programming your AC timer on the remote control is an advisable thing to do to save energy and have your home cooled at the same time. You should simply set the timer for turning on or off your unit, especially when you are away from home. This way, the air conditioner will not operate when you do not need it but sustain the temperature you want. You can even calculate how much you can save with an energy-efficient cooling system.
Adjustable Fan Speed
Most window air conditioners come with 2 or 3-speed options, varying from low to high. We think you will really benefit from such a feature because fan speed control determines how quickly your room will get chilly. And the faster the indoor space gets colder, the less energy your unit will use. Also, the noise from the fan can vary, for example, if your window AC is set at high speed, it will not be as quiet as when placed at a low rate.
Why You Should Buy an Energy-Efficient AC
So far we have thoroughly explained and given you food for thought about air conditioners’ productivity, features, and special abbreviations used for rating ACs efficiency. However, now our team is going to introduce you to some distinct benefits of installing an energy-efficient air conditioner. Moreover, we will add an apt description of why they are considered benefits.
Enhanced cooling or heating performance
High-quality ACs can operate at a better rate which means that warming or cooling down your room will be faster. Also, the power consumption will not be that much since energy-efficient units are economical.
New models of air conditioners are not only energy-efficient but also are manufactured in such a way as to be quiet. And that means mounting an AC in your bedroom, for example, will not disturb your sleep.
Helping the environment
Once you make your home energy-efficient, you will surely improve the environmental footprint. When using less power consumption for cooling or heating your house, this will lead to decreased levels of carbon dioxide and therefore help preserve the natural world.
The longevity of the unit
Today’s energy-efficient air conditioners are made of excellent materials and are equipped with advanced features and technologies. Therefore, an AC’s performance is set to last longer, and this way you will not need to constantly buy new units to sustain your desired temperature at home. Moreover, many ACs’ manufacturers provide a guarantee for their product making you feel safe and contented about the purchase.
Adjustable operation modes
To get an economic advantage of your cost-effective air conditioner, there is an energy-saving mode and a filter reminder to serve your needs and reduce your utility bills. These two features are extremely beneficial. Thus, you do not spend almost half of your monthly income on heating or cooling your home. Especially, when you are out and want an average temperature inside. The ability to turn on the eco-mode is undoubtedly a pro as well as knowing when to change the filter.
Create a cozy and productive atmosphere
Our home is our fortress as the saying goes and this is entirely true for establishing a comfortable environment in the place where we are living. And when temperatures drop or during a heatwave, the atmosphere at home can get really tense. It is proven that hot rooms without air conditioning stop your brain working properly and hence the family members at your house can easily get irritated, nervous, or edgy. Such a situation will definitely ruin the peace and quiet at your home.
Most Energy Efficient Air Conditioners Comparison Chart
Heat & Cool Klimaire 9,000 BTU Inverter Mini-Split AC
|See On Heat & Cool
Senville SENA-24HF/Z Energy Star Mini Split Air Conditioner
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Friedrich Chill Series CP10G10B Window Air Conditioner
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GE AEM05LX 19″ Window Air Conditioner
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Koldfront WAC6002WCO Window Air Conditioner
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DELLA 10,000 BTU Window Air Conditioner
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Most Energy Efficient Air Conditioner Reviews
Here we have made up a list of some of the most cost-effective air conditioners to give you an insight into what you can find on the market.
1. Heat & Cool Klimaire 9,000 BTU Inverter Mini-Split AC
Here we have a unit that boasts quite the efficiency ratings as it may save you up to 50% energy during the winter. This is due to the inverter technology which allows you to use this mini-split AC as your primary heat source or a supplemental one. What we love about the unit is the fact that constant thermostat adjustments will not be necessary. The variable speed tech makes that possible.
The other basic functions such as fan speed, sleep and turbo are nothing to get excited about but at least they are present. What is pretty cool is the auto clean function. Mildew growth will be significantly reduced thanks to it and the air quality will definitely be improved. This goes to show us that the product is efficient not only when it comes to energy saving but to sanitation and air quality as well.
We also liked the memory function which will restore your settings upon a power outage. The outdoor unit of this mini-split system is also a very neat piece of machinery. It comes with a 25-foot copper tubing while most other units come with shorter ones and you have to buy extensions separately. The warranty on the compressor is a 5-year one.
2. Senville SENA-24HF/Z Energy Star Mini Split Air Conditioner
For next product, here we have a product capable of cooling and heating a substantial amount of indoor space –from 1250 to 1500 sq feet. This is because the Senville air conditioner comes with a super powerful Toshiba compressor with a SEER of 22 and HSPF of 11.50. Also, the compressor is pre-charged for up to 25-inch set which means that the Freon is already stored in the unit. Moreover, the input power of this product reaches 1920w when cooling your area and 2500w when you switch it on a heating mode.
That being said, this air conditioner will not only make your electricity bills much bearable but will also give you perfect performance. Another great feature is the remote control which has a built-in thermostat. This way you can set the desired temperature and leave the rest to your unit- it will automatically switch off when the chosen degree of heat or coolness is reached. However, the lowest temperature setting you can select is 62°F.
- Energy Star and AHRI certified
- 3 years warranty on parts
- 7 years warranty on compressor
- Dehumidification mode
- Too large to be used as a camper unit
- No Wi-Fi control
3. Friedrich Chill Series CP10G10B Window Air Conditioner
The money-saving settings of this product are what has caught our attention. The Friedrich Chill Series window AC is a super quiet unit that comes with 4-way airflow and a fan that works only when needed. It can cool down space of up to 450 sq feet due to its 10000 BTU and what is more, the temperature might be set from 60°F to 86°F. Furthermore, this product’s louvers can swing left and right during the cooling process.
However, if you are not so fond of this option, there is no problem to turn off the auto-swing feature. Also, this window AC does not drip inside, but in case you wish to install a plastic tube for this purpose, you can easily find the sealing plug and insert the tube there. And another great thing about this unit is the antimicrobial filters that are washable as well.
- Energy Star rated
- Power cord flexibility
- 11.3 EER
- 1-year warranty for parts
- The timer has to be mechanically set to turn on/off every day
- Extra bracket needed for mounting the unit as it is too heavy
4. DELLA 10,000 BTU Window Air Conditioner
If you are looking for a unit that has high cooling power, then the DELLA window air conditioner might be your wise choice. With its 10000BTU this product can cool down even a small apartment because it is designed to evenly distribute the air in indoor spaces of up to 450 sq feet. What is more, this window AC can do that in less than 15 minutes. And what we find really convenient is the fact that there are side panels to prevent any air leaks from going outside.
Another practical feature of this product is its filters. They are very easy to maintain and also prevent dust and harmful microorganisms to spread across your room. The installation kit has everything you need as well. However, the remote is a little ill-thought-out since there are only buttons to control the unit, and hence if you forget what temperature you have set for it, you will have to go to your window AC to catch a glimpse of its display.
- Temperature can be set from 61°F to 88°F
- 12.1 EER
- Energy Star rated
- 2-way air direction control
- The remote control has no display
- No anti-mildew protection
5. GE AEM05LX 19″ Window Air Conditioner
Our next product is ideal for long hot days because it is made to cool down your room in no time. The GE window AC is the perfect choice for your bedroom or kitchen because it can make a cold space of about 200 sq feet. Also, it comes with 5200BTU cooling capacity and 10.7 energy efficiency ratios for your most cost-effective power supply bill. Besides, this compact AC is 20.9375x 12.75×15.72 inches in size which makes it easy to fit almost any space under your windows.
What is more, this unit has some great features to offer except for its productivity and economical of space measurements. There are 3 cooling speeds and 24 hours on/off timer. Furthermore, the energy saver mode and the electronic digital thermostat in this window AC will ensure the chosen temperature is always steady without blowing cold air constantly. As for the maintenance of the product, we can assure you that the filters can be taken out without effort and cleaned with warm water and soap.
- 115 V
- UL Certified
- Energy Star qualified
- Easy mount installation
- Only for cooling
- You have to press a button on the remote to activate the display
6. DELLA 9,000 BTU 115V- 15.5 SEER Ductless System Mini Split
Our next top pick is a mini-split AC again, but this unit has some convenient features to cut your electricity bills, and it is super quiet as well. First, the DELLA mini split AC comes with 15.5 SEER and 8.2 HSPF to help you reduce the power consumption. Furthermore, you can control the speed of the fan in 3 different modes or choose an auto setting for the airflow.
Also, the efficient features of this product will give you the opportunity to use some very functional methods like the ECO and healthy ones to make sure the unit turns off when the needed temperature is reached. Another great thing about this AC is the fact that it comes pre-charged and hence ready to be used after the installation. Finally, there is a thorough user manual to help you with the unit’s available operational and functional modes to enjoy the hot or cold air coming from this product.
- 1-year warranty
- AHRI certified
- Auto swing air swipe
- Battery and clock indicator on the remote control
- Requires installation by a professional
7. Koldfront WAC6002WCO Window Air Conditioner
The Koldfront window AC is another compact cooling device with 6050BTU which makes it perfect for rooms sized up to 250sq feet. This product comes with the standard features for a window air conditioner like 3 fan speed, digital display, and remote control. But, there is something that really grabbed our attention, and these are the extra options you will get the energy-saving feature and the dry function.
The fan of this unit can cycle for 2 minutes at a 10-minute interval to keep your desired temperature and at the same time sustain cost-effective power consumption. And when you choose the dry mode, this window AC will stick to the preset temperature while removing the excessive moisture. Another thing is the check filter option with which you will always know when the filters need cleaning. We all know that dirty filters increase the energy your unit uses to keep your room cold and therefore you may end up running up a massive electricity bill.
- Energy Star rated
- 12.1 EER
- 16 feet range of the remote control
- Package includes all-weather sealers and installation hardware
- Can be a little noisy
- Thermostat feature is influenced by outside temperature
8. Senville SENL-09CD 15 SEER Split Air Conditioner
If you want a product to both cool down and warm up your desired room and your space is not bigger than 400 sq ft, then this Senville AC is just for you. With its 9000BTU capacity, it will definitely serve your needs. Also, its whisper technology will certainly make it suitable for bedrooms and working places to sustain quietness. Moreover, the temperature settings range from 60°F at its lowest to 86°F at the highest. Therefore this unit suits any would-be customers that are difficult to please.
As for the energy consumption, let us just say that this AC comes with 10 EER and 15.2 SEER and cooling input power is 1000w while the heating is 890w. However, there is no information provided by the manufacturer whether this product is Energy Star rated. Besides, it is a good idea to keep the unit on, especially when temperatures are below -5°F, because there is a chance for the outdoor unit to freeze.
- 1L/hr moisture removal
- digital LED display
- 5-year warranty on Toshiba compressor
- 1-year warranty on parts
- No thermostat requires buying an additional one
- No heat strip for back up heat
Must-Have AC Features
The following features are not related to power efficiency but rather to your personal comfort. So, we think you should be aware of them, too.
Although nearly all window ACs go with remotes in the package, there are some characteristics of the clicker which you may find extremely practical.
- Display – an excellent feature for checking your temperature setting without going to the AC’s operating body.
- LED light to easily see in the dark.
- A built-in thermostat in the remote is the most convenient thing to have. You can always place the clicker in a warmer room to automatically turn on the cool airflow from your air conditioner.
Air Direction Control
It is always better to have more options to direct the airflow from the cooling unit. The adjustable louvers can be set in such positions as to blow air in your desired direction. This is especially good if you have a desk, for example, in the room and you have to spend a lot of time working on it. Nobody wants stiff necks or backs caused by an air conditioner.
Cooling Power or What Is BTU?
You may have noticed that the BTU abbreviation appears next to every window AC’s operating characteristics. And the number before the three capital letters is the most important to look at. Why is that?
First, BTU is the short form of British Thermal Power, and it is used for measuring purposes. In other words, this is the amount of heat needed to increase the temperature of 1 pound water with 1°F. Hence, the higher the BTU numbers your window AC has, the bigger the room it can cool down. Second, BTU is directly related to the energy efficiency rates (EER) of your unit since larger BTU numbers will require more power. And finally, to reduce your electricity bills, you should also check the number for the EER. The higher this number is, the less power consumption you will have.
How to Find the Right BTU for Your Room
The next step to getting the most of your window AC is your room measurements and some other conditions that should be taken into account. And here the BTU number will play a key role because your room size will depend on it. There are many charts available on the Net giving you a rough idea of how to check the recommended BTU based on your room size. We will reveal the secret formula for more precision.
Here are the steps:
- Measure the square footage of the target room.
- Multiply it by 30.
- Then add 2000.
- Get the right BTU number for your desired indoor space.
For example, if your bedroom is your target room and it is 160 sq ft, then you have 160 multiplied by 30 which equals 4800. Then you add 2000, and the result is 6800 BTU. So, in this case, a window AC with 7000BTU will do the job.
However, if you want a cooling device for your kitchen, the number you add in step 3 should be 4000, not 2000. This is because you have to compensate for the heat coming from your kitchen appliances, especially the oven.
Other Factors to Consider When Buying The Right Size AC
Now that you know how to calculate the right BTU for your room have a look at the other essential things to consider.
- The height of your room
If the ceilings are taller, then you will need a higher BTU. This is because the room cooling space is going to get bigger and in case you do not think about that, your cooling unit will need more power to reach the set temperature. And this is entirely not efficient.
- Room position
Believe it or not, but it is essential to know whether your room is facing south or north. If in your target indoor space is usually sunny throughout the day; therefore the place itself will be a bit warmer than average. So, you should either install your window AC in a shady corner or get an air cooling device with more BTU than calculated.
On the other hand, if the room is facing north, then you do not need to add extra BTU to what you have already calculated. In both cases, your goal is to save energy and pay less for electricity, while enjoying the cool room environment.
Energy Star – What Does It Mean For Air Conditioners?
Buying an air conditioner which is Energy Star rated can make a huge difference in the heating or cooling capacity of your AC as well as in your utility bills. For a product to be given such a rating, it needs to meet specific requirements that are set by the US Environmental Protection Agency. And if the guidelines are met, then you can expect to get an air conditioner with higher SEER and EER, necessary for reaching high energy efficiency of up to 8%.
What Is Considered a High-Efficiency Air Conditioner?
Here we are going to give you an insight at what to look at for each air conditioner as well as some extra information on the specifications needed for an efficient AC. Moreover, we have made a list according to the type of these devices.
Split System AC
A split system AC is good for those looking for an affordable way to cool their home. For a heat pump air conditioner to be effective in terms of efficiency, quality, and budget-friendly bills, the seasonal heating performance (HSPF) should equal or be less than 8.5.
Also, there is a necessity for the full amount of warm air that is to be removed from the conditioned space. For example, in the summer, which should be 15 or more than this number. Therefore, the seasonal energy efficiency ratio or SEER will show you how efficient your AC will be when you turn it on a cooling mode.
Also, the energy efficiency ratio (EER) of your AC must be 12.5 or more to be completely efficient. In other words, the higher the EER, the more energy-saving is the air conditioner. Also, this ratio is essential because it indicates how well the cooling system will work when the outside temperature is really high.
Window air conditioners are used for cooling, so the EER is also crucial in this case. However, there is another thing to consider, and this is the combined energy efficiency ratio (CEER). This is the energy that is used when your AC is on as well as in standby mode. It is also important to mention that even when your air conditioner is plugged in, it still consumes energy. Having an Energy Star certified room air conditioner will surely save you electrical power as it uses less than 10% compared to other ACs. Nevertheless, there is a difference between the required CEER for units with louvers and without ones.
- Cooling AC without louvers
Depending on the BTU of your window AC, different CEER levels should be noticed when aiming at maximum efficiency. For air conditioners with BTU varying between 8000 and 10 999, the combined energy efficiency ratio should be at least 12, while with BTU from 11 000 to 13999, the CEER is 11.8. For larger BTU units like those bigger than 20000, the CEER is even lower -10.3.
- Cooling AC with louvers
Louvers help control the airflow of the air conditioner and can be stationary or adjustable. However, the specifications of your cooling unit with these flat sloping pieces of plastic also depend on the BTU. If it is between 8000 and 10999, then the combined energy efficiency ratio is no more than 10.6. For models with a power of 11000 to 13999, the used energy drops by 10.2. And finally, for units with more than 20000 BTU, the rate is 10.3.
- Cooling AC without louvers
Another energy-efficient feature to boost the productiveness and make the air conditioner cost-effective is the energy saver or eco-mode. This function actually relies on the unit’s quick calculation of how to adjust the run of the fan and the cooling system efficiency and therefore reduce the power consumption. This action will help you have lower use of electricity in the long run.
This feature is convenient and beneficial for several reasons. First of all, you will always know when it is time to clean or change the filters. You should never ignore this action since dust and filth stuck in the device for preventing fine particles getting into the AC will decrease its productivity and increase power consumption. Secondly, as window ACs blow air, all the dust can be sent back to the room you are heating or cooling and therefore worsen the air quality you breathe. Moreover, not maintaining it the right way, your air conditioner may become the reason for your asthma attacks or intensify your allergies. Make sure to also check out our air purifiers for allergies buyers guide.
How to Use Air Conditioners Economically
No matter how good your AC is, there are more ways to make your home energy-efficient and enhance the productivity of your unit. Here we are going to give you some tips and practical advice.
- Windows are an easy way for the heat to come inside, so having thick curtains or blinds are very important.
- Sealing doors and windows is a great thing to do to boost the energy-efficiency at home. When it is freezing cold outside, the additional protection on your doors and windows will stop the warmth created by your AC to get outside. And in the summer, the heat will not get into your room because of the sealing. This way the work of your air conditioner will be cost and power-effective. Finally, do not forget to close the door of the room with the unit, so that the airflow circulates when needed.
- Another tip is to run your unit at certain hours of the day during the summer. The most appropriate moment is between 10 am and 5 pm when the sun is scorching the most. If you do this, then you can cool down your room in this period and keep the cold air for the rest of the day.
- With mini-split air conditioners, the outdoor condenser should be in the shade to prevent overheating and to endure the lifespan of the device.
- When you know that you will be absent for more than an hour from home, you should either turn off the AC or switch to a power-saving mode to sustain the desired temperature. Also, you may wish to lower it with 1 or 2 degrees in order to decrease power consumption. This way your energy bills will be down while enjoying the coolness or warmth of your room when you get back.
- Cleaning the filters and the furnace is essential for the optimal performance of the unit. In case your device does not go with a filter reminder, make sure to wipe it regularly.
- Setting the right temperature during the summer and winter is also essential for using your air conditioner economically. Although personal temperature preferences vary from person to person, there are some guidelines for recommended thermostat settings. In winter it is preferable to switch it to 72°F, while in summertime 68°F might be enough to feel comfortable.
If you want to know more about our experience, useful advice and hot tips about HVAC Systems, do not hesitate to check it out.
Useful Frequently Asked Questions
We know how important it is to find solutions when it comes to newly installed air conditioners, so our team has prepared a list of the most common questions you may ask while owning an AC. If you still experience the same issues, you should definitely turn to a qualified technician.
- Why doesn’t my unit turn on?
A very typical problem is to try to start your cooling device and find out that you can’t actually do it.
First, check your main fuse box and if this is the problem, then reset the fuse.
Make sure that the outside compressor is not switched off.
- Why doesn’t my system blow out heated or chilled air?
There are several reasons for your air conditioner to stop operating and here are some of our suggestions. First, it might be low levels of refrigerant. Second, there can be a lack of airflow.
If the AC system is low in a refrigerant, then you must immediately switch off the air conditioning system and call your qualified technician.
In case there is no airflow, then check whether the airflow system for clogged dust. If this is the case, make sure to clean the filters and the louvers thoroughly.
- Why is there ice on the coils of my air conditioner?
Finding the coils frozen is a spot for the bother. It is a sign of low gas or a gas leak. Call your air conditioner technician right away.
- My unit is making strange or loud noises. What does it mean?
This might be a relatively small problem, but it shouldn’t be ignored. If you let your unit run without getting it fixed, you will do a lot of expensive damage.
- How often should I clean my air conditioner?
Once a month would be the most reasonable answer in this case. However, you should bear in mind that if you smoke in the room where your air conditioner is mounted or if you live with furry pets, you might need to clean the filters more often. Dirty filters will reduce the productivity of your unit, increase power consumption, and also worsen the air quality in the room. Consider investing in an AC coil cleaner.
- How often should I get my AC checked by a technician? Why should I do it at all?
It is recommended to have your air conditioner maintained once a year. The reason for this is to ensure the optimal performance of the unit. A qualified technician will check the Freon, the filters, and fix any problems if any.
- Can I leave my window AC installed during the winter?
When the summer season is over and more relaxed days come, our window cooling systems are no longer put in use. So it is easier to let it stay mounted for the next hot summer. In order to do this, you should check the user’s guide for additional information on this issue. For some models, it is not recommended to be exposed to wet and cold weather conditions as they can damage the unit.
Still, if you decide to let the window air conditioner stay through the winter, make sure to cover it with a plastic cover and seal it carefully.
Last, but not least our exclusively cost-effective systems for space heating are worth checking if you wish to find out some more information, advice, and expert help for making your home energy efficient.
This is the end of our guide. We really hope that now you are well-prepared with the up-to-date knowledge to make the best choice for the most energy-efficient air conditioners for your home. Our team has not spared any effort or energy when collecting and compiling the information to please our readers and future AC owners. However, if you are still not sure what to choose, feel free to go back to our product reviews in this guide.
As always, we are open to your feedback and would appreciate any comment left by you. If you liked the article, show it to your friends or share it online. Let us know if anything can be changed or improved. Thanks for reading and as always – stay put!