A Complete Guide For Buying, Using And Maintaining Your Aircon System

The hot and humid weather of Singapore is usually either hated or loved by Singaporeans. Some love it for the fun, warm sunshine and summer while others see it as a place of sweat and discomfort.

In the climate of Singapore, the requirement of an aircon system to bear the scorching heat of summers is a constant for all. As soon as the summer approaches in Singapore, we all start to clean, upgrade and sometimes install new aircon units to maintain the comfort of our homes and workspaces.

It is also the time when many of us realize face the need to replace or get an additional aircon. Times like these help us realize how difficult choosing an efficient aircon system can be.

If you lack the technical know-how and are in the need of getting a new aircon system, then have a look at the following points.

Selecting The Right Aircon System To Buy

When you enter the market, you will find a lot of model and brands of aircon, such as Daikin or Mitsubishi, and each of them are equipped with attractive features.

However, before buying any of them, you have to ensure that the aircon is efficient enough to provide proper cooling for your home. In addition to that, budget will be another important influencer of your buying decision.

While you factor in your budget and requirement, allow us to guide you through the technical aspects so that you can reach a wise decision.

Enlisted below are different parameters that you must check before going for an aircon installation.

Consider The Cooling Area And Its Heat Sources

Air-conditioning systems come in different cooling capacities, and you have to decide the ones that can work in your place.

If your aircon’s cooling capacity is lower than required, the cooling system will have to run for an extended period to maintain the temperature, and you will end up with high electricity bills. The other side effect is that the area will not be cold.

On the other hand, if you go for an aircon with more than required capacity, you will have to invest more.

Therefore, check the area of your place and the heat sources around it before selecting any aircon.

One way of calculating the required capacity is to divide the area of your site by 600 and then add 0.5 to it for every person living in that place. If the room temperature of your location goes beyond 45 degrees during summer, you can add 0.5 for that too. This calculation will give you an approximate value of the required aircon in tons (the unit of aircon capacity).

Another method is by calculating the aircon BTU of the unit before installation. More on that in a while.

Types Of Aircons And Their Installation

As the summer gets closer, lots of homeowners start thinking about an effective way to escape from the heat. Whether you’re tired of your old window aircon or you’re a first-time buyer, it may be a good idea to pick a central or ductless air conditioning system for your home.

Of course, there are various new models on the market and you’ll have plenty of options to consider. When it comes to aircon installation, it is best to consult professionals like us regarding the efficiency of the different aircon brands as well as what type of aircon you should get for your room or unit.

While the central aircon systems can cool your entire home, the wall-mounted units are a more versatile and compact alternative that can easily cool a room or a zone.

Since both systems can effectively deal with the sweltering summer heat, it all depends on your personal needs and preferences. However, make sure you have some basic knowledge of the pros and cons of different types of aircon.

Window Aircon System

This aircon is a relatively older type that comprises just one unit. It has a high BTU cooling capacity and can cool almost any room very effectively. However, it also consumes a lot of energy that can make the electricity bills spike.

Its installation is a lengthy and difficult process. You have to install the aircon in an opening in the wall. First, the technician will tear the wall to make an opening of the same size as that of the aircon. He will then install the aircon in this opening.

After installation, he has to seal the edges to ensure proper insulation. You might have to paint the wall later on if it was damaged during the making of the hole and installation. All these steps make it a technical as well as a time-consuming process.

Helpful Read: Wonder Why Your Aircon isn’t Blowing Cold Air? Here’s Why

Duct Less Aircon System: How Do They Operate?

Also referred to as mini-splits or multi-splits, ductless aircon units are much simpler – they only have an outdoor and an indoor unit. There’s a small conduit of wiring and piping that connects the units. Basically, each indoor unit cools a single room or a zone. Therefore, there’s no need for ductwork. Multi-split systems allow several indoor units to connect with one outdoor panel.

Compared to central air conditioners, ductless systems, also known as mini-splits, are simpler systems. Ductless systems have just two parts: an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. As with central AC systems, piping and electrical wiring connect the indoor and outdoor units.

Each indoor unit cools a single room or an isolated space, and no ductwork is necessary. Ductless systems can match a single outdoor unit with a single indoor unit, or some models can allow several indoor units to be operated from a single outdoor unit.

You might also want to consider choosing a ductless or central aircon system. Each system has its own benefits and disadvantages.

The Perks of a Ductless Aircon System?

The biggest perk of ductless aircon systems is that no matter the number of indoor units, each comes with its thermostat. This allows individual climate control for every room in your home. Apart from that, ductless systems are flexible and efficient. When you get accustomed to a ductless unit, you’ll hardly notice its operation because of the low noise level.

If you’re looking for a way to heat your home throughout the winter, some ductless systems come with a heat pump. Combined with the invert-compressor technology, these aircon units are easily among the most versatile and efficient air conditioning systems. Besides, the installation is easy and doesn’t require ductwork.

The Downsides of Ductless Aircon Systems

The main downside of ductless aircon systems is probably the installation options. Since the indoor unit has to be near or attached to a wall, this can be a problem in rooms with a bad location. Moreover, some homeowners simply dislike the look of an indoor unit mounted on their wall or ceiling.

Central Cooling Unit: How Do They Work?

To begin with, central aircon units are big systems, each consisting of an outdoor unit, an indoor unit, and ductwork. The standard procedure employs the outdoor unit, where the air is cooled by the evaporator coil.

The cooled air is then transferred back to your home through the furnace or air handler in your mechanical area.

We prefer central cooling units for clients who need temperature control for the whole building or house throughout the year. This system consists of a large compressor that generates air blow, and networks of ducts to distribute the air.

The best thing about this aircon system is that it’s adjustable for winters too. We can set it to blow hot air during the winters.

In Singapore, where the weather climate is warm all year long, it is important to show care for your aircon unit compressors as well. Compressors are in charge of cooling your home and it will be a huge procedure if you were to replace or repair them.

What are the Advantages of a Central Aircon System?

The biggest advantage of central aircon systems is their ability to condition the air of an entire home. They feature a smart thermostat that can easily optimize the temperature settings with minimal manual interference.

You can check the settings and look at the energy report from your smartphone. Generally, all you need is one system, but you can always attach additional machines like air purifiers or humidifiers to further enhance the level of air quality, so you won’t have to worry about your aircon smelling bad.

The Disadvantages of Central Aircon Systems

Speaking of air quality, the biggest drawback of central aircon systems is their limited ability to control temperature and comfort individually for every room. Even though some systems have separate thermostatic controls for every zone, the results are still unsatisfactory. As a result, a lot of homes are left with hot or cold spots.

Helpful read: What Is Aircon Chemical Wash And Why Is It Important?

Packaged Aircon System

When you need cooling for more than one room with a single cooling system, packaged aircon are a great option. This single-unit aircon has an inlet and outlet of ducts that it uses to transfer cold air to your place. We usually recommend this aircon system for small offices, halls, and apartments.

Portable Aircon

Portable air-conditioners are compact devices which need no complicated installation or stationary fixing to work. It has a flexible pipe which goes out through a window or other opening. The aircon will use this pipe to circulate the air and provide cooling. There are no fixing or mounting requirements.

The only downsides are its limited capacity and noisy operation.  

Installing the Aircon System And Its Importance

Aircon installation is not that complex, but it needs precision, experience, and skills. Even a slight mistake in this part will have drastic effects on its working efficiency, life and can increase damage occurrence.

We also have to adopt different techniques and have to use many advanced tools. Like for the window aircon, we have a frame and holding unit, whereas for a central aircon we need vents and ducts. We also have to consider a lot of other factors like location, airflow, the drainage system, and more, before placing the aircon anywhere.

Correct installation of an aircon is very important as it plays a significant role in how well the aircon will function later on. Proper installation will cause the aircon to work smoothly without overheating or using more energy than required.

This smooth working of the aircon will add to its longevity. You can rest assured that with proper maintenance and servicing, your aircon unit will continue to function optimally for many years to come.

Helpful Read: Factors That Can Affect Your Aircon Efficiency

Aircon Installation: How Is It Done

  • The first step in the process of installation is to call a professional company who will send their skilled technicians with all the right tools and equipment to carry out the installation for you.
  • The technicians will then inspect the area where the aircon is to be installed. In the case of a split aircon, they will determine the location of the indoor unit as well as the outdoor unit. They will install the indoor unit at a location where it should ideally be 6-8 foot above the ground to maximize its performance. They will also consider the aircon proximity to the electrical socket.
  • The technician will also determine the location of the outdoor unit. Ideally, it should be at a shaded spot with lots of open space around it. The outdoor unit can be quite heavy, so he will choose a strong wall for mounting it.
  • If the outdoor unit is far away from the indoor unit, extra ducts and wires may be used to connect both the units.
  • The technician will then carry out the steps needed to install the aircon that is specific to that particular model and brand. These will usually be detailed in the instructions and installation manual.
  • Once he has mounted the indoor and outdoor units on the wall, the technician will insulate the AC so that the cold air cannot escape from any of the edges or cracks.
  • After insulation of the aircon completes, the technician will check for any leakages or any other apparent problem. If everything looks normal, he will turn on the aircon and check its performance for some time.
  • Once he is sure that everything is functioning correctly, his job will be finished.

As for the price of installing, it will depend on many different factors like:

Types of Aircon System

We have to drill hole, connect tubes, braze them and set more than one unit for a split aircon system. For ducted aircon system like the packed or central aircon, we have to set a complex network of metal ducts for air circulation. While the window aircons need just a frame and some fasteners.

Therefore, we cannot set a standard price for aircon installation. It will depend upon the requirements of your aircon and several other factors.

Working Requirement

Installation of aircon sometimes needs installation of new vents and wiring too. Both of these extra work needs time and skills which means they will add to the installation cost. 

Number Of Units

The more units you have, the more will be the effort which we have to put. There will be an increase in brazing work, fixing and a lot of other tasks. Therefore, with every aircon unit, the installation cost will also increase.

One important metric to take into account is your aircon BTU. It is a measure of your air-conditioning units cooling power and can determine how many units you need for a room. You can read more about aircon BTU and its calculation here.

Complexity Of The System

If you need simple duct works and installation, it won’t need much expertise, but if you need a complex setup, it will need more specific knowledge. It will have a direct effect on the overall costing of the aircon installation.

Distance

In case of a split aircon system, more distance will mean more tubing work. The aircon may also need a gas top-up to compensate for the extra length. Therefore, the installation price will increase with the increasing distance of your indoor and outdoor unit.

Things That Can Go Wrong During Aircon Installation

There are some common mistakes that one should avoid during aircon installation that can adversely affect the aircon’s cooling capacity. Some of these are discussed below:

  • One of the most common things that can go wrong during aircon installation is choosing the wrong size as compared to the room. If the aircon capacity is too low as compared to the room size, it will not be able to cool the room properly and will cause the compressor to work non-stop. This non-stop working can make the compressor faulty and also increase electricity bills.
  • Another mistake that people usually make during installation is that they fail to secure the aircon with the proper necessary support. This can be very dangerous and should be avoided at all costs.
  • Proper installation of the aircon will ensure that there are no leakages. If you do not level the aircon, it can result in water overflowing from the overflow pan and consequently, affecting the aircon cooling.
  • During installation, if you do not insulate the aircon effectively, it will not be able to cool the room. This will cause the aircon to work harder than usual, which will not only increase the energy consumption but will also cause the aircon parts to overheat and falter over time.
  • You should install an aircon at such a location where it does not have to bear the harsh weather conditions. For example, if the outer unit is placed in direct sunlight, it will have to work much harder as compared to the situation where it was placed in a shaded spot.
  • After installation, you should check the aircon for any refrigerant leakages. If left unchecked, the leaked refrigerant can considerably lower the aircon’s performance.

All the above-mentioned problems reflect the importance of correctly installing an aircon to ensure its best performance and efficiency.

Taking Care Of The Aircon System

The aircon systems are very efficient in their working, but different factors influence it. We can help you to deal with some of them like filter replacement, repairing aircon broken parts, clogging, and more.

Still, there are practices you can consider for better working of your aircon system:

  • Avoid leaving the aircon system switched on while you are not present; this will give the system some time to rest and increase its lifespan.
  • A filthy aircon is prone to many problems like decreased efficiency, strained motors, overloading and more. Therefore, try to keep it clean and serviced.
  • Try to avoid heat-generating appliances while the aircon is running.
  • Direct sunlight on both indoor and outdoor unit affect their efficiency, so try to shade them from direct sunlight.
  • Even a small decrement in refrigerant can influence the aircon system. It is best if you keep an eye for the low refrigerant symptoms and call us for aircon gas top up when you notice them.

How to Clean Your Aircon System?

Over time the aircon system will face many different types of problem, and they all need specific solutions. Now, each of these solutions will need various tools, and methods. Therefore, the prices for each of them will differ.

Our prices for the standard aircon services are as following:

Normal cleaning

In routine aircon servicing, we dismantle your system and then use conventional methods to clean it. We wash dirt from its component clean its filters and remove clogging.

We also check for leakages and fix them during this process. The price of these cleaning services will depend upon the contract and number of aircon units. For one time services our aircon servicing price are:

Number of Aircon Unit 1 Time Service
1 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $40
2 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $50
3 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $70
4 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $85
5 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $100
6 Fancoil & above (c/w Condenser) $ 19 per unit

If you go for a yearly contract with three cleanups per year you will be paying:

Number of Aircon Unit Tri-yearly
2 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $146
3 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 196
4 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 236
5 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 286
6 Fancoil & above (c/w Condenser) $ 336

If you use the aircon system a lot and need four cleanups per year, you will be paying the following prices.

Number of Aircon Unit Quarterly
2 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 21.90 per unit / $175
3 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 17.90 per unit / $215
4 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 16.60 per unit / $265
5 Fancoil (c/w Condenser) $ 16.75 per unit / $335
6 Fancoil & above (c/w Condenser) $ 16.50 per unit / $395

There may be some variation in the end prices if your aircon has damages or need part replacement.

Chemical wash

Chemical washing is an ideal process for cleaning more accumulated aircon. We use unique solutions and precise methods to remove the dirt and other pollutants from the aircon system. The average prices you have to pay for this advanced aircon chemical wash service are:

Number of Aircon Unit 1 Time Service
1 Fancoil $80
2 Fancoil $150
3 Fancoil $210
4 Fancoil & above $ 65 per unit

In case of more than five fan coils you have to contact us for quotations.

Chemical overhauls

The chemical overhaul is a type of in-depth cleaning process. In this process, we dismantle the whole unit and chemically treat all the parts. Even the gaps between the fins get cleaned during the chemical overhauls.

The costs of getting a chemical overhaul for your aircon system are as following:

Number of Aircon Unit 1 Time Service
1 Fancoil $140
2 Fancoil $260
3 Fancoil & above $ 120 per unit

If you have more than four fan coils that need a chemical overhaul, let us know, and we will provide you the quotation.

Aircon Gas top-ups

The modern aircon units usually use only two types of refrigerant for working. We can provide you prices for both types of aircon gas top up:

R410A $60 – $150
R22 $40 – $120

The final price you have to pay will rise if there are leakages in the system. We have to find and fix them before filling the refrigerant.

Aircon Troubleshooting

The price for your aircon troubleshooting depends upon the replacement or repair it needs. We will let you know about it once we have analyzed your system for all the problems. If the issue doesn’t need any special attention or fixing you will still have to pay for transportation.

The prices of these services may seem a little higher than local aircon servicing dealers, but it’s worth it. We provide some additional benefits that the local dealers don’t offer.

For instance, we provide free inspection for your aircon system if you are under our maintenance contract and also offer 90 days warranty for every service we provide.

Conclusion

Now that you are familiar with all the details about buying, installing and taking care of your aircon system, its time you forget about the temperature and enjoy summers, the season of activity.

Play, work, party or do anything you want to in your comfort zone and leave the rest to your aircon device.

But don’t forget to call us for cleanups and other aircon servicing works. The aircon will need them to work correctly and efficiently.

1 thought on “A Complete Guide For Buying, Using And Maintaining Your Aircon System”

  1. Like!! I blog quite often and I genuinely thank you for your information. The article has truly peaked my interest.

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