When it’s cold outside, how do air conditioning units work to keep you toasty?
If you’re looking for a way to heat your home that won’t break the bank like furnaces and ducted systems, you’re not alone. How about if, rather than buying a heater, you could just turn on the air conditioner? A mini-split heat pump can reverse its polarity to accomplish this very task. Therefore, you could keep your home comfortably cool during the summertime and cozy during the colder months with the same energy-efficient appliance. (There are other varieties of heat pumps on the market if a mini-split doesn’t suit your needs.)
A typical air conditioner works by rerouting the heat generated inside a hot building to the outside, where it can be dissipated (outdoors). In the warmer months, this setup works great. In the colder months, however, a heat pump can be used to move heat from outside to inside. The air conditioning system will need to operate in reverse for this to happen.
Heat pumps are capable of functioning as heaters thanks to a tiny device called a reversing valve. Cool in the warmer months and warm during the colder months? That’s what reversible heat pumps and air conditioning units are made for.
Sometimes in the winter, people still wonder if it’s a good idea to turn on their air conditioning. When the temperature outside drops below 10 degrees Celsius, many experts in the field of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) will advise against turning on your air conditioner. Incorrect; it’s not like that at all. Though it may be cold outside, it may be beneficial to switch it on at regular intervals. There are several advantages to using your air conditioning unit on occasion even in the dead of winter.
There Are Several Reasons Why You Must Run the Air Conditioner Even if It’s Chilly Outside
Removes Dampness From Your Home
In the cold season, indoor humidity levels could rise to uncomfortable levels. You can avoid buying a humidifier and still get rid of the problem. You can get rid of the moisture in the air in your home by using the air conditioning unit.
You’ll Be Able to Spot Issues Immediately
Whenever it’s hot outside, the last thing you want to do is fuss with a damaged air conditioning unit. Many people make the mistake of not running their air conditioning unit over the winter, and then complain that it doesn’t work properly when the warm weather returns. Switching on the air conditioner even once during the colder months will reveal any issues which need fixing before the weather warms up again.
Ensuring There Is a Steady Flow of Oil
Maintaining a steady flow of oil is essential for the efficient operation of your air conditioning unit. Turning on your air conditioning system in the spring after not using it all winter may result in a disappointingly parched start. Simply switching on your air conditioning unit once or twice before it becomes excessively hot outside will avoid this from happening.
How Risky Is It to Run the Air Conditioner When It’s Cold Outside?
Indeed, cooling systems should not be used when outside temperatures are low. Condensing units found in air conditioners are not made to be used in sub-freezing temperatures. Oil specifically for lubricating the compressor is included in each unit; this oil is of high viscosity and performs best when temperatures are high. Oil thickens in colder temperatures, making it less effective at lubricating the compressor.
The opposite issue would arise if air conditioner compressors were lubricated with a lighter grade of oil, which would allow them to function in the winter. If the oil gets too hot during the warmer months, it won’t be able to adequately lubricate the compressor, putting it at risk of breaking down. The majority of individuals are reluctant to cool their homes while it’s already chilly outside, so it makes more sense for HVAC producers to use lighter oils during the warmer months. HVAC systems can be damaged by freezing condensation on the cooling coil, which is another problem with running them in cold weather.
To What Degree Can Air Conditioners Be Turned Off?
When the outside temperature is less than 10 Degrees Celsius, most HVAC manufacturers advise against using the units for a prolonged period. Wait until the temperature exceeds 15 degrees celsius for at least three days before testing your unit. This will guarantee that the oil warms up and no ice forms on the compressor.
Get in touch with HVAC providers and maintenance experts, here, if you have any doubts about the condition of your air conditioner. Do not try to use an air conditioner when the temperature outside is low. To avoid damage, most contemporary air conditioning systems include sensors to shut off when it gets too cold. In the absence of these sensors, older machines may try to run, possibly causing damage to themselves. You can avoid expensive repairs by putting off testing, maintenance, and inspection until springtime.
Do You Need to Cover Your AC?
Many property owners struggle with the question if they should cover their air conditioners during the colder months. Air conditioners designed to cope with cold and sub-zero temperatures do exist. Nevertheless, you should still protect your air conditioner from debris by covering its top.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t put anything against the perimeter of your outdoor AC unit. This ensures that your unit does not become damp from a lack of ventilation. To prevent condensation from forming within the outdoor air conditioner, it is recommended that the entire unit be covered. Rust and water damage to the interior components would result from this.
In conclusion, contemporary air conditioning units make it possible to keep the unit running throughout the winter. The clear benefit of a reversible air conditioner is that it can also be used as a heater. However, even a non-reversible air conditioning system can bring a breath of fresh air into a claustrophobic room. Keep in mind that the outdoor condenser unit can freeze if you run the air conditioning unit when the temperature drops below freezing. Now that you know what to look for and what to think about, you can confidently use your air conditioning unit throughout the colder months.