The weather is getting warmer, and if you are like most Pittsburgh homeowners, you likely turn to air conditioning to help you and your family stay cool. If you have central AC you may not need to worry about window air conditioners; however, many people turn to these devices to keep the heat and humidity out of one room or their entire home. If you have ever had to install one of these cooling devices, you likely already know that it can be quite a task. We are going to review some tips for installing a window air conditioner so you can keep your home and family cool, all while protecting your safety and your windows.
Tips for Installing a Window Air Conditioner
As we mentioned, installing a window air conditioner can be a rather large task. It is not something you just want to do and hope for the best with. If not installed properly the unit could allow heat inside and raise your energy bills, fall out of the window and hurt a person and/or damage your window, and could cause other safety concerns. Let’s review some tips for installing a window air conditioner.
First, Find the Right Location: The first step to installing a window AC unit is finding a window that is suited for an air conditioner with an electrical outlet close by. Almost all such appliances are designed for a double-hung window, meaning there is a fixed upper pane and a lower pane that slides up and down. Sliding windows that move from side to side, and casement windows that tilt outwards to open, aren’t options for this type of AC unit.
Second, Measure the Window and the Unit: Make sure that the air conditioner will fit in the window, both height and width, and that the unit is the right size to accurately cool the space. Each AC unit is designed for a certain sized area. If your unit can not handle cooling the space you have it in, it can cause it not to work effectively and also burn out overtime. If the AC is too big for the area, it may cause the unit to be unable to remove the humidity as it should, as it reaches the ideal temperature quickly and stops running before it has a chance to tackle the moisture. To calculate the size you need, simply multiply the length times the width of the room or area to be cooled.
Third, Make Sure it Works: Before you go to the trouble of lifting and shifting the AC unit, plug it in and test it. This is always a must, so you don’t go through the trouble of installing an air conditioner that doesn’t work.
Fourth, Prepare the Window and Any Supplies: Before installing a window AC, open the window as far as it goes, remove the screen, and clean the windowsill, glass, and window frame. If you need extra foam, wood, or something else to fill the space, have that ready. If you need a screwdriver to tighten the unit in, make sure it is available.
Last, Place the Unit in the Window and Attach Rails and Panels: Here comes the fun part, it is now time to actually put the air conditioner in the window. Most AC units have mounting rails on the top and bottom, make sure those are inside the window. Install the side panels to they fill in the gaps between the AC and the window frame. If they don’t fill the space, use the foam or other supplies you had set aside above. Close the window with everything in place. The mounting rails will help to keep the window unit secure and in place once the window is closed.
While we have reviewed some tips for installing a window air condition, as with all appliances, each one is different, so read the owner’s manual to ensure proper installation before taking on the task.
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