Summer Time! Inverter or Non-Inverter Air Conditioner? 2

Its been some time since we posted a discussion on our blog. We have received numerous mails from our readers as they are in a dilemma regarding purchase of an Air Conditioner – weather to go for a regular AC or an inverter AC and what are the benefits of each technology. We are no experts in this field so would also like to mention right at the beginning that this article may be based on personal experiences and totally a wrong interpretation, but we would definitely like an open discussion on this issue so all members could post in their experiences. Today with limited power supply and people wishing to help their bit by saving energy have caught the fancy of consumer electronic manufacturers. With newer marketing of consumer electronics focused on Power Saving and even government launching an energy saving specification, more and more people are aware of power savings and how it can help conserve energy. BEE (Bureau of Energy Efficiency – http://beeindia.in) issues various labels based on the power efficiency of a product. For Air Conditioners only non-inverter ones have this label as there is no fixed standard still for inverter ACs, but usually inverter ACs have close to 5 Star or more rating. From 1st January, 2014, these are the specifications for Air Conditioner

Jan – 2014 to December 2015
Star Minimum Maximum
1 2.7 2.89
2 2.9 3.09
3 3.1 3.29
4 3.3 3.49
5 3.5

The Minimum and Maximum figures are referred to as COP (Co-efficient of Performance – amount of cooling provided to total energy consumed). If the figure is quite high then they are mentioning the EER(Energy Efficiency Ratio). In that case you will need to divide the figure you get in EER by 3.413. For exact calculation do refer to this on the internet – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_conditioner. Ok so final question would be: After all this discussion which AC should you chose and whether it would be inverter or non-inverter. This really depends on the average time you need to use the air conditioner. Say a regular split AC cost can vary from say around INR25000 – INR 60000 based on its star ratings. So if your usage is limited then it will not make any difference as you would never recover the additional investment, but say if you use for say 24 hours a day and most part of the year, then you could have substantial savings and easily recover your investments. Lets take a simple example. Company A sells their 2 Star Split AC for 25000. That might consume say around 1700 watts per hour. Now they have a 5 Star AC which is available for say 35000-40000 and that consumes say 1500 watts per hour. So by investing another 10000-15000  you save around 15% power. Now if you purchase an inverter AC the cost might be around 45000-60000. That might consume say 1000-1400 watts per hour (depending on the settings) because inverter power consumption varies. So you can save around 10% to 40% compared to a regular 5 Star AC based on the settings. But you need to invest the extra 5000-15000 in the AC. So if you use your 1.5 T AC for say 4 hours a day and we assume that the AC is ON for 70% of the time in case of non inverter. While in case of inverter it will not start / stop but will run throughout at a specific settings without shutting off the inverter. the calculation can come to

Hours Per Day Regular 2 Star Regular 5 Star Inverter AC Full Settings Inverter AC Low Settings
4 4760 4200 4400 3200
8 9520 8400 8000 6400
12 14280 12600 11000 9600

*above figures are watts per hour so total units consumed would be divided by 1000.

Hence, between a Regular 5 Star and an Inverter at Full settings we hardly see any difference in power consumption. Why is that? Because for inverter we assume for 1st hour it runs at full load and from next hour at around low settings load. If anyone is expert in the field of Electricity / Power Consumption or if companies selling such models are interested in throwing some light, kindly post your comments below and we would be more than happy to correct our views. As of now we find that inverter helps only if you are running your AC for longer hours and for more days a year. Any thoughts? Comments welcome…

2 thoughts on “Summer Time! Inverter or Non-Inverter Air Conditioner?

  1. Reply Jaagare Apr 23,2014 1:30 am

    @VoltasAW – Voltas AC – ENERGY SAVING CALCULATOR – will take you to the Voltas AC Site.

  2. Reply Jaagare May 9,2014 3:27 am

    Another link for Calculating AC Requirements / Power Savings : SaveEnergy.co.in

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