Are you interested to know more about solar-powered air conditioners? Solar air conditioning is an excellent solution to lower the electricity bills and to have air conditioning available even when you are not connected to the grid.
Among the best solar-powered AC systems is Hybrid Acdc Solar Air Conditioner, DELLA 18,000 BTU Ductless Inverter System, Cooper & Hunter 36,000 BTU Mini-Split, Senville AURA Series Mini-Split, Klimaire Ductless Mini-Split Inverter Heat Pump System, and DAIKIN 18,000 BTU Mini-Split Heat Pump System.
In addition, it is an excellent way to reduce the carbon footprint and safeguard the environment. This article goes over all there is to know about air conditioning, including good points and negative aspects.
Can You Run Air Conditioning On Solar Power?
It is possible to run an air conditioner with solar power. You can set up an air conditioner to get power from the grid, directly from solar panels, or a battery charged by solar panels. However, it can be a considerable investment at the beginning.
But, it would be best if you considered the long-term benefits of having such a system in place for independence and money saved on the electric bill. If you already have an air conditioning system, you can switch it to solar by adding a converter and battery unit. (sources)
How Does Solar-Powered Air Conditioning Work?
Solar-powered air conditioning works the same way as a typical air conditioning system. The only difference is in the source of energy. Instead of getting the power from the grid, it gets it from the solar panels.
There are different types of solar air conditioners to choose from:
- Solar photovoltaic air conditioners
- Solar thermal systems
- Absorption chillers
Solar Photovoltaic Air Conditioners
The most common is the solar photovoltaic air conditioner. It works with solar panels responsible for absorbing energy from sunlight. The panels are usually situated on the house roof and can power an air conditioner directly or through a solar battery.
The solar panels could be only part of your air conditioning system or provide energy for the entire house, including the air conditioner.
Suppose you have a solar system with batteries. It is possible to store the additional electricity produced and use it during the night or when the weather doesn’t allow the solar panels to produce electricity. (source)
Solar Thermal Systems
A solar thermal system can also power air conditioners. It is a way of producing electricity through a plate that can harvest solar energy. The collected energy can activate the compressor responsible for cooling the air.
Absorption chillers are another cooling system that uses solar panels to make the fan and the compressor work.
What Are The Options Available?
There are several options for powering a solar air conditioner system. They can get power in the following mode:
- Hybrid system
DC-Powered Air Conditioners
DC-powered air conditioner systems run on a direct current, which means the air conditioner gets electricity directly from the source (the solar panels). However, the source can be batteries (also charged with solar energy), and therefore it is a type of system that can be run off the grid entirely.
It is a simple system since the solar panels produce direct current (DC) and can power the air conditioner directly. It is a perfect system to live off the grid with the minimal equipment required, and it is a relatively easy system to install.
AC-Powered Air Conditioners
AC (alternative current) powered air conditioner systems require an inverter to convert electricity from DC (direct current) to alternating current from the solar panels.
Therefore, one of the most significant advantages of choosing an air conditioner system that runs on AC is that you can also connect it to the grid.
So in case there is no sun, and solar energy is not available, you can always keep the air conditioner working through the standard electric current.
In addition, if you have the solar panels connected with the grid, too, the excess electricity can go back to the grid in exchange for credits.
Hybrid Air Conditioners
Hybrid-powered solar air conditioners can run in DC and AC modes. They could also be connected to the grid and the solar panels (or batteries charged by the solar panels) simultaneously.
One could switch between one system or the other depending on what type of electricity is available. For instance, at night, one could use the electricity from the grid when the sun is not out.
Can I Save From Using A Solar-Powered Air Conditioner?
The main advantage of a solar-powered air conditioner is that it can economize significantly on the energy bill. According to estimations, it is possible to save up to 40% on electricity using solar energy to power air conditioners.
Indeed, the original investment to set up a solar-powered air conditioner system is pretty high. However, it is possible to get back the initial investment and way more by lowering the monthly electric bills.
An air conditioner should last between 15 to 20 years, and solar panels can last for 25 years. So a homeowner could already get back the original investment in the first few years of operation.
The number of panels and the efficiency of the components of the system determines how much you can save.
System Components Include
- Solar panels
- Converters (when applicable)
The more efficient the batteries and the panels, the more energy you can save.
What Are The Real Benefits Of Solar-Powered Air Conditioners?
Besides the upfront costs and the unpredictable weather, there are many advantages to a solar-powered air conditioning system, which are:
- Long term saving costs
- Ability to be independent of the grid
- Easy maintenance
- Better for the environment
Traditional air conditioners produce a lot of CO2, while solar energy is clean and renewable. Once the panels are mounted, they require minimal maintenance and cleaning. Even in the case of snow, you can let it melt, and it falls off pretty quickly.
In addition, solar air conditioning is durable. Once you set it up, it will last for decades.
Best Solar Powered Air Conditioners
With enough solar panels, a suitable inverter, and a proper battery system, you can run a good air conditioner on solar energy. If you want to run an off-grid air conditioning system, you have to consider the following things:
- You have to generate enough power
- You have to work out how many solar panels do you need
- Select a proper battery system
- Select a proper inverter
- Select the right AC system
An air conditioning system consumes quite some energy, and you have to calculate precisely how much and estimate the number of panels you need to run the system. For example, if your air conditioner requires 1.2 KW and is on for the entire day, the system requires almost 29 KW per 24 hours. With this in mind, you can estimate what solar panels you need and how many.
Selecting The Battery
The next thing to figure out is the battery bank you need which has to be large enough to store enough energy to run the system in case necessary.
It would be best to have enough solar panels to charge your batteries and run the air conditioner without problems. In addition, an inverter is necessary to run an off-grid solar-powered AC system.
The inverter should have a good efficiency so that you will not lose too much electricity on the way.
Finally, you have to choose the right system between the many already available.
Some Of The Best Systems To Choose From
This air conditioner system is hybrid, which allows you to save energy during the day since you can run it on solar energy entirely, but it can also run off power from the grid. It can run on DC mode or AC mode.
You can connect the system to a 380v/10A solar power on direct current (DC). When there is no sunshine, this system can run off the average electricity from the grid during the night.
It is a ductless system that can provide cooling and heat up to 650 square feet. It has a complete installation kit, and it has innovative technology.
It has intelligent sensors that detect the room temperature and automatically adjust airflow and temperature.
It is perfect for temperature control and energy savings. The system works quietly for maximum comfort. There are other smart settings too, such as:
- Auto defrost
- Self Diagnosis
- Sleep mode
- Eco energy and saving mode
- Multiple fans
It is a ductless mini-split air conditioner system with a heat pump included. The system consists of a complete installation kit with an insulated copper line set, wires, drainage extension, and other accessories.
It comes with a seven-year warranty to provide the buyers with the peace of mind. Moreover, it is possible to operate it through wifi and be compatible with smart devices.
This system uses smart technology and works with Alexa. You can control the system through your voice from anywhere in the house or through a downloadable app. It is a very efficient system, but it also has an attractive design to look good in the home.
It comes with a ten-year warranty, one of the most extended coverage periods compared with other systems. It includes the following:
- Indoor air handled
- Outdoor condenser
- Installation kit
This air conditioner includes an indoor and outdoor unit, an installation kit with accessories, wires, wall mounting, and the remote control. The system is quiet, and it is possible to control it from an app.
It has exciting features such as auto-restart, sleeps more, and many other options. In addition, it comes with five years warranty.
This air conditioner has one of the most extended manufacturer’s warranties. You have a 12-year warranty which includes free technical support in case of any problem. There are top features available, such as:
- Self-diagnostic system with digital display
- Titanium photovoltaic air purifier filters
- Dry functions
It covers up to 1000 square feet, and it includes an outdoor unit, remote control, an indoor unit, and a wall-mounted bracket.
Pros And Cons Of Solar Air Conditioners Systems
Using solar energy to power air conditioning and the rest of the appliances has several advantages and disadvantages.
The most apparent benefit is the lower energy costs on the positive side. The sun is always there, and it is an excellent idea to set up a system to harvest sunlight. (source)
In some cases using solar energy is the only solution for those living far away from the grid, and the only option is either solar energy or a portable generator.
Solar energy is durable and requires minimal maintenance. In addition, the warranties can last for a long time if you choose a good provider for the solar system and the AC system. Unfortunately, there are also negative points about solar energy, such as the dependency on the weather and the fact that you can’t use it at night (although you could remedy the situation with a battery system).
You could also live in a state that is not friendly toward solar energy, and it could be too expensive to have a solar system since there is no facilitation from the state or government.
Other Essential Factors To Consider
While it is easy to be an enthusiast in getting a solar system to power your air conditioning system because of the many advantages, you should consider other factors carefully.
Here are some essential points to consider:
The Size Of The House
If you have a large house, it is necessary to have a powerful air conditioning system with a big capacity. In that case, you are looking at the necessity of getting more solar panels installed, resulting in a higher initial expense to get the system working.
The climate can impact the number of solar panels you need and thus the initial costs. If you live in an area with a lot of sunlight, it is possible to get away with a lower number of panels since the solar energy collected will be much higher.
Depending on the energy consumption, you need to consider how many batteries you might need for your system. It is good to have batteries to run the system at night. But also because in the case of clouds, you have a backup.
It is better to have a battery capacity that can last for a few days in emergencies or unpredictable events. It becomes essential if you also run other appliances on solar energy and if you are disconnected from the grid.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I Install The Solar Air Conditioner Myself, Or Should I Get A Professional To Do It?
It is better to have a professional install your solar-powered air conditioner. Isis because many parts and wires have to be connected, including going on the roof and connecting electrical components.
It can be dangerous, and it is easy to make a mistake. A professional knows what to do and can maintain a safe operation. A professional can advise on what is best for your system, how to make it more efficient, and many other things.
Some manufacturers might not activate your warranty if professionals do not install the system.
What Are The Costs Of A Solar-Powered Air Conditioner?
The costs depend on how complex the solar system is, your needs, and how powerful the air conditioner depends on the size of the house. Such a system can cost anything between $1500 and $ 13000. Fortunately, it is possible to get tax credits up to 26%, making a solar system more affordable.
What Is A Solar-Powered Air Conditioner?
A solar-powered air conditioner is a system that runs an air conditioner on energy gotten from solar power. It is a standard air conditioner that operates on electricity provided by solar panels or batteries charged with solar energy.
It is always possible to run electrical devices and appliances on solar energy with the proper equipment. It is achievable if the wiring is correct and all the components needed to transform DC into AC are there (a converter, but other wires and connections might be required).