UncategorizedSeptember 17, 2022by Alex

Running an air conditioner in winter: What’s important to know

Modern air conditioners work not only for cooling but also for heating. Such a device can be used effectively all year round, creating a comfortable microclimate in the house in any season of the year.


Heating with air conditioner in winter: pros and cons


The air conditioner is a special household appliance designed for cooling the air. Manufacturers of climatic equipment equip modern split-systems with heating functions, and this allows the owner to use conditioners not only in summer but also in the cold season, creating a warm comfortable atmosphere indoors. Thanks to the built-in system of adjustments the user can set the necessary temperature of the air in a premise.


The heating option is an undeniable plus of climate systems. But there are also disadvantages.


Features and disadvantages of heating with an air conditioner:


An air conditioner is not a complete heating appliance, so many manufacturers recommend using them as an additional heat source or to heat rooms in the off-season when the central heating system is not yet running. But if one selects a conditioner with appropriate capacity, taking into consideration the heatable area of the premise, such a device is quite capable to substitute ordinary radiators.


Split systems must not be operated in heating mode if the temperature outside is lower than the critical temperature specified in the instruction.


The air conditioner is powered by electricity and its operation consumes a certain amount of energy. During the winter season, the unit operates at a higher capacity and consumes more energy. The owner is advised to calculate in advance whether it is profitable to use an air conditioner for heating or it is cheaper to heat with convectors or other kinds of heaters.


Peculiarities of operation of a conditioner in wintertime

It is necessary to exploit conditioners for heating in the winter season, keeping to some rules.


Instructions and peculiarities of split-systems exploitation in winter:


It is forbidden to switch on the unit if the temperature outside is below the critical value specified in the product certificate.

If the radiator freezes in sub-zero temperatures for a prolonged period of time, this will reduce the efficiency of the appliance. At certain intervals (every 40-60 minutes), the appliance goes into defrost mode, during which hot freon from the indoor unit is transferred to the outdoor unit. The frequency and duration of this cycle depend on the degree of frostbite.

During the heating operation, water drains from the radiator grilles into the drip tray. At sub-zero temperatures it turns into ice, which must be removed or the heat exchanger tubes could be severely deformed. The ice must not be broken off by hand, but the frozen areas must be poured over with water from a hot kettle. In order to avoid such consequences and troubles in the de-icing fight, it is possible to purchase an air conditioner with a built-in tray heating cable.

You should not set the temperature too high for heating the air in the room, as this will force the unit to work at a high capacity, which will lead to rapid wear and tear.

The air conditioner also requires periodic maintenance during the winter period. It is necessary to clean filters and flush impeller, where undesirable bacteria often accumulate, at least once in two weeks. It is also necessary to have the freon top-up and preventive checking of serviceability of important mechanisms of the system performed by experienced specialists from the service center.


During winter operation, air conditioners should be operated according to the manufacturer’s recommendations and the outdoor temperature should be checked before switching on the air conditioner for heating. This will allow you to operate your air-conditioning equipment efficiently during the winter season, without the risk of its quick breakdown.

If you notice any malfunction or need preventive maintenance, you can always contact SDAC Heating & Air Conditioning. Our technicians will gladly help you.


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