Air Conditioning is a necessary piece of kit for your home or business to keep temperatures down in warmer climates.
This essential cooling aid was invented back in 1906 by a New York-based inventor called Willis Carrier. He called it an ‘apparatus for treating air’ and its sole purpose was to quicken drying in a steamy Brooklyn printing press.
Technology has continued to innovate throughout the last century, although the standard design for Air Conditioning hasn’t altered significantly since the 1950s. In a world where technology evolves at a staggering pace, it shows that the overall design is very much still fit for purpose.
However, we understand that all this lovely cool air comes at a price, and with over 10% of the World’s energy costs deriving from Air Conditioning, it’s not surprising that most see it as a necessary cost.
Globally, there are approximately 1.9 billion air conditioning units, and this is expected to rise to 5 billion by 2050. AC is said to be the biggest factor in growing electricity demand worldwide, with Saudi Arabia’s energy expenditure on air conditioning sitting at almost 70% of their overall spending as a nation. You can only imagine what their energy bills look like!
For most of the world, lower air conditioning costs would be very welcome. This is where solar-powered air conditioners come into play! In this article, we will explore solar air conditioning, and discuss all you need to know about this cost-effective solution to domestic and commercial air cooling.
WHAT IS SOLAR AIR CONDITIONING?
Solar air conditioning refers to air cooling and heating systems which utilise solar energy to power units, rather than just power from the main grid. By using energy from the sun, solar air conditioning systems are a sustainable alternative to conventional air conditioners, which draw power from non-environmentally friendly sources.
The demand for air conditioning is steadily increasing, driven by numerous factors including rising global temperatures, urbanisation, technological advancements and more. Solar air conditioning is an advancement that ensures we are acting responsibly as a population by protecting the environment.
BENEFITS OF SOLAR AC
There are a number of benefits to installing solar air conditioning systems over traditional units. Let’s take a look at some of the main advantages of investing in solar-powered air conditioning:
REDUCED ENERGY BILLS
Whilst the initial outlay to install solar air conditioning systems might be more than traditional alternatives, over time solar-powered systems will save you more money on your energy bills. With most systems, you will see a drop in energy consumption of around 50%. When the sun is shining, you will be much less dependent on the grid.
If you have a solar battery storage system, you might find that you can run your solar air conditioning system without having to buy any energy from the grid, effectively meaning your running costs are zero. Solar air conditioning units are built to last and don’t require much maintenance, meaning you can enjoy years of cool air at a huge discount, with low additional costs!
LOWER CARBON FOOTPRINT
Power collected and stored in solar energy systems is entirely green, meaning that the electricity used to power solar air conditioning units was produced with no harm to the environment whatsoever. Solar air conditioning is a great way for businesses to show their dedication to sustainability, as well as for homeowners to do their bit for the environment.
INCREASED PROPERTY VALUE
Whilst the idea is starting to grow in popularity, solar air conditioning systems are still fairly underused throughout the world. Given the growing demand for air conditioning, these sustainable solar-powered systems will soon be very desirable among property owners and investors. By installing solar air conditioning in your home, office, commercial property, etc., you will increase the value of your space by quite a significant amount.
INDEPENDENCE FROM THE GRID
With a solar energy storage solution, you can save any excess solar power you generate using a battery. You can then use this energy to power your air conditioning, as well as the rest of your property, at any time. You can remain powered through blackouts, power outages, and more, all completely independent of the main grid. Never be caught without air conditioning again!
Grid independence also gives you the option to switch where your power comes from at different times of the day, depending on the demand and electricity costs.
HOW DOES SOLAR AC WORK?
There are a few ways you can achieve solar-powered air conditioning. There are all-in-one photovoltaic air conditioning systems, as well as standard air conditioning systems that can be connected with separate solar energy systems. Let’s take a look at how they work:
SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC AC SYSTEMS
The solar panels fitted to these AC systems absorb sunlight. This energy causes electrons within the material of solar cells to vibrate and move, which generates DC electricity.
DC electricity is not commonly used in domestic or commercial properties. Because of this, DC electricity is converted into AC electricity using inverters. This means that the electricity generated by the solar panels is now compatible with electrical appliances and can be used to power properties, including air conditioning systems.
CONNECTING TO A SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEM
To connect standard air conditioning units to a solar energy system, you first need to assess whether your solar panels generate enough energy to power your units. Depending on your setup, you may need a new inverter that is capable of handling the increased output. The system then just needs to be wired up by a professional, in compliance with regulatory requirements.
HOW MUCH CAN YOU SAVE WITH SOLAR AC?
The amount of money you can save in the long run by investing in solar AC depends on a long list of factors, including:
Location. Where your property is located will affect the amount of money you will save with a solar AC system. Areas with more sunlight will generate more power for you to utilise, meaning more savings can be made. Energy prices also differ based on location, meaning your savings might be more or less than others depending on where you live.
Energy consumption. The amount of money saved will depend on how much energy the user’s air conditioning system consumes. The more energy-efficient the system, the greater the potential savings.
Solar energy system. Your solar energy storage system and its size will determine how much electricity it can generate. A bigger system will result in more significant energy savings.
Incentives. Some regions offer incentives, tax credits, and/or rebates for installing solar panels and using sustainable energy. This can reduce upfront costs, as well as increase future savings.
Net metering. Many areas have net metering policies that allow homeowners to sell excess solar power back to the grid. This means you can even use your solar energy system to generate an income!
SOLAR-POWERED AIR CONDITIONING FROM SOLTARO
At Soltaro, we are the experts when it comes to all things solar. Don’t underestimate the savings that are to be made when you invest in air conditioning systems from us, you’ll have the peace of mind that you’re investing in a long-lasting, ‘Australian’ designed system that was built to deal with harsh climates. You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. Do you want to find out what Soltaro can do for your home or business? Get in touch with us today, we’re always available to answer your questions. With retailers all over the world, we are best placed to advise what the best solution for your property is without breaking the bank.