How many hours should an AC run per day?

Running your air conditioning unit for up to 24 hours, how an AC unit achieves this, and the disadvantages of running an air conditioner for too long.

With hot summer days seeming to drag on for too long, an air conditioner in your home is a necessity. You might be wondering, with hotter days feeling longer and more unbearable, how long can your air conditioner be left to run for? Moreover, for how long can you enjoy it in a day? You will be happy to know that an air conditioner can be run for long hours in a day, but there are some disadvantages to this.

How long can an air conditioner run for, and how does this happen?

An air conditioner can run for up to 24 full hours, which is a full day. This will not lead to any harm to your air conditioner, as it is designed to maintain cooling all day long. Running an air conditioning unit all day will not lead to your unit getting damaged from 24-hour usage, and it can even be run for longer than that if kept on.

So, how is an air conditioner able to run for long periods of time? Determining this relies on the functioning of the compressor. When an air conditioner is operating, it is the compressor component of the unit that is actually doing the job. Therefore, determining how long an air conditioner runs in a day is reliant in how long the compressor is running in the day. However, having your air conditioner run for 24 full hours does not always mean that it will be running for the entire time. Some air conditioning units have a feature that switches the compressor on an on-and-off cycle, after reaching the preferred temperature.

Cooling is only achieved when the compressor is set to be running. When the compressor is on, it can use up to 90 to 95 percent of the unit’s power. However, should the capacity of your unit be perfect to that required by the size of your room, then during modest summers, the compressor can run for 70 to 80 percent of the time. This means that this would be for 16 to 19 hours in a day. When summer days are extremely hot, a compressor can run for 90 to 100 percent of the time in the day.

What are some of the factors that will boost the running time of the compressor?

There are some factors that will increase the running time of an air conditioners compressor for longer usage. Of these factors, an undersized air conditioner is one. By undersized, this means that the cooling capacity of the unit is less than what is required for the room or space you are looking to cool.

When an air conditioner is undersized, this will allow for the compressor to run the whole time without the possibility of it switching off at any point, but it will struggle to reach the preferred temperature. Very hot outdoor temperatures can also contribute to the increased running time of a compressor. This will typically be during the hottest temperatures, which will lead to a higher load and demand on the air conditioner to run and reach the desired cooling. In this case, the compressor will run constantly and reach the preferred temperature. When the thermostat of the unit is set low, the unit will run for an extended time to reach the set temperature.

What are the disadvantages of running an AC for 24 hours?

It is common knowledge that air conditioners consume electricity. Running one for long periods will certainly increase power consumption and increase your electricity bill. Running your unit for long periods, like 24 hours, will lead to the unit deteriorating faster because of the prolonged hours of usage, as with any electronic device.

Since devices and appliances have a certain lifespan, overusing them will mean that they are working more, which will decrease the lifespan of the appliance. Some of the units’ components will also deteriorate much faster. Longer hours of operation will mean that your unit may need more regular service and maintenance. As the unit will be running for long periods of time, there will be a more rapid build-up of dust and salt in the air conditioning unit’s interior and exterior.

This means that more services will be needed to ensure this is kept under wraps. The unit’s air filters might also need more regular changing, adding to costs of maintenance.

Running an air conditioner for as long as 24 hours comes with its pros and cons, which are to be considered when running your unit.

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