Double- or single-hung windows are ideal for most window air conditioners, but you can make your unit work in a sliding or casement window.
Window air conditioners (AC) can be a great option if you want a less expensive or less intrusive alternative to central air conditioning.
However, when you are shopping around, you need to ensure that your window air conditioner can actually fit in your window, whether it is a single or double-hung window, a sliding window, or a casement window.
When should you buy a window air conditioner?
Window air conditioners are considered a great option for households that do not have the budget or authority to install central air conditioning, and all of the vents and ducts that come with it in their living spaces.
Window air conditioners are also a great option for renters if your landlord will allow you to install one in your window, as you can take your air conditioning unit with you when you leave. In addition to that, these AC models tend to be relatively affordable.
What windows work for a window air conditioner?
Although it can be overwhelming to find the right air conditioner for your space, and window units can be a great, accessible option for many households, you need to make sure that you keep the size and shape of your windows in mind when you are shopping.
Window air conditioners are designed to drain and vent themselves by maintaining an outward angle to let any moisture or condensate drain by means of gravity on the outside of your room.
As a result, they are often designed to be angled when they are installed, and you may need a bracket to keep the larger outside part of your unit in the correct position over time.
For this reason, you should measure the inside of your window frame, so that you will know whether the window air conditioner will be able to fit in your window or not.
There are various kinds of windows that will work for a window air conditioner. In most cases, window air conditioners are designed to work with double or single-hung windows.
However, you can also install a window air conditioner in a sliding window or a casement window by creating a faux frame around the air conditioner model so that it can fit inside your actual frame.
Regardless of what kind of window you are choosing to install your window air conditioner in, it is important that you insulate any gaps or spaces between the unit and the window frame, with weather stripping, foam board, or foam sealant, so that the warm air and moisture that is being expelled by the window unit does not find its way back into the room.
How to install a window air conditioner in a single or double-hung window
When you are installing a window air conditioner in a single- or double-hung window, the process should be simple and easy, as most units are designed for this purpose.
In this case, the most difficult step is usually the preparation for the mounting bracket and window air conditioner to go in.
During this preparation step, you may want to have a bucket with soapy water and cleaning cloth handy so that you can wipe down the window frame and sill before you install the unit and you may also need a screwdriver to unscrew any screens or shutters that are over the window.
Then, you can follow the instructions to install the window unit as they are laid out in the owner’s manual.
How to install a window air conditioner in a sliding window
When you want to install your window air conditioner in a sliding window frame, the most important things to remember are that you want to cause as little damage to your sliding window as possible and that you want your air conditioning unit to be secure.
This is why most people build their own secondary window frame to encase the window air conditioner out of 2×2 wood, wood boards, and foam boards. This supports the window air conditioner on all of its sides to keep it securely in place.
How to install a window air conditioner in a casement window
If you want to install your window air conditioner in a casement window, you need to be prepared to remove the window panel completely.
You will still be able to use a clear acrylic sheet to cover the space above where the window air conditioner unit is installed, so that sunlight can still get in and your view is not completely obstructed, but you will not be able to open the window until you uninstall the air conditioner.