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Business News/ Technology / Gadgets/  Comprehensive buying guide for ACs: How to choose the right cooling companion this summer

Comprehensive buying guide for ACs: How to choose the right cooling companion this summer

Discover how to choose the perfect AC for your home with our comprehensive guide. Learn about types, capacity, energy efficiency, smart features and installation. Stay cool and comfortable all summer long

A quick guide to choose the perfect AC for your home.Premium
A quick guide to choose the perfect AC for your home.

Buying a new air conditioner (AC) for your home or workplace is no longer a mammoth task in the present-day due to easy availability of products on e-commerce websites. You can check the basic specifications like the AC type, brand, tonnage, and features to get the best option. However, since technology is advancing at such a fast pace, it is not easy to keep up with all the new features coming out. Modern ACs are Wi-Fi enabled to control them with your smartphone or simply your voice. We're here to add to that convenience by helping you understand everything about ACs before making a purchase.

What type of AC should you pick?

There are two types of ACs to choose from; split and window, both of which are quite different from each other. Even then, there are some advantages and disadvantages associated with each type of AC. If you are clear about your requirements, it will be pretty easy to choose one of the two types. Let’s dive deeper into both types of ACs so it would your choice even easier.

Window AC

Window ACs are compact air conditioners that are more often used for single rooms and come with basic features. Here, all the cooling components are provided in a single compact unit making it easier to install and these ACs are also comparatively cheaper. Windows ACs are mostly installed on a window sill or an opening in the wall. The maintenance is also easier and quicker because of how easy it is to remove and install it back in its place. One of the biggest disadvantages of a Window AC is that the noise is comparatively higher. Window ACs are a lot more affordable than split ones - a great advantage to have.

Split AC

Split ACs, as the name suggests, are split into two separate components. The indoor unit includes all the basic components while the exterior unit includes the compressor. This makes the home look aesthetically pleasing and you can easily place your compressor unit in a balcony to maintain the home's decor consistency. It can be installed in any room of your house whether it has a window or not and the operation is quiet too. Two of the biggest disadvantages include the installation and the price. The installation is a bit more complicated than window ACs and split ACs are comparatively expensive.

Also read: Best split ACs: 10 perfect picks of April 2024 to keep your home cool during peak summer months

How to select the right capacity for your home

Once you are done selecting the air conditioner type, it is time to pick the capacity. ACs come in different sizes according to the cooling capacity. You must have heard about “ton" when looking for an AC. To make it simpler, this number tells you how powerful the AC is. There are three options to choose from; 1 Ton, 1.5 Ton and 2 Ton. This also tells you how big of an area the AC can cool down. The table below will make it easier to understand and choose the best option for your space.

CapacityRoom size
1 Ton100 to 125 sq. ft.
1.5 Ton150 to 200 sq. ft.
2 TonAbove 200 sq. ft.

The price of the AC also increases quickly when moving to an AC with high tonnage. Now, once you are familiar with the capacity and how to choose the right one, let's try to break down energy ratings.

Also read: Best 1.5 ton split AC to chill like a pro: Top 10 energy-efficient models with powerful cooling

Difference between inverter and non-inverter AC

Inverter ACs cool down a large room faster than ACs with fixed speed. This inverter technology is mostly associated with split ACs but the latest window ACs also come with this technology. Inverter ACs are more efficient than the non-inverter ones because they use the Variable Frequency Drive technology to control the compressor's speed. This simply means that a 2-ton inverter AC automatically dials down the speed of the compressor to 1 ton or 1.5 ton when needed. This directly affects the total power consumption of the AC and saves you money on electricity bills. And since we are talking about saving energy and cutting down electricity bills, an Energy Star rating is another thing to look for when choosing an AC.

Also read: Everyday cooling is a breeze with our picks of the best 1.5 ton Carrier air conditioners

What is the Energy Star rating?

Just like most home appliances today, ACs also come with a star rating which is the ratio of the cooling capacity of the AC to the energy consumed. In India, BEE provides and regulates the star ratings for all appliances. It ranges from one to five, one being the least energy efficient while 5 is the most energy efficient. The ACs with higher stars are comparatively expensive but use less energy, making them a cheaper option in the long run. In a few words, you should go for an AC with a high star rating.

Smart Features and AI in ACs

Modern ACs come with smart connectivity and artificial intelligence (AI) features to make your life easier and more comfortable. Smart features and AI are two different things. Smart features give you quick control over the AC without using the remote while AI automatically adjusts the cooling and humidity levels to your comfort. Smart features also include a smartphone app that lets you control the temperature and more features of the AC. You can also control the functioning using voice commands via Alexa or Google Home. Most of these features make the AC more expensive but if you think these features are worth your money then you should go for it.

Also read: Best 1 ton split AC for your home: Top 10 options for cooler summers and lower electricity bills

Installation and warranty

Installation and warranty coverage should also be taken into consideration when looking for an AC for your space. As previously mentioned, window ACs are much easier to install than split ACs, hence the installation price is also lower for window ACs compared to split ones. As for the warranty, you get at least 1-year warranty on the unit and 5 years of warranty on the compressor. Also, ensure that your city has a service centre for the brand of your choice so you get quick service.


Selecting the best air conditioner (AC) for your home involves considering factors such as type, capacity, energy efficiency, special features, and installation requirements. By carefully evaluating these factors and understanding your specific cooling needs, you can make an informed decision that will keep your home cool and comfortable for years to come. Additionally, make sure to consult online reviews of the specific model that you are going to buy to get all the information about it.

Disclaimer: At Livemint, we help you stay up-to-date with the latest trends and products. Mint has an affiliate partnership, so we may get a part of the revenue when you make a purchase. We shall not be liable for any claim under applicable laws, including but not limited to the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, with respect to the products. The products listed in this article are in no particular order of priority.

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Amit Rahi
I've been working in the tech world for more than five years, writing lots of in-depth reviews about gadgets. Exploring the ins and outs of the latest tech has been quite a journey for me. As a content writer, my goal is to make tech understandable and exciting for people like me who love gadgets.
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Published: 18 Apr 2024, 05:38 PM IST
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