If you’re one of the millions of Filipino home enthusiasts who feed off of home maintenance and home transformation tips, then you most likely know what Home Buddies is. To know how to fix a broken pipe, choose the best shade for your wall, or find the perfect budget appliance — this Facebook community is where you need to go.
Many Home Buddies members, although non-experts of everything home-related, regularly chime in the group’s posts and comments sections to share insights as homeowners, or aspiring ones. One such insight would be about saving energy with an inverter aircon or air conditioner, which is especially useful in a tropical country like the Philippines.
How, you might ask? Leave it on for 24 hours straight.
The idea behind the aircon saving tip
For those unfamiliar with how air conditioning works, inverter air conditioners are units designed to automatically regulate temperature to allow it to consume less energy and power, while still doing its work. It’s different and often preferred over the cheaper non-inverter aircon, which only runs in full capacity or not at all.
To make the most of an inverter aircon, you must use it uninterrupted. Meaning, the less you keep switching it on and off within a period of time, the less energy it would consume to keep adjusting its temperature. One inverter aircon owner compared it to how a singer prepares. If you’ve warmed up your vocals properly prior to singing, then the less you’ll feel the need to stop and catch your breath.
Because of the above aircon saving tip, countless Home Buddies members and non-members used their inverter aircon 24/7. Yes, literally without turning it off. For most of them, however, it turned out that the opposite happened. Instead of saving, their electricity bills went up as much as ₱1,000 to more than ₱5,000 than what they used to pay.
So, is the above aircon tipid tip a scam, after all?
How you can save with an inverter aircon
The short answer is no, at least not completely. Among those who tried maximising the efficiency of their inverter aircon in the Philippines with or without the help of the said hack did so with caution. As it should be, with most gadgets and appliances. Instead of leaving their aircon on continuously for several days, they only use it at select times of the day.
Essentially, using your aircon uninterrupted will still consume electricity. That’s how most appliances work. The longer you leave it on, naturally, the more you’ll have to pay later on. Inverter aircons are just there to make this usage more energy-efficient. Aircon technicians say that if you only use air conditioners at night, for example, then it’s okay to turn it off for a few hours.
Other ways to save energy with an inverter aircon include ensuring that its horsepower complements the space where it’s installed. The larger the room, the higher its horsepower needs to be. For the recommended temperature, experts say to keep it around 25°C. Also, seal the room properly with fillers and curtains, and regularly have the aircon cleaned by licensed personnel — about twice a month for filters, and at least once a year for the unit.
Remember, with great power (as in, owning an aircon) comes great responsibility!
Featured image credit: magraphics via Canva Pro