Fan vs AC Costs Compared

Over 87% of U.S homes have air conditioning, which represents a meteoric rise from about 47% of US homes in 1973, according to the Department of Energy. So, it’s pretty much expected that every building or home you enter will have some form of AC. The biggest issue with AC is its high energy usage that drives up the utility bills. So, many homeowners are keen to learn more about fan vs AC cost.

AC Cost – What You Need to Know

The biggest cost associated with AC begins with its installation. Homeowners spend $3000 to $7000 on average for a new central air conditioning unit. The cost may be more or less depending on the home’s location, the complexity of the system, and the presence of existing air ducts.

If the home does not have an existing ductwork system, it may be necessary to install it for about $35 to $50 per linear foot. The national average for installing ductwork for a residential home is $2000.

What other options are available? Well, you may choose single window units or portable units with median prices ranging from $400 to $600. Wall-through air conditioners don’t necessarily need any existing ductwork with median prices ranging from $1000 to $1500. The issue is that wall-through or window units may not have the capacity to cool multiple rooms. You may need to order an AC for each room, which is very expensive in the long run.

The installation AC cost is also important to consider. HVAC technicians typically charge about $50 to $150 per hour. It may take from 1 to 5 days, depending on the amount of work required and the need for new ductwork. For more information on the average cost of an air conditioning system in Phoenix, visit this website.

Electrical Consumption Costs

Running costs are crucial to examine. The typical lifespan of an AC unit may range from 10 to 15 years. Sometimes, the unit will run for weeks or months on end. It’s estimated that the average American family parts with $2,200 annually on energy costs. Now, this is not the only issue. With the high energy consumption, about 1 .9 metric tons of Co2 are emitted.

So, how can you calculate the cost of running an AC?

You’ll just need to know its amperes rating and its BTUs, sometimes expressed as tons. For instance, 1 ton means the AC has a cooling capacity of  12,000 BTUs per hour. Most central units have ratings from 2-tons to 4 tons. A 2 ton central AC has an ampere rating of 15.

We need to multiply this number by 220V to figure out the amount of electricity consumed. So 15 amps x 220V = 3300 watts. You then divide the number by 1000 to figure out the kilowatts: 3300/1000 = 3.3 kilowatts. If you run the AC for 10 hours, it will consume = 3.3 kilowatts x 10 = 33 kilowatts.

You must then multiply the number by the cost of each kilowatt-hour. For instance, in Phoenix, residents pay about 11.96 cents per kWh. This means that it will cost = 33kWh x 11.95 cents = $3.94. If the AC runs for 10 hours each day, the monthly costs are about $118.30.

Reducing the costs

  • Turning the AC off – According to Energy Department figures, only 4 percent of households take time to turn off the central AC when no one is home, even during weekdays.
  • Reducing over-reliance – There are multiple techniques you can use to reduce your reliance on AC, including utilizing thermal drapes or window films using fans that move air, adding insulation, and living in a home that’s more energy efficient.
  • Utilize a smart thermostat – You can program it and ensure that the AC is not on when you’re not at home.
  • Switch to a more energy-efficient central AC unit
  • Replace the air filter and ensure that the air ducts are clean.

Whole House Fan Vs AC

The whole house fan can be used to substitute the air conditioner. It typically consists of a ceiling-mounted fan equipped with an attic vent that pulls air from the outside. You can get capable models for less than $700, which is a fraction of the cost of obtaining a dedicated central air conditioning unit. So, do fans cool your home? And are they more energy efficient?

Unlike an air conditioner unit, the fan does not remove heat from the air. It works through convection and evaporation. When fast-moving air blows over your skin, it hastens the rate that sweat evaporates. As the sweat evaporates, it causes your body to lose heat through convection.

Large size whole-house fans can be more efficient than small central air conditioning units. For instance, a fan that may be capable of ventilating a 1500 sq space may only have a 280 Watts motor. If it’s run for 10 hours, it would only consume 280 Watts x 10 hours = 2800 Watts or 2.8 kWh. At 11.96 cents per kWh, you would only pay $0.334.  It means you can reduce your energy costs by up to 50 to 90% even if you had two of these fans running.

Do fans have disadvantages?

Some fans may be slightly louder at full speed, which may be distracting if you desire a calmer environment. Fans don’t operate in multiple rooms, so you may need additional units. They may not provide the same level of comfort as an AC. For instance, you can’t use the thermostat to set the temperature you want. Fans don’t cool down the air but only blow it over your skin. They may not be as effective.

Fan vs AC Power Consumption – Saving Costs with Both

A better technique may entail combining the cost-savings of a fan and the effectiveness of a central AC. You may end up cutting costs for your cooling needs by a few cents every day. For this technique, you set the thermostat a few degrees higher while simultaneously running the ceiling fan. Savings of a few hundred dollars each year may add up to substantial savings over many years.

This entry was posted in Vendor News. Bookmark the permalink.
Questions - we're here to help
F&J Publications, LLC
P.O. Box 3908
Suwanee, GA 30024
P. 678.765.6550
F. 678.765.0886