If you have suffered through hot summer days without air conditioning, consider installing a window air unit. Doing so is easier than expected, and is a cost effective way to cool specific rooms and small houses. Before you begin, gather your supplies: tape measure, air conditioner unit, and basic tools, such as screw drivers and caulk. Depending on the type of windows you have, plywood is also a possibility.
Select the right window air conditioner Begin by measuring the room where you intend to install the air conditioner. Use the measuring tape to calculate the overall square footage of the room. If the room is open to other rooms via an arch, peekaboo or other type of opening, include the square footage of the other room in your calculations as well. Next, find an online or in-store calculator where you can plug in your calculations, and learn how many BTUs to get. Once you know the power needed for a unit to cool your room, proceed to the store, and select an air conditioner that produces enough BTUs to efficiently cool your room. While shopping, consider additional features, such as energy efficiency ratings, sleep cycles and weather stripping.
Properly place the air conditioner Select which window you want to install the air conditioner in. Windows that slide up, rather than left or right, offer the easiest installation. Do not fret if your windows do not fit this description, there are other options. Next, remove the air conditioner from its packaging, and read the owner’s manual. Some models require window brackets for installation. If yours does, install the window brackets based on the instructions in the manual. If yours does not, grab a helper, and place the unit in your window. A helper is necessary because you do not want to drop your new appliance out of the window. Next, tilt the unit as specified in the manual for proper drainage.
Secure the air conditioner Slide the unit’s extension to fill the open space in the window. If your unit uses brackets, secure the unit to the brackets. If it does not, lower the window to secure the unit in place. If your windows are not the variety that slide up, cut a piece of plywood to cover the opening above the unit, and secure the plywood to the top of the air conditioner and the top of the window.
Seal the area around the air conditioner Seal the area around the air conditioner to guarantee maximum cooling efficiency. The unit probably came with weatherstripping to use around the edges of the air conditioner on the inside of the house. Install these based on the owner’s manual. Use caulk to seal around the edges on the outside of the house. If you used plywood to fill an open gap, seal around this area as well.