AC Energy Consumption

Increasingly residential house hold consume 40 to 60 % of power in air-conditioning. With increasing power rates, increasing diesel rates, larger home sizes and life style changes, this ratio is going to go up only.


Unfortunately India has not really adopted the concepts of centralized cooling and district cooling in the residential setup. They may provide better energy usage for energy conditioning. Nevertheless, there are  some tips and considerations for each family in trying to reduce the AC energy consumption.

Let us first consider the head sources for a room or home which impact the Ac load. The factors are the following:

  1. air temperature in the room,
  2. solar heat transmission through the walls,
  3. atmospheric heat transmission by the walls,  
  4. solar heat transmission through the glass / windows
  5. Air infiltration (Cold air going out and hot air coming in) via the doors, windows, air leakages
  6. Heat released by the people (more the people, more the heat release)
  7. Energy consumption by lights, fans, TV or other appliances (almost all the energy would result in heat gain)
  8. Energy Consumed by Air conditioner

Let us see what are the factors in your control:

  1. Choice of energy efficient AC (select more efficient and right size AC)
  2. Heat Transmission through glass (Keep curtains)
  3. Lighting power and other appliances (is it required to keep the lights on?)
  4. Ensuring no air leakages / keep doors air tight close
  5. Use doors less frequently
  6. Keeping AC temperature setting high

The last one is probably the most important factor in your control, please do not reduce the AC temperature setting below 250 C. If the temperature setting is kept low, the room does not cool faster. 250 C temperature is good enough for your body.

If you keep the setting lower than 250 C and the temperature actually gets lower than 250 C (if it cannot, what is the use of keeping temp lower!), the energy consumption increases disproportionately. Almost all the heat gain factors such as air ingress, heat transmission through the wall etc. increase with lower temperature.

Please be smart in using air-conditioning.

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