Tips for Running Air Conditioning in Winter

Air conditioning isn't just for the summer. When you install reverse cycle air conditioning (also called a heat pump), you can switch from cooling to heating in the touch of a button and enjoy comfortable temperatures 12 months a year.

If you're thinking about installing air conditioning and heating in your home or business, a reverse cycle system kills two birds with one stone. Not only will you save on purchase and installation costs compared to buying each system separately, you can also look forward to lower energy bills for the long term.

How do heat pumps work?

Reverse cycle air conditioning does just what it says – it's a cooling system that can also be run in reverse.

When you want to cool your home in the summer, warm air is passed over a refrigerant that cools it down and lowers the internal temperature of your rooms. If you want heating in the winter, the refrigerant absorbs heat from the outside (even on cold days) to warm up the air going into your rooms and raise the internal temperature.

As well as heating, these systems can also dehumidify the air and filter out contaminants to improve the air quality. As there's no flame or heated element, heat pumps avoid the safety risks of gas and electric heaters.

What are my options?

Whether you prefer a ducted or split system, both types of air conditioners are available with reverse cycle functions.

Ducted air conditioning uses a single outdoor unit to pump cool or warm air into multiple rooms through hidden vents. As you can use the same ducts all year round to provide heating and cooling, reverse cycled ducted air conditioning saves space in your walls and on your roof compared to installing a separate ducted gas heating system.

Split systems are cheaper to install, as they don't use ducts. Instead, indoor units provide heating and cooling in each room and are connected to outdoor units (or a single outdoor unit in a multi-head split system). This saves space compared to having separate cooling and heating units in each room, and some systems can be set up to provide heating and cooling in different zones at the same time.

How much do they save?

Using the same system to provide your heating and cooling makes practical and financial sense. While reverse cycle systems can cost more than standard air conditioning, you'll save money overall by not having to purchase, install and service separate systems. But the biggest savings are to your energy bills.

Modern air conditioners use inverter technology to make them as energy-efficient as possible. Reverse cycle air conditioning uses 72 percent less electricity than the portable heaters many people rely on in the winter, according to Sustainability Victoria. It's also safer and doesn't take up any extra space in your rooms.

You can save more on your heating costs and keep your rooms as comfortable as possible this winter when you:

  • Close doors and windows to prevent heat from escaping or dissipating to rooms where it's not needed.
  • Close curtains and blinds to reduce heat transfer through the windows. Denser curtain fabrics and solid blinds trap more heat.
  • Insulate your roof and walls to keep your home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.
  • Turn off the heating at night. Snuggle up in warm bedding instead.
  • Schedule regular services to keep your air conditioning operating at peak efficiency all year round.

Get your free air conditioning quote

Find out more about reverse cycle air conditioning and other heating and cooling options in Sydney's North-Western Suburbs by talking to our experts at Maxim Air.

Call us today or get in touch online.