How Long Can a Window AC Run Continuously?

Window air conditioners are the most basic AC unit that you can find in most households nowadays. They are single units, and their spare parts and components are included inside their packaging box. Typically, this kind of AC is installed in a window and then plugged into an electric outlet. 

While Window AC can run all day continuously, it is not recommended. Keeping your Window AC running for 12 hours a day is much safer. If left running 24/7, it will burn more electricity and reduce its lifespan due to wear and tear.

However, compared to other air conditioners like central air conditioners, Window ACs are much cheaper. Therefore, they are becoming popular since Window AC is one of the most cost-effective ways to cool the house. Along with that, they are much easier to install. 

How do Window AC Units Work?

The girl regulates the temperature of a small room air conditioner

Indeed, we may find our homes uncomfortable during the blazing summer season. Summer months bring intense heat that can make us feel uneasy. So, when this time comes, you want to do something about it. You want to make yourself feel cool and refreshing. But definitely, you cannot go to the beach and swim. 

So, to solve the problem, you will use none other than air conditioners. Nowadays, you will most likely see air conditioners installed on a window. But then you might be wondering what they are. Plus, how do these AC units work? 

Window ACs work through two cycles. The first is the room cycle which explains how Window ACs will cool your room. The second is the hot air cycle which describes how Window ACs will cool. 

The Room Cycle

By turning on the Window ACs thermostat, it will start to detect if there is an increase in the temperature. As the temperature hikes up, it will then trigger two things. The blower will sip all the warm and humid air inside the room. The AC will then absorb this heat.

After this, the compressor will be automatically tapped and cause the cool refrigerant to pass through the cooling coil, which has a much lower temperature than the room air. Because of this, the cooling coil can extract all the warm heat in the room.

When the filtered room temperature goes down, the air will drop and lose humidity. However, if the air continues to fall, the absorbed air will become fresher and chiller and return to the room at a higher speed. 

The Hot Air Cycle 

The hot air cycle utilizes the air outside to cool down the condenser. As you can relate, you will find that the back of a window AC is always hot.

This blazing heat is because the fan pulls in and absorbs all the hot air. This hot air will go through the condensing coil. In addition, the refrigerant inside the condensing loop is even hotter. Overall, there is an accumulation of heat. 

The refrigerant should be cooled down first for the hot atmospheric air that has been absorbed to be cooled. Then, the refrigerant will pass through the expansion valve, which will drop its temperature and pressure.

Later, the air will evolve into a liquid form at a cooler temperature, making the condenser coil. Then, the cycle continues. 

Can You Leave Your Window AC Unit on All Day?

Open panel adjustment of a small room air conditioner

No doubt, the summer seasons can make you feel cramped and uncomfortable. The climate outside is too hot, and you feel like the electric fan is not doing its thing. Then, you might ask if it is okay to leave your Window AC running throughout the day? After all, you cannot endure the scorching heat anymore. 

Experts say that it is safe to leave Window ACs on all day. This is because manufacturers designed them to operate under a lot of usages.

However, while it is safe and understandable to keep Windows AC functioning throughout the day, it is not recommended. While they are not often visible, there are harmful impacts that people overlook all the time. 

If you’re concerned if you can leave your Window AC running all day, the answer is a big no. This definitive guide lists why you should not let your Windows AC on continuously. Here’s the truth why. 

Running Window ACs Continuously Will Damage the Environment. 

It is no lie that Window ACs are harmful to the environment in the long run, containing hydrofluorocarbons or HFCS. These HFCs are greenhouse gases that Windows AC used to cool down outside atmospheric air before redirecting it back inside the room. But these greenhouse gases are one of the most significant causes of global warming. 

If this goes on for a long time, running Window ACs all day will be detrimental to the environment. But this does not imply that you skip Window ACs to save mother earth. The best way to go about this is to turn off the Window AC once in a while. 

You can use the energy saver or sleep mode function that will automatically turn off the Window AC during the middle of the night. Another way is to turn off the Window ACs when it has already reached your desired temperature. By doing this, you can do your part in saving the environment. 

Running Window ACs Continuously Will Burn Much Power 

Window ACs are one of the high-energy consuming appliances. While advancements in the cooling system and the evolution of inverter technology, Window ACs will still burn more electricity. The longer these AC units run, the more energy and power they consume. It will then result in a higher electricity bill for you. 

After its constant functioning, Window ACs will reach the temperature you set on your thermostat. For this reason, the thermostat will signal and tap the Window ACs to slow down, making the air conditioner trip. Then, Window ACs will consume a lot of energy and cause your electricity bill to hike up. 

So turn off your window’s AC after a few hours to prevent this. But, of course, it is always better to keep your Window ACs off now and then. Window ACs will be more effective and efficient once it turned back on rather than letting them run continuously unattended for extended periods.

Running Window ACs Continuously Will be Inefficient in Dehumidifying the Air

As mentioned earlier, Window ACs work by dehumidifying the indoor air. To give you a quick recap, Window ACs will extract and take first the hot air inside the room. The hot air will then pass into a condenser that will be redirected outside. As the process goes on, Window ACs will attract moisture from the room and dehumidify the indoor air. 

However, this process will be less effective. Window ACs will not reach their optimum performance level if these units are left functioning all day. So, experts advised that you should run Window ACs at different intervals. That way, you can ensure that your Window ACs will work best instead of allowing them to run at full speed continuously. 

Running Window ACs Continuously Might be Harmful 

Running Window ACs for a long time can tremendously impact the power grid. As you might be aware, power surges can happen due to power outages or electrical spikes. These power surges can damage the compressor of Window ACs, leading to deterioration and malfunctioning. 

On top of that, if power cords are used directly from electric sockets in turning on the Window ACs, other cables may malfunction. Worst, once these cords explode, they may cause a fire.

While the probability may be slim, you do not want to take a risk. In addition, experts say that compressor is one of the costliest spare parts of air Window ACs. 

Other Reasons

  • Running Window ACs all day can degrade them faster. 
  • Running Window ACs all day can fill the air filters with pollution and dirt. 
  • Running Window ACs all day can spike up your cost of maintenance and repairs. 
  • Running Window ACs all day can be bad for your long-term health. 

How Many Hours Should Your Window AC Run per Day?

Typically, air conditioners should run for at least eight to twenty minutes every day. This will be more than enough to make you feel relaxed and comfortable. However, the time may vary based on the kind of AC unit, size, weather, and insulation levels. 

Unlike central ACs, which help cool down your whole house, Window ACs only work limitedly. In addition, Window ACs are less power efficient, so more hours are needed to function effectively. 

People should run Centrals ACs for eight hours a day to reach their maximum performance. On the other hand, Window ACs need twelve hours a day to make you feel pleasant. 

Can You Leave a Window Air Conditioner in All Winter?

An Open panel adjustment of a small room air conditioner

If you wonder if you can leave the Windows AC all winter, the answer is no. Before the first blast of winter snow comes, professionals advise that you need to remove your Window AC. The best time you can do this is during the autumn before the winter season has arrived. 

If the Window ACs are left unused and exposed to freezing temperatures like rain and snow, this will damage the inside parts and body of the Window AC. For instance, if rain enters the Window ACs, this will cause a dense and thick layer on the machine. Later, this heavy layer could cause window ACs to bend and crack inward. 

Also, snow can destroy the machine of the Window AC. Since snow is weighty, once it builds up and accumulates inside the unit, it will cause damage to the Window AC’s spare parts like the blower and condenser coils.

Along with that, winter air may escape and come inside your home, making you feel cold. Because of this, it would be safe to remove Window ACs before winter. To help you, here is a list of some of the tips you can follow to remove your Window ACs easily.  

Remove the Unit from the Window

The first step is to unplug the Window AC from the wall. If you use insulation and screws, you need to remove those things. Then, you have to jiggle the window ACs forward while lifting the window. To make your life easier while dragging the Window AC, it is better if you have a partner or your family to do this. 

Clean the Window AC

The next step is to clean the Window AC. If you store and keep the unit when it’s dirty, then chances would be the dirt can destroy the machine.

When cleaning, you need to start wiping the exterior of the Window AC with a solution made of vinegar and water. Afterward, you can use a small but firm brush to remove any dirt in the Window AC’s fin. 

Professionals advised that you let the Window ACs become fully dry before storing them. They also recommend replacing the filter. 

Store the Window AC Properly 

Now that you have entirely removed and cleaned the Window AC, the last step is to store it properly. You can place the unit there if you still have the original box when you bought the Window AC. But if you cannot find it anymore, find a box of similar sizes. Then, cover it with plastic or garbage bags. 

Remember that the safest place where you can keep your Window AC is inside your home. Never leave it outdoors to avoid any accident. Plus, if you leave it outside and it freezes, it is most likely that window ACs will deteriorate. Therefore, storage is necessary since it can prevent the Window AC from irreparable damage.