Most of us may wonder how our predecessors ever managed to get along without an air conditioner. Today an air conditioner is not only a convenience; in some climates, it’s almost a necessity.
The only problem with this invention of modern man is that it can be very noisy. The condenser and fan of the air conditioner can be so noisy it keeps one awake at night. Sleepers may be abruptly awakened as the unit cycles on and off. This is especially true for those of us who are noise-sensitive.
Admittedly, most of us hear noises at different levels, and what bothers one person may not bother another. Window-mounted or room-mounted air conditioners tend to be the noisiest, reaching about 60 decibels of noise, the same noise level as if someone was having a conversation in the room with you.
Apartment dwellers are often the most affected. That’s because their air conditioners are usually located indoors with them. Thankfully, manufacturers are tuning in to this specialized need, and providing what is called a “silent” or “quiet” air conditioner.
How Does A Quiet Air Conditioner Work?
All air conditioners emit some noise. However, a quiet air conditioner operates with a low hum instead of a loud mechanical noise. It is designed with a buffer that is located around the condenser to muffle the noise. The fan of the unit is also specially designed so that it works more efficiently and silently.
How will you know if an air conditioner you want to buy is a quiet model? There are units that are specifically branded this way, so look carefully at the package. Unfortunately, most models don’t list the exact noise level of the unit, so check customer reviews to find out which air conditioner will best fit your needs before you buy.
It’s possible you may have to pay a little more for this feature; however, prices are coming down as demand increases. Certain manufacturers, such as Friedrich, are known for supplying the quietest air conditioners overall.
Quiet models come with other consumer-pleasing features that make them very attractive to buy. For instance, many models are energy efficient, and they have digital remote control of temperature.
Manufacturers who produce quiet air conditioners warn that it’s important to be certain your unit is properly installed. If it’s not, it will not operate as it should, and may be noisier than it is rated.
If A Quiet Air Conditioner Isn’t Quiet Enough
Some people are ultra-sensitive to noise. For such people, there is really only one good answer: locate the air conditioner outside. A ductless mini-split air conditioner does not require installation in a window and is much quieter because the condenser is located outdoors. All that it requires is a hole in the exterior wall, to route a pipe from the outdoor components to the indoor parts.
This can be a viable option for any homeowner who does not have central air conditioning and wants to keep the cost of air conditioning low. It has the added bonus that it can be configured as a source of heat as well as cooling.
Fortunately, none of us have to choose between keeping cool and getting a good night’s sleep. Silent air conditioners give us the best of both worlds.