Keep your AC temperature at moderate to high levels in order for power saving as well as to cut your electricity bill
A move by the power ministry to increase the default temperature in air conditioners to 24 degrees celsius will help you save almost Rs 4,000 on annual electricity bills, apart from reducing energy consumption.
The Ministry of Power (Bureau of Energy Efficiency) has said that all room air conditioners (AC) will have to ensure a default temperature setting of temperature in the appliances at 24 degrees celsius from January 1, 2020.
How you save
A common misconception is that setting the thermostat at 18 degrees will cool down a room faster. However, that’s not true. It will take the same amount of time for the room to reach 26 degrees—which is significantly cooler than the average current outdoor temperature of 40 degrees in Delhi—whether you set the temperature at 18 degrees or 26 degrees. Of course, 18 degrees will be much cooler than 26 degrees, if that’s what you prefer.
The Bureau of Energy Efficiency (a body of the Ministry of Power) has said that the reduction in AC temperatures to 24 degrees from the conventional 18-21 degrees can result in 24 percent of energy savings.
Countries like Japan and the US have already put in regulations for the functioning of air conditioners. Japan introduced a default setting for air conditioners at 28 degrees Celsius. In the United States, some places have enforced limits on lowering the air condition beyond 26 degrees celsius.
The Bureau of Energy Efficiency estimates that considering the current market trend, the total connected load in India due to air conditioning will be about 200 GW by 2030. This may further increase as only 6 percent of households are using one or more air conditioners at present.
If the measures are followed by all consumers, India can save about 23 billion units of electricity. The total installed capacity of air conditioner is about 80 million TR (tons of refrigeration or amount of cooling required to convert 1000 Kg of water into one tonne of ice in 24 hours), which will increase to about 250 million TR in 2030. The demand for room ACs in India is expected to touch one billion units by 2050, compared to 6.5 million units right now. On the other hand, ACs account for 10 percent of global energy consumption.
Would it be feasible to have the AC temperature at 24 degrees in humid weather?
The Normal human body temperature is 36-37 degree Celsius. Hence, taking a temperature closer to 24 degrees is considered to be healthier for individuals in tropical regions like India. The ministry says that, as per the comfort chart, temperatures up to 25 degrees are quite comfortable for the human body, along with the desired humidity and air movement values.
According to ASHRAE Standard 55-2013 Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy, The thermal comfort zone is the condition of the mind which expresses satisfaction with the thermal environment. This condition is defined using temperature, humidity level, and airflow experienced by the human body, apart from individual parameters such as clothing and metabolism. Technical analysis indicates that, in order to achieve the desired comfort level at a steady state, the temperature setting can be 24-25 degrees Celsius.
Things to remember
The power consumption of an AC doesn’t just depend on the temperature you set it at. How much power your AC consumes depends on its star rating, the outside temperature, the hours of usage, the size of the room, the number of people in the room, the insulation in the room, etc.
If you are setting the AC at a low temperature and using a quilt or a blanket, it is not only unhealthy, but it is also a pure waste of energy.
Normal human body temperature is approximately 36-37 degrees and putting your body through extremely high temperatures on the outside and low temperatures on the inside can affect your health.
So increase the temperature of your AC and keep it at moderate levels in order to not only conserve power but also save on electricity bills.