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Can I run my aircon with solar power?

Looking to reduce your footprint or energy bill? You can power your air conditioner with solar panels. Besides the air conditioner itself, you will need solar panels, an inverter to convert the current, and optionally a battery for storage. Daikin Perfera is a recommended air conditioner for solar power due to its efficiency and smart features.
Shows a landscape with solar panels and an aircon above it with the sun shining

What do I need to run my aircon with solar power?

  1. Aircon
  2. Solar Panels
  3. Inverter
  4. Battery (optional)

1. Aircon

What type of aircon should you choose to run with your solar panels?

Firstly, it’s important to choose an air conditioner that is correctly sized for your room. Too big will put your electrical network under strain and too small will cause technical and comfort issues. To ensure you have the correct unit, use our aircon simulator or plan in a free technical site visit.

Secondly, you’ll want to purchase an air conditioner that is energy efficient and allows you to monitor its energy consumption through an application. The perfect unit for this is the Daikin Perfera. With its application you can control your aircon from anywhere in the world and monitor its energy consumption.

Shows the Daikin Perfera in close-up with its flaps open

2. Solar Panels

How many solar panels do I need to power my aircon?

Shows a digital image of a house being powered by solar power

The number of solar panels you need is of course depending on your total electricity consumption and the size of your air conditioner.

To determine how many solar panels, you need for your aircon, we’ll look at the average generation of one solar panel. In this simplified example we’ll take one solar panel that generates on average around 400 watts.

Your average household air conditioner for a bedroom is around 3.5kW or 3.500 watts. This means if you have a solar panel that generates around 400 watts, you will need 8.75 (9) solar panels.

3.500 / 400 = 8.75

Bear in mind that in case of an inverter air conditioner, your unit will just maintain the temperature in the room and therefore will use significantly less electricity. So potentially a 25% correction can be applied (-2 solar panels) to sufficiently provide for your consumption.

3. Inverter

What is an inverter?

Your solar panels produce direct current. The sun shining on your solar panel produces an electric flow in one direction, which is called a Direct Current (DC).

However, your traditional household appliances use Alternating Current (AC). This means you will need to install an inverter to transfer your DC power to AC.

Shows a graph that explains the difference between AC and DC power

4. Battery

In order to have your aircon work with solar power, you have two options:

Option 1: On-grid Solution: Aircon + Solar + Inverter

In this option you remain tied to your grid. You will connect your solar panels and inverter directly to the municipal grid. During the sunny hours your solar panels will generate the electricity required for your air conditioner. During those hours you are saving money on your electrical consumption.

When there is no solar generation, your aircon will use the traditional grid supply. This also means in case of load shedding, your aircon will not be able to operate.

Option 2: Off-grid Solution: Aircon + Solar + Inverter + Battery

If you are totally fed up with load shedding or want to reduce your dependance on the municipal grid, you could opt for the off-grid solution.

In this case you will need to add a battery that can store any excess electricity generated throughout the day. With this battery you can power your aircon during the night or moments your solar panels are not producing enough electricity.

Why should you power your aircons with solar?

Reducing your electricity consumption

With solar panels you can offset your electricity production during sunny hours. If you include a battery within this, you can use your aircon any moment of the day with free generated electricity.

Reducing your environmental footprint

Solar panels are a form of renewable energy source. By using this electricity, you reduce your reliance on the municipal electricity grid which is not always generated in a renewable way.

Less load on the electricity grid

By using an aircon and solar power, you are actively contributing to a reduction of the pressure on the national grid (kudos to you!).

Why should you not power your aircons with solar?

Primary Investment

Solar panels and a battery require an initial investment that can add up. It is however important to keep in mind the entire savings you will make throughout the lifetime of the equipment. Solar panels are also allowing you to power other appliances with this renewable energy.

What is the best aircon to combine with solar panels?

Daikin Perfera

Even if you do not combine this unit with solar panels, you are getting the most energy efficient aircon available in Cape Town.

Daikin Perfera wall-mounted indoor aircon

The Daikin Perfera is a wall-mounted air-to-air heat pump that that can cool and heat your home very efficiently.

It has an energy rating of up to A+++, so it will save you money on your energy bills and help you reduce your environmental impact.

The Perfera also has intelligent air purification features that use smart filter technologies to remove allergens and odors from your home, so you can breathe clean, pure air.

Another perk of the Perfera is that it is smart climate controlled. You can easily manage it with the infrared remote or via an app, Alexa, or Google Home.

Ready to buy your Daikin Perfera?

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