Question by Amazon: How do I find out how many watts my Air Conditioner System uses?
I want to try and get either some Solar Panels and/or Wind Generators to use to power my Air Conditioner System.
Answer by John W
You can forget it unless you’re Bill Gates. But if it takes a brick to hit your head before you realize the staggering amount of energy used by air conditioners, the airconditioner is on two circuits in your breaker panel to give it 240V AC power, you can carefully take off the front panel of your circuit breaker exposing the wires connected to each breaker and clamp on an ammeter to those circuit breakers, the current should be the same on both breakers as the current passes through both breakers, the power is this current multiplied by 240V. You should use a clamp on multimeter with a peak hold so you can also measure the peak draw as the compressors start up as that will be many times that of it’s normal usage.
There are two approaches to solar airconditioning, there are absorption chillers which use heat instead of compressors for the refrigeration cycle but these are the most efficient at 1,500 tons of AC so they are only practical for large campuses. The other approach is to use efficient DC compressors so that you avoid the inefficiencies of an inverter but these DC air conditioners are still small AC’s as solar panels are expensive. You would probably have to replace your air conditioner with a much more efficient DC unit and you would probably have a hard time finding one as large as the one you have now.
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