What is a Room Air Conditioner?
This is the oldest type of air conditioner and consists of a single
box unit which can be installed in a window (and thus can be removed and
later reinstalled elsewhere) or a hole cut in a wall.
These systems are generally small in size and cannot condition larger
areas of houses. However they may be appropriate for use in a
small bedroom, caravan, or portable building.
The main disadvantage of them is noise. The compressor is
located immediately behind the air vents, and so the noisiest part of
the machine cannot be isolated from the air vents. A possible
advantage is that they generally require no fixed wiring (they can
generally plug into a standard power outlet), and do not require
refrigerant to be loaded and so they can be installed by a home
handyman. Other types of machines must, by law, be installed by a
licensed installer as they involve fixed wiring and refrigerant
Technologically speaking they have been surpassed by modern
split-system air conditioners, but may be
required to be retro-fitted as replacements for obsolete units in older
The room air conditioner is a self-contained unit which
can be installed in a window or a hole in the wall.