How Much Electricity Does A Window AC Actually Consume: A Quick Guide

This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Are you considering buying a new window air conditioning unit but aren’t sure it’s worth the price?

Would you like to know how much an air conditioner costs each month?

This guide will help if you’re having trouble.

We’ll not only tell you how much power a window AC uses, but we’ll also share ways to determine how much it costs to use a window AC per hour.

How Much Electricity Does a Window AC Consume?

The answer to this depends.

Because each window air conditioner requires a different amount of electricity, it’s best to buy one that matches your energy consumption needs.

Most people who ask “How much does Window Air Conditioning Cost?” want an answer to the question “How will it affect my monthly electric bill?”

  • The amount your utility company charges for electricity per kilowatt-hour (kWh).
  • The wattage is needed for your window air conditioner to operate.

Each county, state, and city charges a different rate for electricity usage.

  • Appalachian Electric Power Residential clients in Virginia pay approximately $11.10 per kWh for electricity.
  • Residents of Northern Nevada pay 9.20 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), while residents of Southern Nevada pay 11.20 cents per kWh.
  • San Francisco, California, residents pay $22.10 for each kilowatt-hour they use.
  • As you can see, the cost per kWh varies across the United States; however, the national average is 13 cents per kWh.

To know what you’re paying for electricity each month, look at your last monthly electricity bill or visit your local utility’s website to see the posted rate.

Determine Your Window AC Electricity Consumption (Watts)

Electricity Window AC

When shopping for a new window air conditioner, look for one with BTUs rather than amps or watts.

BTUs (British Thermal Units) is a global standard for determining the cooling capacity of an AC unit. It tells you how ample a space the AC unit can cool.

For example, a 10,000 Btu window air conditioner can cool a room of 20 feet by 22 feet.

However, this problem is that not all air conditioning units with the same BTU ratings use the same amount of energy to operate.

One 10,000BTU air conditioner can consume 900 watts of electricity, while another consumes 1,000 watts.

The total wattage depends on how energy efficient the manufacturers made the appliance.

How can you figure out how much wattage an air conditioner uses?

  • Read the product manual.
  • Look at the technical specifications on the manufacturer’s (advertising firm’s) site.

If you know the wattage of an air conditioner, you can calculate the cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh) you spend on electricity at home.

To calculate how much it will cost to operate the window air conditioning unit each hour, day, week, month, and during a whole year, use the following formula.

Calculate the Monthly Cost of Electricity

It is easy to determine how many kilowatts an air conditioner uses and the monthly cost of running it.

The formula for calculating operating costs is:

  • Number of watts x 1 (hour of use) ÷ 1,000 x 0.13 (kWh) = operation charges per hour

This is an example of a window air conditioner that uses 650 watts.

  • 650 x 1 ÷ 1,000 x 0.13 (kWh) = $0.084 hourly cost of operation

Once you know the hourly cost of operating an air conditioner, you can calculate the total daily, monthly, and yearly costs.

Let’s say you run an air conditioner for eight hours a day. Here’s the calculation of the cost of operating a 550-watt AC device:

  • $0.084 x 8 (hours per day) = $0.67 daily
  • $0.67 x 7 (days per week) = $5 per week
  • $5 x 4 (weeks per month) = $20 per month

Average Monthly Window AC Costs

Electricity Window AC

How much does it usually cost to use an air conditioner?

Let’s take the national average of running an air conditioner for eight hours per day and also consider the national average of the cost of electricity at $0.13 per kilowatt-hour (kWh).

Then, you can estimate the monthly costs of operating these different-sized window units.

  • 500 Watt AC(5,000 BTU) = $15.82 per month
  • 660 Watt AC (8,000 BTU) = $20.88 per month
  • 800 Watt AC (9,000 BTU) = $25.31 per month
  • 900 Watt AC (10,000 BTU) = $28.57 per month
  • 1,100 Watt AC (12,000 BTU) = $31.80 per month
  • 1,300 Watt AC (14,000 BTU) = $41.13 per month

Factors That Impact Your Monthly Cost to Run a Window AC Unit

Both the traditional energy efficiency ratio (EER) and seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) are ratios that measure the efficacy of a window AC unit.

Every window air conditioner will have a large yellow label called the “energy guide.”

Additionally, on that sticker, there will be an EER or SEIR number and the expected annual electricity cost to operate the device.

The rule is that the lower the energy efficiency rating (SEER or EER), the more efficient the window air conditioner. It means less cost and electricity to run each month.

If the window air conditioner you have uses more watts per hour than a similar product, it will have a higher EER or SEER rating and cost more.

Indoor Temperature

Electricity Window AC

The temperature you set your window air conditioner at can also affect energy usage.

When the cooling cycle begins, the appliance uses more electricity to cool the room.

Once the set temperature has been reached, the cycle turns itself off, and just the fan blows, which uses less electricity.

If you’re setting your thermostat to 62 degrees Fahrenheit, the device might take a long time to reach that temperature, increasing your electricity bill.

Outdoor Climate

If the temperature is really hot outside, the air conditioner may be unable to cool down the room to the desired level. That is because the units must compete too hard against ambient heat.

If that happens, the window air conditioner will continue running at full blast without turning off the cool cycle, increasing your operating costs.

If you live in a very hot location, you may be able to expect to pay more each day for an AC unit.

Open Windows and Doors

If you have a central air conditioning unit running in a room with an open window or door, the device has to work harder to cool the space.

If you have an enclosed area, your AC will have to work less as the air-conditioned air is contained.

Window Air Conditioner Filter

Electricity Window AC

You probably didn’t know that your window AC has an air filter.

It sure does, but its purpose is to keep dirt and dust from damaging the inner system of the car.

Unfortunately, the air filter gets blocked up quickly, and if you do not clean it, the efficiency of your window AC system can drop.

Cleaning your air filter regularly helps improve the cooling efficiency of an air conditioner and reduces its operating costs.

Maximizing Your Use of a Window AC System

You learned how much power an air conditioner use and how much it costs to operate an air conditioner. And, as you’ve found, the answers depend upon the efficacy of the appliance and factors that may be beyond your control.

One thing you can do to keep your costs low is use the air conditioner only when necessary.

Many often leave their windows open all day long because they’re likely to forget about them. However, turning it off when you’re not using it or running it for just an hour every few days can help you reduce your monthly electricity bill.

You can also ensure that the window air conditioner is appropriately sized for your room

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.