Inverter Ac vs 5 Star Ac – Which One To Choose?

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If you are looking for an option to reduce room temperature but also save on the monthly electricity bills you have landed on the right page. There are quite a few things that you need to know to differentiate an inverter ac and a 5 star Ac. What are they, how do they work, and ultimately which is better at saving energy, inverter AC or a 5 star?

You must know that there are two types of AC. The first type is the Inverter AC and the second type is Non-Inverter AC. Non-Inverter AC is also known as the traditional AC that comes with a 5-star rating. There are also 5-star inverter AC. `

In this article, we have provided a guide that will help you distinguish between the two. Read carefully and then make the right decision.

What is an Inverter AC

Many people believe that Inverter ACs work on inverters during power cuts. This is the biggest misconception people have regarding this.

An Inverter AC has a controllable compressor motor that continuously regulates and checks on the inside temperature. The compressor of the AC always remains in the “ON” condition. Even though the compressor always stays ON, it can save a lot of electricity compared to a non-inverter AC.

How does it work?

These ACs have shifting speed motors. These motors adjust the speed of the compressor according to the temperature requirement. After the room reaches the desired temperature, the compressor motor does not stop. Instead, it runs the motor at minimum speed and maintains the temperature of the room. As the motor does not turn off, it saves electricity by at least 40%.

An Inverter AC attains full power the moment it is turned ON and never stops consuming very little power. This lowers the consumption of electricity and reduces the bill by 20%.

On the contrary, a non-inverter AC  motor starts and stops to maintain a steady room temperature. Each time it starts it consumes a lot of electricity which ultimately increases your electricity by a minimum of 30%.

The lifespan of these inverter ACs are more as the motor runs continuously and does not need to work hard. These ACs do not have their motors turn ON and OFF continuously, thus, making less noise. Also when the motor runs continuously, the chance of wear and tear between the parts reduces.

What is a 5-star AC?

You will see the term BEE star rating for Non-Inverter as well as Inverter ACs. BEE is a government agency in India. BEE stands for Bureau of Energy Efficiency.

The energy rating that BEE issues are represented in the form of stars. The efficiency of AC depends on BEE ratings. Each star in the rating varies between a range of levels of energy efficiency.

BEE rating is calculated on the basis depending on the total amount of energy consumed annually by the AC per unit cooling volume. The formula used to calculate energy efficiency is given by:

(k* annual energy consumption +c) / AC capacity

Where: k and c are constants used for adjustment.

In the Indian market, for Inverter AC, you will come across three types of ratings- 3, 4, and 5 stars. In the case of Non-Inverter ACs, the rating ranges from 1 to 5. But, you will hardly come across any models that have 1 or 2-star ratings.

3-star ratings of Non-Inverter ACs are the models having the lowest energy efficiency, 4-star ACs are a little more energy-efficient and 5-star ACs are the most energy-efficient.

Usually, there is a belief that BEE 3-star Inverter ACs are better compared to BEE 5-star Non-Inverter ACs. But it is not always true. The efficiency range for BEE 3-star Inverter AC lies between 3.5 and 3.99 ISEER.

*** ISEER stands for the total amount of heat removed annually.

The efficiency range of 5 star Non-Inverter ACs are more than 3.5 ISEER. The most efficient ACs in the market are 4 as well as 5-star Inverter ACs. Some of the 5 star rated non-inverter ACs go below the range of 3.65 while hardly any 3-star inverter Acs go below 3.65 ISEER. You should always buy an AC with a higher efficiency rating. If a 5 star Non-Inverter AC has a rating higher than 3-star Inverter AC, you should buy the 5-star ac.

The ratings are frequently updated by BEE. Usually once or twice a year, they are updated. So, you should know that an AC that was rated 5 star in 2011, will be rated 3 star in the year 2016. The update makes sure that energy efficiency is maintained high. This becomes necessary as technology is also getting updated regularly.

Difference Between Inverter AC and 5-star AC

You might have got a slight idea about the main differences between the two. In this section of the article, we have listed all the differences between the two types of ACs.

Compressor speed

The key difference that you will find between Inverter AC and Non-inverter AC is the compressor functions. For an Inverter AC, the speed of the compressor is variable. The speed is adjusted based on the requirements. A Non-Inverter AC that is rated 5-star has a compressor that runs at a single speed. The speed of this AC changes according to the load as well as a number of people.

Need of stabilizer

Usually, a stabilizer is installed along with the AC to maintain the range of voltage during fluctuations of power. The range for this lies between 165V to 250V. An Inverter Ac is designed in a way that it does not require an Inverter. The components work properly even during power fluctuations. But as we don’t know how much power fluctuations will happen, it is best to install an inverter for a Non-Inverter AC. It keeps you on the safe side.

Required current

A Non-Inverter AC requires much more current than an Inverter AC. As an Inverter AC has a variable speed motor, the requirement of current is much less during startup. This particular condition also decides what will be the size of the inverter or generator of the AC. The current required by a Non-Inverter AC is 3 or 4 times more than an Inverter AC.

Power Factor

Power factor can be defined as the ratio between the real power that gets absorbed by the load to the apparent power that flows in the current. The consumption of electricity is less for high power factors. The power factor of an Inverter AC is close to unity. The power factor of a Non-Inverter AC is less.

Automatic adjustment

The speed of the motor of an Inverter AC gets adjusted according to the temperature of the room. This is because the motor compressor has a variable speed. A Non-Inverter AC cannot adjust itself according to the temperature of the room.


The compressor of a Non-Inverter AC turns ON and OFF during regular intervals. This makes noise. For an Inverter AC, the compressor is always ON. This makes much less noise.


The efficiency of an AC is determined by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency also known as BEE. An Inverter AC having a rating of 3-star is 7% more efficient in comparison with a 5-star Non-Inverter AC.


The price of a Non-Inverter AC is less than an Inverter AC. You can say that the price of Non-Inverter AC is 20% less than an Inverter AC. But, if you buy an Inverter AC it will save you electricity bills. So, for a long time investment, it is better to invest money in Inverter ACs.

BasisInverter AC5-Star AC
Compressor speedVariableFixed
Need of stabilizerNoBetter to install one
Required CurrentLessMore
Power factorClose to unityLess than Inverter AC
Automatic adjustmentMotor speed adjusts itself automatically.Motor speed does not adjust itself automatically.
Starting UpConsumes less power while startingConsumes more power while starting

Price difference between Inverter AC and 5-star rate AC

Brand 5 star AC (1.5 ton)Inverter AC (1.5 ton)
Blue Star4350035000

Final Word

Before buying an AC, it is best to do your research. While doing your research, you will understand which AC satisfies your needs. Knowing the things you should consider before buying an AC, will make the process much easier for you. We hope that after reading this guide, your confusion between Inverter AC and a 5-Star AC is clear. We hope that we have helped you make your mind on which AC you should buy. Do not hesitate to ask us any questions if you feel confused.

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