Inverter AC Vs Non-Inverter AC, Which One is Right For You?

A lot of people argue whether an inverter AC is a good choice or is it just an expensive fad and it is hilarious to see how both the parties are semi-wrong. Yes, it is true that an inverter AC can help you save an uptick of 50% in electricity bill savings. But it is also true that a baseline inverter AC might be a bit pricier. 

Today, we have decided to end all these arguments once and for all. This article is the ultimate showdown of the inverter AC and the non-inverter AC. We will be discussing what exactly both of these are, how they function, how are they classified in comparison with each other, and a bunch of other questions. You ready? Ok, let us jump right into the article. 

How does an Air Conditioner Work?

Air conditioners work on the principle of refrigeration. They use a coolant liquid called a refrigerant for cooling the air in the room by converting the liquid to gas and then back to liquid again.

How does AC Works

Firstly, the warm air inside the room is collected by the internal unit of the AC. The compressor converts the refrigerant coolant liquid into a gas and pumps it onto the coils inside the inside unit. 

Apart from the refrigerants, ACs also introduce various special chemicals which all condense on these coils. These refrigerants and the chemicals have special properties which, when subjected to compression, enter a low-temperature state.

The warm air that has been collected inside will be passed onto these very cool coils which will absorb all the heat in the air and displace it with their own coolness. This cooling process is called as phase conversion.

While the inside unit tends to the cooling of the room, the outside unit has the compressor and it has a secondary yet very important function. The compressor can be either rotary or reciprocating. To convert the gas back to liquid again. This is so that the cooling efficiency of the air conditioner is maintained. 

The compressor will subject the produced gas to high pressures at which it converts back to the refrigerant liquid. During this process, it generates a lot of heat which is disposed off the unit with the large fans that you see in ACs as hot air.

How does an Home AC Works

The entire process goes on and on in a cyclical loop which ensures that the room is cool, at all times. 

What are inverter ACs and why do we need them?

Compressors have a single job. To compress the gas to liquid and dispose off the hot air that has been generated. In a regular air conditioner, the temperature in a room is maintained by constantly cooling the warm air. 

This calls for the constant conversion of the refrigerant to gas and back to liquid again. For this to happen, a compressor turns on, condenses the gas to liquid and then turns off. This is a constant process and the amount of electricity needed to turn on the compressor on and off each time is humungous. 

It puts obvious pressure and high load is too much. Inverter technology solves this problem by keeping the compressor on at all times. This solves the problem of having to turn on the compressor every once in a while. 

But if it is always on, wouldn’t it be needing constant gas to compress? What if there is no gas to compress but the compressor is turned on? 

Inverter Technology

An inverter basically acts as a controller of the compressor and its action. Compared to the conventional AC where the compressor is turned on and off depending on its use case of compressing the gas to a liquid, an inverter AC has its compressor turned on at all times. 

The only difference is that the compressor’s speed is variable. For instance, here, the compressor flows at a low speed when it is not required and when it is required to condense the gas to a liquid, it turns back on at full speed. 

To put this in perspective, imagine you wish to maintain the bedroom at 22 degrees using the air conditioner. A conventional air conditioner sucks in the air, cools it and expels the hot air outside and as soon as the temperature reaches 22 degrees, the air conditioner just pumps out normal air. When the temperature rises, the compressor turns on and automatically the process goes on in a cycle. 

In an inverter AC, the initial process of cooling the room is the same. The thermostat inside the unit constantly monitors the temperature of the room while keeping the compressor on a standby mode. Whenever there is a dip or increase in the temperature, the unit controls it and the compressor acts thereby maintaining the temperature. 

This essentially eliminates the need to constantly turn on the compressor. It also helps ensure in better cooling of the room. Because let us face it. When you are cooling a room with a conventional air conditioner, you tend to lose out some coolness or are subjected to higher temperatures (a degree or two indifference) because of the time delay it takes for the compressor to turn on and compensate for the temperature gap.

Differences between an inverter AC and a non-inverter AC

By now, you should be having a pretty good understanding of how an inverter AC is different from a normal non-inverter air conditioner.

But just to make it even more simple, understanding and plain, let us explain a few more differences between both the technologies and the air conditioner units. This time, with a neat table.

Non-Inverter ACInverter AC
Has a compressor motor with fixed start and stop cycles which consume a lot of energy.Has a variable frequency motor which is constantly and adjusts its speed according to the cooling required in the room
A non-inverter AC creates considerable noise because the compressor unit constantly needs to be turned on and OFFAs there is no need for the compressor to be turned on and off, an inverter AC is a lot quieter and noiseless compared the conventional AC
Works to regulate and create a certain temperature in a room. Works towards maintaining temperature in a room rather than simply cooling it. 
Is not so much on energy savings. Can help you save up to a maximum of 50% in your electricity bills.
Comparatively cheaper and budget-friendly. You can actually find a simple air conditioner below 10-15,000 rupeesInverter AC units are comparatively expensive than the non-inverter conventional air conditioners.
Has the standard air filtersInverter ACs come with a wide range of air filters such as carbon, HEPA, blu, etc.,
Produces Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) which are harmful for the environmentAre more eco friendly than non-inverter ACs
Takes their own time to cool down the roomFaster in cooling down the room

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does Inverter ACs cool down the room slowly than a regular air conditioner?

No. It is actually the opposite. Both of these air conditioners cool down the room in a similar pace but the inverter AC cools down the room faster. Sure, the non-inverter blows in the cool air but you are forgetting the very essential thing that constitutes of the inverter AC. 
An inverter AC is more on to control the temperature of the room rather than cool it or heat it up in a jiffy. So technically speaking, an inverter AC actually cools down the room faster than a non-inverter AC

2. Which saves more energy? Inverter AC or a Non-Inverter regular air conditioner?

Did you know that the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (the BEE) which gives out the star rating for electrical appliances has concluded this argument. It says that a simple BEE 3-star inverter AC can save as high as 7% of energy when compared to a BEE 5 star normal split AC. 

3. Are inverter ACs available in the window models?

No. Inverter Air conditioners are only available in split AC unit models. They are not available in window models. Also, given the bare existence and low preference for the window models, it is highly unlikely that there would be any possible line of window inverter ACs anytime soon.

Wrapping it up:

Which one is the best pick? An Inverter AC vs a Non-inverter conventional AC

The simple default answer would be that an inverter AC is definitely a great and better option when compared to a non-inverter Air conditioner. This is after we take into consideration all the facts such as the energy savings, cooling efficiency, bill savings and among a lot of other features. 

But why are non-inverter ACs even being made and if so, why do people still buy them? The simple answer is that non-inverter ACs come at a comparatively very low cost and they can easily fit in within shoestring budgets. But if you are to make a choice, we would suggest that you go ahead with an inverter model as with this, the savings come in unlimited future instalments. 

Do check out our buying guide on the list of the best inverter air conditioners in India (1 Ton, 1.5 Ton, 2 Ton). We also came up with a list of the best non-inverter ACs to buy in India here.