Can You Put Window Air Conditioner in the Wall?
Perhaps your home’s through-the-wall AC has suddenly stopped working, but you can’t afford to replace it now. Or your house doesn’t have a window, yet you already have a window AC in place. Can you put it instead in the wall and still get an effective cooling effect as it would give from a window?
Yes, you can put a window air conditioner in the wall only if you use a slide-out chassis type of sleeves in the installation process. Also, there are a few modifications you must make. Where are the air vents located? Typically, a window air conditioner would vent from the back and its sides. Therefore, you must ensure the wall doesn’t block its vents and cause overheating.
This article will take you on a step-by-step guide on how you can put a window air conditioner on the wall. But first,
What is a Window Air Conditioner?
A window air conditioner is a single unit that comes with all its components in one casing. This is the most straightforward air conditioner you’ll ever come across. It’s usually installed in a window, though not permanently, to enable you to move it from one window to the next.
This flexibility makes a window AC much convenient. Although this type of AC is designed for windows, you can also put it on a wall as you’ll learn how later. This is most common in houses with no windows or if you prefer to use the window for something else.
A window AC will not affect your home’s HVAC system in any way since it operates separately. You only need to plug it in the electrical outlet to enjoy the cool breeze from the unit.
How Does a Window AC Work?
A window AC employs refrigeration principles to extract heat and humidity from your house and, at the same time, cools the air that circulates into the room. This is the same method used in all the AC units.
A complete AC unit comprises the following components. A thermostat, blower or fan, condenser and evaporator coils, refrigerant tube, and a compressor. As your room’s temperature rises, the heat will trigger the thermostat, which turns on the blower.
Then, the hot air in the room passes through to the refrigerant coils to cool off since these coils are cold. The cold air then circulates into the house to lower its temperature.
What matters in a window air conditioner is its size. The bigger ones cool the rooms too fast without properly removing their humidity, while the smaller ones have to work overtime to cool the rooms.
Therefore, before heading out there to purchase your window AC, ensure you first take the measurements of the room you’ll use it in. This is because each type can only cool specified square footage.
How to Install a Window Air Conditioner in the Wall
Most people would instead let their windows be for one reason or the other. So, you will find them using window air conditioners but not how they should be used. Besides, what will you use as an alternative escape route if you can’t reach the door during an emergency? Suppose your room has only one window and you’ve put your window AC there.
Here is how you can install your window air conditioner yourself in the wall.
Step 1: Make a Frame that Your Window AC Can Fit Around Perfectly
The first thing to do is to install the AC brackets on the AC unit, as illustrated in the manual. Then head on to make a frame for the AC, but first, you need to measure its length and width. This will help you make the right size of the required fame. Then you can proceed to cut the wood you’re using to make the frame as per the measurements. Remember, the measurements are of the inside of the frame, not the outside.
Then, use deck screws to connect your pieces into a square or rectangular frame. It’s because different window ACs have different sizes. That means that whatever frame you make should reflect the size of the AC you bought. Your AC unit must fit perfectly around this frame from the unit’s backside once you’ve connected the four sides.
Ensure you test it on the AC unit before installing it into the unit. See if it requires any adjustments and correct accordingly. You sure don’t want to make your corrections after installing the frame into the AC unit because that will be a lot of work.
This frame will be your ACs template against the wall. Use it to put some markings on the wall to know precisely the size of the hole you’ll be drilling. That is, the right size for the frame to fit.
Step 2: Drilling a Hole In the Wall
Installing a window air conditioner in the room requires you to make a hole yourself in the walls. This is because not all rooms have fixes ready for installation. To drill a hole in your wall, start with picking the right spot, far away from any electrical wiring in the house. You can use a stud finder for this very purpose. Then, for the type of wall you’re drilling, ensure you have the right tools.
Use the frame afterward to mark where you’ll be drilling. Then, using a level, make some straight lines. Take your drill after taking care of all the factors above. Make sure you operate your power drill with steady hands because any slight mistake would mean incurring more costs. This is possible only if you’re a DIY enthusiast. Otherwise, you could get someone to do it for you.
You need to test if the frame would fit inside that hole. If it doesn’t, make the necessary adjustments before you proceed to the next step. Then, using the deck screws, connect your frame to the wall. If your AC is heavy, you can use bolts to hold the frame in place.
Step 3: Put Your AC Unit inside the Hole in the Wall from the Inside
You need to test again if the unit would fit in this hole perfectly. Remember, the AC brackets you installed earlier should prevent the AC from going through to the other side.
Then, using deck screws or bolts, connect the brackets to the frame at the bottom and top to ensure it stays firm and in place. You can then use caulking to seal any other space left space on the sides between the AC unit and the frame. The caulking will also prevent bugs and ants from coming in.
Step 4: Turn On Your AC
At this stage, you want to ensure your AC works well. Therefore, you should turn it on to see. If it does work as it should, then you’ve done an excellent job. Remember to also put a frame around the AC unit on the inside to cover all the scenes.
Step5: Put a Shade over the Unit from the Outside
Now, turn your attention outside. First, using caulking, seal any cracks on the wall to prevent ants and bugs from getting in. Then put a shade over your AC unit to protect it against water.
As you can see from this article, it’s possible to put a window AC on the wall. However, you must ensure you don’t block the vents in the process. Use the step-by-step guide in this article to properly put your window air conditioner on the wall.