Installing Air Conditioning in Spain

The sun is shining, and the temperatures are rising: great news if you’re hoping to work on your tan, but not so great if you like cooler temperatures when you sleep or relax at home. Summers in Spain can be extremely hot, and the high temperatures can take a lot of getting used to for ex pats, particularly those from typically cooler countries, such as the UK.

But there’s no need to suffer in the heat, when it is viable to install air conditioning into many Spanish homes.

Here’s everything you need to know about installing air conditioning and ensuring you can always keep your cool:

Choosing the Right Air Conditioning Unit for You

There are several different types of air conditioning unit and choosing the right one will be key to finding the option that is the best, and most affordable, fit for you. The Split system is the most common type of air conditioning unit in Spain. This is a unit which is literally ‘split’ into an internal and external device: the external element goes outside the home (in your garden, on your balcony, or any other appropriate outdoor space) whilst the internal unit stays in the home (the clue’s in the name!). One external split device can operate several internal systems, to keep several rooms cool, but of course the more rooms you want to cool at any given time the higher the costs will be.

Your initially financial outlay for a Split 1x1 system will depend on both the cooling power and the brand you choose, but average prices range between €400 and €1,400, meaning that you’re sure to find the one that will suit your budget. Don’t forget to also allocate funds for your installation costs, which for Split systems will cost around €375.

Looking for something with smaller initial costs? Then why not look for a wall mounted compact air con device. These don’t require an external unit (meaning there will be no installation costs for this) and can also be portable, meaning it can follow you from room to room. These compact devices cost  between €350 to €600 to purchase initially, but buyer beware: they do have higher electricity consumption, meaning they will add more to your monthly bills in the summer months, compared to a split unit.

Top Tips for Choosing an Air Conditioning Unit

So, what is the most important thing to look for when choosing an air conditioning unit? Should energy efficiency or cooling power be at the top of your wish list? Here are our top tips:

  • Your air conditioning retailer will talk to you about ‘frigorias’ (or freezeries). This is how the power of an air conditioner is determined: but it’s important to note that it is not just the frigorias that will determine  how cool your room will be (or how quickly it will reach that cool state). The size of your home, the room, the number of hot bodies in it, the external temperature, and the geographical position of your home will all also be a factor. Ensure that you discuss all of these factors before you invest in a unit, as well as just how many freezeries it has.
  • If you want to keep your running costs as low as possible then look for a device with the highest possible energy performance certificate rating. The best of these is an A+++ rating and, when compared to a unit with a G rating (the lowest possible energy efficient rating) can save you up to 125 percent of energy, and the costs related with this.
  • Look for an air conditioner that uses Inverter technology. This is a system that regulates the speed of the compressor so that it works both constantly and as efficiently as possible. This serves two important functions: firstly, it will make your device quieter and secondly, it will ensure the device lasts longer whilst keeping your energy bills as low as possible.

Time to Talk Money!

So, you’ve determined that an air conditioning unit would be better for keeping you cool than trying to sleep in your swimming pool, but can you afford to run one? It’s time to talk money!

The cost of running an air conditioner will vary wildly depending on the model you choose, the size of the room you want it to cool, and its efficiency. But to give you a starting point for your calculations, if we assume that you will pay the average price for a  kWh of electricity in Spain over the last 12 months, which is €0.097, and  that the average consumption of your air conditioner is  2 kW per hour then the following costs would apply to having a single air conditioning unit in your home.

For one hour it costs approximately €0.19, which would add €5.82 to your monthly electricity bill if the air conditioner was switched on for just one hour a day for 30 days. It is unlikely, however, that you would only run your device for one hour a day! If you had it on for 10 hours a day, the 20kW daily consumption would cost €1.94 per day, €58.20 per month: a more realistic figure for people that work outside the home. And if you have it on all the time, or for 24 hours a day, the 48kW of daily consumption would be €4.65, adding €139.68 to the monthly bill.

 Do you love the Spanish summer sun? Perhaps you’re looking for a Spanish holiday home, or hope to relocate to Spain so that you can enjoy the sunshine all year round? Why not get in touch with our locally based estate agents, Right Casa, who are perfectly positioned to help you find the Spanish home of your dreams.