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Old 12.11.2020, 11:45
CheshireCa CheshireCa is offline
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Location: Zurich
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Thank you everyone for the replies!

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Does everybody know what a split AC is? It requires quite a large device to be mounted on the outside of the building. I'm not sure about the noise, but it certainly looks unsightly and I wouldn't be that keen on my neighbours having one.


It's not like a TV, bed etc because it is mounted outside the building.
A portable one does not require mounting. It will be places on the balcony, or just outside in the garden. The places I view have quite spacious private balconies or are ground floor and have a substantial private garden. Exactly for that reason. And also I like privacy.

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Also bear in mind that Zurich has quite prohibitive regulations regarding air conditioning:

https://translate.google.com/?sl=de&...l&op=translate

I assume it doesn't apply to portable ones, but it doesn't actually say that afaik.
I am planning to live in Hofe. From what I understood there is no law forbidding the split AC, especially not the portable ones.

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20K BTU is not a small one, old electrical installations might have a problem handling it. In Watts consumption it may be similar to a clothes iron, but we use irons for 0.5-1 hour while the AC compressor may be starting several times per hour for several hours.

Maybe not a worry in a single home, but in an apartment building with and old electrical installation there might be a case of every flat using a lot of energy at the same time and the AC may be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

Once my electric teapot failed and I found out my last flat had no circuit breakers but good old fashioned fuses. Then I found out the fuses where shared by 2 flats in the same floor and that it's impossible to buy a fuse on a Sunday. So a faulty teapot left me and my neighbor's kitchen without power for more than 1 day.......so careful with old installations.
This is actually a good point, thank you for raising it. I will have to check about the electrical supply. Though most apartments I was viewing were relatively new and modern, so I hope for this not to be a problem. Worst comes to worst, I can also use a small portable generator.

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Newish ones are quite quiet, I have 6 one of which has a noisy fan, the others are not an issue.


12k BTU is what I have in a small bedroom, 18k for the kitchen. We have 84k BTU for a 130m2 apartment gives an idea of what you need if you are doing it properly.
Wow, can I be your friend? I love AC and this is more BTU per sqm that I ever had. I was aiming at a single 20-30K BTU for the whole apartment. But maybe it actually makes sense to have several smaller ones, as the small ones can be very quiet.
In general though, as you said - modern ACs improved a lot in terms of noise, and some of them are so quiet they are barely noticeable (going as low as 20 Dbs).
If it gets loud I can also noise insulate it, but I do not plan for it to generate significant noise as I don't want to annoy the neighboors and it will annoy me as well.

BTW, with inverter units, the compressor no longer has the rigid on/off cycle, which both saves energy and avoids strong vibrations and noise.
As mentioned, AC units progressed a lot

Last edited by roegner; 12.11.2020 at 11:48. Reason: Merging consucutive posts
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