Applications for portable air conditioning

At our warehouse in Stockwell, London and in Southampton we stock a wide range of air conditioning units for hire.

The choice of the right units for you application is important and you can call us on 0800 1694768 to talk through your situation and get advice on our recommended solution. Below are some common installation arrangements for your guidance. In addition to offering a solution which will provide effective cooling we also take into account noise levels, appearance and convenience in use.

We rely on over 10 years experience in making our recommendations and if we think it necessary we will visit and survey at no cost to you. If we have not visited previously then at time of delivery and set-up we will review our solution and discuss any changes we wish to advise.


1. Rooms with opening windows which need to be locked at night

Monobloc a/c unit vented to window

The most common means of temporary air conditioning for offices and domestic applications.

It is simple to set up and the window can be closed and locked at night by withdrawing the monobloc air conditioner exhaust tube. The correct choice of exhaust hose end fitting will allow the window to be closed to leave only a 70mm gap and will look neater than having the pipe hang out of the window.

A single pipe installation as shown has the advantage of increasing fresh air ventilation but in very hot weather (28 deg c plus) it has the disadvantage of bringing hot ambient air into the room to replace the exhaust air and this limits the lowest temperature which can be achieved and increases the air conditioning load. (See our technical analysis page)



2. Rooms with windows which can be left open a little or which can be secured nearly closed at night

office or domestic split A/C unit application

Where it is possible to leave the air conditioning condenser positioned outside, a split air conditioner can be used. This is also possible where a small hole 60mm diameter can be cut in the window or drilled through the wall. The connection between the indoor unit and the outside condenser can split and passed through the hole before re-connection.

Condensate from the air conditioner inside will normally be discharged to the condenser unit so some dripping may well occur which needs to be taken into account. If this is the only obstacle to using a split unit and this type of air conditioner is preferred, then arrangements can be made for the condensate to be discharged elsewhere.

A split unit operates in the same way as an installed system in that the air in the room is re-circulated through the indoor unit and the amount of hot outside air entering the room can be controlled. . A split unit of the same cooling output as a monobloc unit will therefore be more effective in cooling the room, particularly in hotter weather.


3. Small server rooms within air conditioned offices

Server room A/C with heat to adjacent room

For small server or comms rooms, without a window, requiring cooling, this arrangement with a PM38Q monobloc air condtioner with exhaust hose long enough to reach the ceiling and direct the air across to the adjacent room, is often appropriate. Clearly it is best if the heat from the server room can be discharged directly outside, however, if the main office is air conditioned then it can be acceptable to rely on the office air conditioning to take that heat away. After all, before using any cooling, the server heat would have been contributing to the temperature of the surrounding area, anyway. An air conditioner installed as shown will take that heat away from the server room in a more positive way and allow the temperature of the servers to be controlled.

It is important to check that the ceiling void above the server room is open to adjacent areas and that the hot air is ducted away from the server room area so that it can escape, otherwise overheating of the servers will continue.

Where no ceiling void is available, it may be necessary to discharge to heat directly into the adjacent office or use a duct with in line fan (See item 13 below) to take the heat away from the area.


4. Larger purpose built server rooms requiring cooling during planned maintenance or emergency breakdown.

Server room with high cooling load

Where the area to be cooled is within the core of the building and a significant amount of heat needs to be dissipated, such as a larger server/machine room laboratory or production area, a water cooled split air conditioner can be used.

The heat is transferred from the indoor unit to the outdoor unit by circulating water which means that the connecting hosing can be up to 35 mt long. This allows the heat from the room to be taken to a convenient outdoor location. At up to 7.3KW these are powerful air conditioning units and as they are split units any number can be used in the same area without affecting ventilation rates, to meet high cooling loads.


5. Air conditioning failure in sealed buildings.

Office cooling using installed ventilation system for extracting heat

In buildings with integrated air conditioning and ventilation systems it is common for the windows to be of a design which cannot be opened. On failure of the installed A/C system a serious overheating of the building can follow.

The use of monobloc units discharging their heat into the installed ventilation system to expell the heat is often the only practical option without removing windows. It is important that the ventilation system is kept running at all times particularly where the temporary system is relied upon the cool computer systems.

The temptation to use evaporative cooling should be resisted as the limited ventilation will not cope in controlling the increased humidity from evaporative coolers and working conditions will quickly deteriorate. (See our technical analysis page.)


6. Marquees and outdoor locations

Marquee with evaporative cooling

The high level of ventilation in this type of structure and in open outdoor locations make the use of air conditioners problematic (unless used as spot coolers) and the better solution may well be evaporative coolers.

A high volume of fresh air passing through the area is needed to prevent a build up of humidity which results in uncomfortable conditions and has a serious detrimental effect on the performance of the units.

High output units are available but these are normally only suitable where the significant fan noise is not a problem. Smaller units with less powerful fans and shorter air throw are quieter.


7. Basement cooling

Cooling a basement with no windows or doors to outside

Basement areas with people working in them tend to become over heated in summer through heat from computers, lighting and other electrical loads. Where server cabinets are also installed heat builds up 24 hrs/day.

Heat needs to be taken outside rather than to adjacent areas, so that it does not find it's way back to the basement. The distance to outside is often too far for refrigerant lines to reach and a water cooled air conditioning unitis often the best solution. The distance between the indoor unit and the outdoor unit can be as much as 35mt and the interconnecting pipework is relatively small at 50mm diameter and is very flexible.

Evaporative cooling would not be effective as the humidity would quickly rise to an uncomfortable level and evaporation would cease making the cooler no more than a fan in a very humid room.


8. Server room A/C breakdown emergency or A/C off over night

Emergency cooling of a server room without windows

Where a short term solution is required for emergency cooling of a room without windows such as an internal server room, it may be acceptable to simply discharge the heat into the adjacent room with a monobloc unit, via the door. This will allow the server temperatures to be controlled and the total amount of heat entering the adjacent office will not be significantly more than exists before cooling is installed as the heat from the servers/UPS etc will make it's way into the office anyway.

Where this heat needs to be better dispersed we can offer other alternatives. See below.


9. Spot cooling in large warehouse & factory areas with monobloc units

Spot cooling in warehouse and factory areas

In warehouse and workshop locations where the large floor area and high roof along with machine and other gains, make it impractical to cool the whole area, it may be more appropriate to provide operatives with local spot cooling.

A cool air flow to the workstation from an industrial monobloc air conditioner will allow relief from high temperatures. Where staff are necessarily more mobile the spot cooling can provide respite areas for relief from the heat.

The heat from the spot coolers is discharged to high level in the building where it can be vented either by natural ventilatin or by roof extract fans. Evaporative cooling may also be a viable solution in some areas. See below.


10. Split unit neater installation for regular use

Split unit air conditioner installed with hole cut in window

Where cooling is needed all year round or where it is needed every summer, a neater and more convenient installation of a split unit can be achieved by either drilling through the wall or having a hole cut in the window glass. With the air conditioning condenser hung on the wall immediately outsdie the hole (or just below the window) a longer length of the connecting hose can be inside the room, allowing greater flexibility of location of the indoor unit.

Installed in this way the temporary unit will operate in the same way as an installed unit, recirculating the air in the room through the A/C unit for maximum cooling effect, even in the hottest weather.


11. Exhibition stand cooling with A/C unit outside stand

Exhibition stand with A/C outside stand

Exhibitin stands within a large hall can become uncomfortably hot due to lighting and AV equipment loads. Obviously this can deter stand visitors.

Where space is limited within the stand cool air can be piped into the stand via a grill. This arrangement also keeps any noise from the air conditioner outside the stand and does not compromise the appearance. Either lower powered office type units or more powerful industral units with ducted discharge nozzles can be used.

Where space to locate the unit has been a problem we have installed the A/C on top of the stand.


12. Exhibition stand cooling

Monobloc unit installed inside an exibition stand

Limited space around the stand may mean that the A/C unit has to be installed within the stand itself. With a little planning is can be convenient and unobtusive.

The monobloc unit exhaust can be taken out though the stand wall or up through the stand ceiling. Heat is simply dissipated into the exhibition hall where it is vented at high level.


13. Office cooling units with long exhaust requirement

Discharging hot exhaust air over longer distances

Offices requiring quiet cooling units but which need very long exhaust pipes pose a particular problem. The maximum exhaust length on any office/domestic type of unit is 3.2mt on the model PM38 which we stock. This is suitalbe to exhaust to a 3mt high ceiling but as with any monobloc air conditioner, if an exhaust is used which is longer than the maximum designed for, the unit performance will be compromised, particularly in hotter weather when maximum performance is needed.

We can use a fan assisted duct to carry the hot exhaust air longer distances. A 200mm diameter duct with in-line fan can be up to 15mt long and handle the exhaust air from 2 model PM38 units.


14. Portacabin comfort cooling

Cooling and improving ventiatin in a portacabin

Temporary or more permanent accommodation in portacabins can present a serious overheating problem in summer through direct solar gains through poorly insulated roof and walls. The lack of an adequate ventilation system further agravates the problem.

The monobloc air conditionerexhaust can be taken out though the portacabin wall or to a window. The additional ventilation generated by the monobloc air conditioning unit is helpful in maintaining air quality inside the portacabin but additional cooling per sq mt of floor area is adviseable to meet the heavy cooling load in the height of summer. Care needs to be taken in fixing a grill over any hole cut in the wall to ensure that it does not cause an obstruction to the air flow. Where the exhaust is taken to a hole cut in the wall adequate ventilation into the portacabin is needed to ensure that the exhaust air flow is not restricted. Where a window is used for exhausting the unit, the free area of window opening is normally adequate ventilation.


In addition to free advice on the best air conditioning to hire, the appropriate dehumidifiers for building drying and a range of heaters for hire, we provide same day delivery, setting up of equipment and flexible hire terms to accommodate your changing requirements. Where your circumstances change unexpectedly during the hire we can be flexible and re-visit the application.


Portable air conditioning hire, by Aircon Hire, the air conditioner hire specialists - serving London and South East England.

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