Korea 101 for expats

How to use your AC in Korea

Okay, the time has come. Korea’s summer. Trust me, summer in Korea can be stressful if it is your first time experiencing it. It is very hot, humid, and sweating. Studios, especially single households, has fewer windows, and they are even small. And if you are living in a studio, you have a rare chance to feel the breeze inside your room. So, you now have an air-conditioner, congrats! 

 

How can you use AC well effectively? 

Many people, including me, hesitate to turn on the AC due to its expensive electricity fees. What are the ways to use AC effectively?

1. Learn Hidden functions of AC

  1. Cooling (냉방, 파워냉방) – The fundamental function of AC. Makes your room cool.
  2. Dehumidifying (건조) – The function that you might have never seen it. Most ACs in Korea has a function of dehumidifying. Makes your skin dry and smooth.
  3. Fan (바람, 송풍) – The most hidden function of Korean AC. If you don’t want to get a cold with too much air conditioning, but still want to cool down, this is it. The breeze is not air-conditioned, but just fan-based breeze. But the main reason for this function is to dry the inner part of an AC as a temperature difference between interior and exterior parts of AC gives humidity to AC. Basically, you can think of this function for cleaning your AC and, at the same time, enjoying the summer breeze inside your room.

You can test your AC vocabulary at this link. 

AC Remote Controller
@Reddit 

2. Place your outdoor unit of AC in a cooler area

Unlike those are in the States, most ACs in Korea come along with an outdoor unit(실외기).  An outdoor unit of AC must be placed in shaded areas so that it won’t get too hot. If the temperature of an outdoor unit increases, you will have to pay a lot of electricity fees in the following month.

3. Clean your AC filter

Most people do not really care about cleaning the AC filters(필터). (Some people do, when they use it for the first time in a year.) If you clean the filter every two weeks, you can save about 5% of your fee according to a news article. Check out the video to learn how to clean it quick.

4. AC + Fans = Air Cooler! 

If you are too worried about expensive electronic fees, you can also bring a fan to use with AC. It can help keep cool air circulating throughout your room. If you don’t have fans, no worries, just let the wind blow toward the ceiling by adjusting the direction of wind deflectors (바람문). 

@LGe, Flickr

5. Use Window blinds

You can control the amount of sunshine as you wish if you use window blinds! According to an article published by Korean Government, you can increase the cooling effect by 15% by blocking direct sunlight with curtains(커텐) and blinds(블라인드) while the AC is working. The price range is pretty wide. You can buy at online (link).

창문 블라인드, Window blinds

 

 

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