A window unit air conditioner can be a great solution for staying cool when you don't have central air conditioning. There are some important safety tips for using these high powered units that everyone should know about.
Some smaller window air conditioners come with a power cord that can be plugged into a regular outlet. This makes life convenient, but be careful that the outlet you choose and the circuit it runs on isn't powering a lot of other stuff. An air conditioning unit should have its own dedicated plug, because it uses a lot of electricity, and you don't want to overburden the circuit and cause a short or a fire. Some units require a special outlet, so be sure to check these things out before you try to start using your window unit.
Window air conditioners were not designed to run off an extension cord or power strip. The heavy flow of electricity being pulled by the unit can get very hot if it has to travel over a distance, and can melt an extension cord and cause a very dangerous electrical fire. And the longer the extension cord is, the more likely it is you'll cause a fire.
It may sound obvious, but take precautions to be sure that no children or pets drink the water that drips out of the back of a window air conditioner. This is natural evaporation and the presence of the water is normal, but it is toxic from running through chemicals inside the air conditioner and can be very unhealthy to anyone who ingests it, human or animal.
When you install a window air conditioner in your window, be sure it sits at a slight tilt so the naturally dripping water coming from the back can easily escape.
You should never install or use a window air conditioner so the cold air blows directly into your face for an extended period of time. There may be some chemical residue in the air blowing out of the unit, and it is not safe to inhale this air directly for long periods. It's not dangerous as long as you let it blow naturally into the room, but never directly onto your face for long periods.
Enjoy your cool room and all the benefits of a window air conditioner safely!
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