Sunday, 14 October 2018

IGENIX IG9901 3 in 1 Portable Air Conditioner

9000BTU, 2000 W
This review is specifically in relation to using this unit in a Static/Mobile Home
Trying to use one of these in a Mobile Home in a heatwave in the UK I guess was always going to be a bit of a tall order. And so it turned out. A dwelling with walls as thin as a fag paper just allows the heat of direct sun straight through. This poor thing is working its socks off and doesn't stand a chance. It might just get things down from 29 degrees to 27, with a trailing wind! The strategy to employ under these circumstances is to just place your body in the flow of the cold air, as near as possible. It's a bit like sitting in front of a fridge with an open door, only better!

I place it in Halfway House however, because it does have a good use. When the sun is not beating down directly and there's cloud cover, but it's still warm and muggy outside, it does very reasonably well. The temperature can be reduced from, say, 26 to 20 and make things much more tolerable. Likewise, when the sun goes down and there's a horribly sticky hot night to endure, the unit will reduce things down along the same lines. It can be set to go down to 15 degrees.

You do have to, of course, seal the room as much as possible to get best results. Piping out the hot air is a challenge. I got a kit for £20 from AmazonUK (https://goo.gl/hHgJyo) which does a reasonable job utilising Velcro and a zipped opening for the exhaust tube. You can't completely seal it - and you do have to watch out for moths finding their way past the defences after dark(!) but it's not too bad. This kit was also suitable to use with a French Window.

You can wheel it around to other locations, but of course you do then have to make new arrangements for piping the hot air out somewhere else. I have been able to keep the concertina'd hose as short as possible by the French Window, but it can be pulled out/shaped to about 6ft. Clearly, the longer it is and the less compressed the bellows of the concertina are, the more heat will escape into the room. There are two drain holes at the back to let out any water that gathers inside. I've had two of these units over the years and never have I had to do that. I think it's supposed to do itself, like a fridge, so they're only for emergency.

The unit has got a dehumidifier function, simple fan and the Air Conditioning. It has a simple timer, so if it's on, you can set it to turn off in a number of hours, or if it's off you can set it to turn on in a number of hours. You can also set it into sleep mode where it reduces the output over six hours in steps then goes off. If you just use the fan/dehumidifier you don't need to vent it of course. The fan is as strong as you might expect from the size of the unit when not in AC mode. Nothing like the power of my Gym Fan (reviewed at https://goo.gl/YT2rxm). You can control the power by High/Med/Low and the direction of the flow by two sets of louvres, which can also be set to oscillate. Seems to work well.

For £40 more you can get an Alexa/Wifi version, which means you can hook it up to your smart devices and use voice commands or control it remotely with an app. This does presume that you have wifi, I guess! Ha! It's quite noisy, I guess, but when you're melting it really doesn't matter! Yes, I have to turn up the TV but it's a good payoff. Personally, I can sleep with it on, even on the High setting, but others might not.

It's not cheap at £320 from AmazonUK (https://goo.gl/nK1gmA) but AC is not cheap, it seems. It does something that nothing else much does. Fans and other cooling aids are a help within limits of temperature, but there comes a point when there's only one solution. You can pay an awful lot more, of course, or have specialist units built into walls, but it's difficult in a mobile home. On balance, even though it was the price of a mid-range mobile phone, I think it was worth it. Even if in the UK it's only needed for a couple of spells in a year. When they come, it's nice to know that I won't melt!

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