Interior Design & Renovation Articles

The Coolest Ways to Hide Your Aircon at Home

21 Feb 2017 by Juliet Huang |

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In this hot tropical weather, it is near-impossible not to have an air conditioning unit installed in the apartment. But how best to box up the aircon unit so that it doesn’t look out of place? Many home-owners now opt to install mini split air conditioners in each room so that the temperature can be individually controlled. With an air con unit that cannot be painted over, the need to incorporate the air con into the unique decors of different rooms can be challenging. Here are some ideas to get you started on how to camouflage your air-con unit without breaking a sweat!

1. Recessed into a false ceiling

Many homeowners build false ceilings to compartmentalise areas of their house, and the air con unit can also be strategically placed to appear as part of the false ceiling as well. The air can also circulate faster as it is at a lower point to the floor.

recessed-into-a-false-ceiling

Notice how the aircon is barely visible when placed against the false ceiling.
The Luxurie Compassvale Road by Ace Space Design

Nick Pang from Ace Space Design advises that for public housing, a false ceiling or a light box can be used to hide the air con piping. He also suggests that in order not to make the air con piping too visible, it’s possible to run all the piping into the bedroom so that it will not be seen in the living room.

The only drawback is that your apartment ceiling may not have the space it needs to build a false ceiling. Not to worry, a false beam also works wonders, as this concept by Posh Living shows:

project-at-waterway-brooks-by-posh-livng

A beam takes up less space, and your air unit can be recessed to appear as part of the beam.
Project at Waterway Brooks by Posh Living

If you live in a landed housing, and do not fancy the idea of lowering your ceiling, hacking the wall to hide your water pipes and gas pipes is another method that your interior designer may suggest to you.

2. Above a window

If false beams and ceilings make you feel claustrophobic, then consider placing the air con unit above a window. It will optimally use the space between the window and the ceiling. If you are worried that it will be a waste of cool air as the air will just flow out of the window, then use this ingenious design tip from In2space Design Limited. The artificial windows that partition the house lends an air of expansive space to the house, while keeping the living room cool.

above-a-window

A window that opens up to another room? Ingenious.
HBO BTO Edgefield Plains by In2space design and solutions

Henry Yeo from In2space also pointed out that air-conditioner units have adjustable fronts which be controlled to deflect airflow horizontally and inwards into your room, thus minimising wastage from cool air going outwards. There is also the option of buying a window unit air-conditioner. These units can be removed when you do not require them anymore, and easily installed above the window.

3. Over your bed

There are some of us who cannot sleep without the air-con on, and so placing the unit over your bed gives the room the much-needed Arctic temperatures you need. But to wake up in the middle of the night freezing and then to fumble for the control device is too fussy – so make like these clever designers and place it strategically in a diagonal position over your bed.

Vivi Law from Spacious Planners recommends putting the air-con in a spot across from your bed, rather than overhead as some people have trouble sleeping knowing that the unit is right above them. She also reminds homeowners that air con units require regular maintenance, and so while it can be done, it will be troublesome as you have to shift your bed when the servicing crew arrives.

over-your-bed

This aircon unit complements the black and white scheme of the room here.
Condominium 51 the tropic by Spacious Planners Pte Ltd

That way, you experience cool temperatures, and yet you are not in the line of cold air directly. You would probably have heard this from your grandmother – not to aim cold air at yourself directly or you will fall sick!

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4. Above the doorway

If all else fails, use the space above the doorway.

above-the-doorway

This AC unit cools the entire home evenly.
HDB 5 room flat Blk 440 Fernvale Lane by Atelier Interior Pte Ltd

In fact, that could be the best way to maximise your wall space. As doorways often reach to the maximum height in the room, placing the air con unit from the highest point also ensures that the cold air can reach to all parts of the room. It also saves wall space to be decorated, or hacked, depending on your preference as the photo above shows.

5. Hiding atop a custom designed shelf or cabinet

A less popular option, some homeowners opt to hide their aircon unit above custom make shelves or cabinets. This can be a good way to make use of space, especially when shoe cabinets reach from floor to ceiling, or bookcases need to end at the ceiling.

hiding-atop-a-custom-designed-shelf-or-cabinet

Play “Where’s Wally” with this AC unit, tastefully camouflaged atop the white cabinet.
Euphony Garden by U-home design

It does look very attractive when you consider that the alignment of the shelves ascending to the top takes the eye away from the air con. However, do keep in mind that in our warm tropical weather, it can get dusty easily, and it can be a hassle to try and reach below the air con unit.

With all these suggestions, it is no longer an excuse to let that air con unit sit unattractively and stick out like a sore thumb in your house now! Find the coolest way to hide your air con unit, and you’ll be on your way to air con Nirvana in no time.

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