What Does it Cost to Run a 5000 BTU Air Conditioner?
Air conditioner capacity is often described in British thermal units instead of amperage or wattage. To determine the cost to run a 5,000Btu air conditioner, however, you'll have to know the amperage rating. In turn, you can convert that number to wattage. Once you know the wattage, you can find out the cost to run the air conditioner for an hour, a day, a week, a month or a year.

Locate the amperage of your 5,000Btu air conditioner. There will generally be a tag on the bottom or inside the filter panel with the specifications that you need. Most 5,000Btu air conditioning units are rated at around 5 amperes.

Calculate the wattage from the amperes. For example, multiply the 5amp figure by how many volts there are at the outlet. In most cases this will be 110. Therefore, 5 x 110 = 550 watts. This figure will allow you to calculate your kilowatthours.

Find out what you are paying for each kilowatthour from your local electric company. The national average is approximately 12 cents.

Determine how much the air conditioner would cost to run over a 24hour period. Use the basic formula of watts x hours of use ÷ 1,000 x cost per kilowatthour = cost of operation. (Dividing by 1,000 changes watthours to kilowatthours.) For example, in this case the mathematical formula looks like this: 550 x 24 ÷ 1,000 x $0.12. The cost to run a 5amp, 5,000Btu air conditioner over a 24hour period is about $1.60.

Divide the cost per day by how many hours in a day to get an hourly cost amount. For example, $1.60 divided by 24. The answer shows that it will cost 6 cents to run every hour.

Multiply the per day cost, $1.60, by seven days to get a weekly cost. In this instance it will cost $11.20 per week to run continuously. Multiply the weekly amount by how many weeks in a month (4) to get a monthly cost. In this case, the cost per month will be approximately $45. A yearly cost can be determined by multiplying the cost per week, $11.20, by how many weeks in a year, 52. The total approximate yearly amount to run a 5,000Btu air conditioner continuously will be about $585.
Tip
The cost to operate the unit will vary from region to region. In the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, the kilowatthour cost is about 63 percent greater than the national average, so it would cost about $950 annually to run a 5,000Btu air conditioner.
References
Writer Bio
Dale Yalanovsky has been writing professionally since 1978. He has been published in "Woman's Day," "New Home Journal" and on many doityourself websites. He specializes in doityourself projects, household and auto maintenance and property management. Yalanovsky also writes a bimonthly column that provides home improvement advice.