How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan – Functions, Tips and Repairs

Central cooling and heating is limited in Japan, so your best bet to comfortably regulate the temperature in your home is individual cooling and heating units placed in each room of the house. Here are our tips on How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan – Functions, Tips and Repairs,

Looking like something out of a sci-fi, the buttons on a standard remote for an air conditioner in Japan can be intimidating. Who knew one machine was capable of doing so many things? This guide will help you get the most of out of your air conditioner by explaining its functions and the buttons on the remote.

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How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan – Functions, Tips and Repairs

Basic Functions

How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan

COOLING: Press [冷房  / れいぼう / reibou] for cool air

WARMING: Press [暖房 / だんぼう / danbou] for warm air

AUTOMATIC: Press [自動  / じどう / jidou] to have the air conditioner automatically set temperature and fan speed based on room temperature.

STOP: Press [停止 / ていし / teishi] to stop all functions

TEMPERATURE: Press [温度 / おんど / ondo] to adjust the temperature.

  • May also be indicated by [温度↑  /  ondo↑ ] or [温度↓  /  ondo↓]

WIND: Press [風量  / ふうりょう /  fuuryou] to control the strength or weakness (on a scale from 1 to 5 or 6 stages); strength will be indicated by the appropriate amount of bars on the remote’s display panel.

SWING: Press [風向  / ふうこう /  fuukou] to adjust the angle of the wind.

On some models of air conditioning units, you can further adjust the direction of the swing:

  • [風向上下  /  ふうこうじょうげ /  fuukou jyouge] allows you to adjust the direction of the wind, up or down.
  • [風向左右 /  ふうこうさゆう / fuukou sayuu] allows you to adjust the direction of the wind, left or right.

AIR SWING: Press [自動風向  / じどうふうこう /  jidou fuukou] to activate air swing.

  • If no such button is present on your remote, air swing may be activated by repeatedly pressing [風向 / ふうこう / fuukou]

How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan

*** How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan***

Other Functions

TIMER ON: Press [入り /  いり /  iri; may also be タイマー  /  たいまー  /  taima-] to set the timer. It can be programmed to turn on between 1 to 12 hours later.

TIMER OFF: Press [切り /  きり /  kiri; may also be おやすみ / oyasumi] to set the timer.  It can be programmed to turn off between 1 to 12 hours later.

CANCEL: Press [取消  / とりけし /  torikeshi] to cancel timer or to start over.

FAN MODE: Press [送風  /  そうふう /  soukou] to use the air conditioner as a fan.

DEHUMIDIFIER: Press [除湿  /  じょしつ  /  joshitu or ドライ / どらい  / dorai] to reduce or even remove the moisture from the air before it is recirculated.

Useful modes

How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan

DAY OUT MODE: Press [おでかけ /  odekake] to activate this function which is useful for keeping room temperature at a constant temperature when out.

ENERGY EFFICIENT MODE: Press [省エネ /  しょうえね  /  shou ene] to reduce your energy consumption while unit is in use.

IONIZER MODE: Press [Ion] to releases positive and negative ions that reduce smells and gathers house dust, pollen and other small particles.

LAUNDRY MODE: Press [ランドリー /  らんどりー /  randori-] to activate this function that is useful for drying clothes indoor. Best when used when no one is home as temperature can not be controlled.

*** How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan***


  • Use the dehumidifying function [除湿  / じょしつ /  joshitu] during the rainy season and cooling function [冷房 /  れいぼう /  reibou] during the summer.
  • FAN MODE is useful when returning home on a hot day. Open windows and press [送風 /  そうふう /  soufuu] to let out hot air, then press [冷房  /  れいぼう /  reibou].
  • Pair your air conditioner with a fan to distribute cool air throughout the room and reduce energy consumption.

Point the fan upwards facing the air conditioner’s vent:





With the fan facing a wall, tilt the head upwards, leaving a space between the wall and fan:




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*** How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan***


The filter of air conditioner units should be cleaned every 3 months. Newer models tend to be self-cleaning and this function can be activated by using the remote.

CLEAN FILTER: Press [フィルター  掃除  /  ふぃるたーそうじ  /  firuta- souji] to clean the unit’s filters.

INTERNAL CLEANING: Press [内部クリーン /  ないぶくりーん  /  naibu kuri-n; may also be 内部清浄  /  ないぶせいじょう  /  naibu seijou] to clean the unit.

Nevertheless, it is best to manually clean the unit to prevent the buildup of mold, dust, and bacteria. In particular, if you notice an unusual smell coming from your unit, do not hesitate to clean your air conditioner or to contact a repairman as this smell can indicate a buildup of mold.

How to clean your air conditioner

Before cleaning, be sure to have on gloves and a face mask and goggles if available. You will also want a vacuum cleaner and additional plastic bags on standby. Remove furniture or place a tarp over large items. Secure a plastic bag underneath air conditioner unit to catch dust. Open windows as well to let clean air circulate. Turn off power, unplug unit (or turn off breaker is there is no plug), and open the cover. To clean the unit, you may use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment, then very gently remove filter.

Place filter inside a plastic bag and use the vacuum cleaner to remove excess dust off filter. When done, use a shower head or hose, to thoroughly clean filter, making sure to spray water on the exterior of the filter. Let air dry, preferably for 24 hours or until completely dry. Once filter is completely dry, insert into unit. Using a damp filter can result in the buildup of mold.

Lastly, you’ll want to clean the outside of the unit by gently wiping with a damp cloth.


*** How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan***


If your unit is still under warranty, contact the manufacturer directly as repairs may be covered by the warranty.

Dakin   0120-330-696

Call 24 hrs, 7 days a week.

Mitsubishi 0120-139-365

Monday – Friday 9:00 – 19:00; Sat. Sun. & National Holidays: 9:00 – 17:00.

Panasonic 0120-878-554

Monday – Friday 9:00 – 19:00; Sat. Sun. & National holidays: 9:00 – 17:30.

Sharp  0120-02-4649

Monday – Saturday 9:00 – 20:00; Sunday & National Holidays:  9:00 – 17:00.

Rental properties: Contact your landlord or residential property management. You may not be liable for repair fees if damages were not cause by your negligence. Please see Article 8 of the Rental Housing Contract set by the Ministry of Land, Interior, and Transportation for additional details.


How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan


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How to Use an Air Conditioner in Japan

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