Split vs Ducted Air Conditioning: Which Is Best?

Blog / Residential Air Conditioner System

Do you want to invest in an air conditioner, but uncertain whether to opt for a split or ducted air conditioning unit?

When deciding whether a split or ducted air conditioning unit is for you, you have to consider your space, budget for running costs, installation, as well as general requirements from your air conditioner such as efficiency and long-term value.

When the hot Australian weather is getting to you, and you’re feeling overwhelmed by these two options, don’t fret, as we’ll break down the pros and cons so that you can make your choice with confidence and no regrets.

The Difference Between Ducted and Split Air Conditioning

What is Ducted Air Conditioning?

The ducted air conditioning unit works through – you guessed it – a ducted system. It can cool down an entire home, so it’s ideal for a bigger space with various rooms. The main/central system is called the compressor/condensing unit and is installed out of sight in the ceiling.

The air is cooled and carried to all the other rooms via the ducts. You can control each room’s temperature individually through a thermostat. This is referred to as ‘zoning’ and will be a real peacemaker in areas such as offices or homes where everyone has different temperature preferences or requirements.

This is a highly effective and more adjustable way to cool down your space. However, you do need a professional to come and install it for you.

Pros of a Ducted Air Conditioning Unit

– It offers better control flexibility with both cooling and heating from the same unit.

– Perfect for cooling larger buildings with different rooms, such as bigger homes, shopping units, open-plan offices, etc.

– Ideal if you want different temperatures in each room of the space you are cooling (zoning).

– Discreet because you install it in one room’s ceiling or sometimes in the wall.

– Once you’ve set the temperatures to each room’s desire, you can leave it running and it will always remain on that temperature. You can even set up timers so that the air conditioners will switch on and off at certain times – perfect for saving electricity, for example, in an office where there is no one throughout the night.

– It’s silent, so there will be no distractions in the workplace or sleep disturbance at home.

– Adds to the resell value of your building in the long run.

– More energy efficient if you are cooling more than three rooms.

Cons of a Ducted Air Conditioning Unit

– It can be a more expensive option if you have a small space or only need to cool down one room. If you have various rooms to cool, it will also increase per area you want to include to the system.

– Trickier to install than a split air conditioning system. Especially when you have a smaller space because you need enough room for all the air conditioning parts.

– If your air conditioner is not zoned, it can be inefficient as you will have to pay for cooling the entire building instead of just the room you want to cool down at that moment.

– It can be more expensive as you have to repair the whole system if something breaks, and it will affect all rooms that run through this central room.

What is Split Air Conditioning Unit?

It’s all in the name. A split air conditioning unit is split into two parts – one installed inside on the wall of the room you want to cool, and the other outside your home.

Insulated refrigerant lines connect the outdoor or condenser unit to the indoor or evaporator unit. Generally, you can hook up around four of the indoor units per one outdoor unit.

It’s always advisable to get a professional to do the installation to optimise its efficiency and choose the right locations to install the two units.

Pros of a Split Air Conditioning Unit

– It is a very efficient energy solution because its long-term running costs are more affordable than most air conditioning units.

– Blending into the room. Due to modern-day designs, you don’t have to make way for bulky, unsightly systems. The split air conditioning unit is usually installed high up the wall, and these days are sleek and modern designs.

– It is more versatile and affordable to install as it does not need large holes in the walls or installation in the ceiling as with a ducted air conditioning unit.

– It is cheaper to repair as you only need to fix the one broken system.

Cons of a Split Air Conditioning Unit

– Although it will be whisper quiet inside, the outdoor unit of your split air conditioning unit can be noisy. You should always consider where you place so that you are not disturbing neighbours.

– It can cool only one room instead of the duct air conditioning unit that can cool a large space with different rooms.

– Costly to install. Although it is more expensive to install than the ducted air conditioning unit, it makes up for its initial fees by being way more energy efficient in the long run.

Let’s Help You Make the Decision Even Easier for You

Whether you are in the market for a new air conditioning unit – be it ducted or split air, you need to repair your current air conditioner, or you want some maintenance done, contact us. With our years of experience in the industry, we can help weigh up the pros and cons to make your choice easier or optimise your existing unit’s performance so that you can stay cool and collected throughout the year.

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