May 13, 2024
The Pros And Cons of Different Types of AC Units

Whether you need to replace your home’s existing cooling system or are looking for your very first one, it can be overwhelming to narrow down your options. From central air conditioning systems to heat pumps, each one comes with its own pros and cons. By learning about each one, you will be better informed when deciding what unit to purchase.

Central Air Conditioning

One of the most popular home cooling systems is central air conditioning. This system relies on already-established ductwork to circulate air throughout your home. It consists of two main units, which are the indoor air handler and the outdoor condenser unit. Unless you have a zoned system, the temperature is going to be controlled by one central thermostat.

Centralized air conditioning systems are a great option for homeowners who already have ductwork installed for their furnaces. While it is not the most efficient cooling system option on the market today, it’s a fairly affordable one for the average homeowner. You’ll need to have an HVAC technician install the system for you. However, you can expect it to last 10 or more years.

Ductless Mini-Splits

Another cooling option that is becoming quite popular these days is the ductless mini-split heat pump. Instead of relying on ductwork to circulate air, this type of system uses a series of indoor air handlers connected to a single outdoor unit. Air is pulled into the unit, cooled, and expelled back out into the room during its whisper-quiet operation.

With a ductless mini-split system, there’s absolutely no ducting required. The air handles are attached to the outdoor condenser unit via a conduit that runs through a small hole at the back of the unit. This makes the ductless mini-split cooling system ideal for homes where there is no ducting and for home additions where it would be costly to run more ducting.

Each air handler comes with its own remote, meaning you can set each unit at a different temperature. This gives you the benefits of a zoned system. For instance, family members can control the temperature in their room. In addition, you can turn off the cooling in a space that is used sparingly, like a guest room, to save on cooling costs.

One of the biggest attractions of ductless mini-split units is that they are more energy efficient than a traditional centralized air conditioning system. This is because they do not lose any cold air through air gaps in ducting like a centralized cooling unit will. However, one drawback of ductless mini-split systems is that they require space in each room to mount the unit. Traditionally, units were only mounted on exterior walls. However, they can now be mounted on the floor or ceiling if the space allows.

Window Air Conditioners

Another option for those who do not want to spend a lot of money installing a whole-home system is a window air conditioner. As its name suggests, this is an individual unit placed in a window. This type of unit requires a sizable window, and some require a high-voltage plug to supply power. Window air conditioners are easy for the average homeowner to install and fairly affordable to purchase.

While window units can help cool a single room, there are better options for cooling an entire home. Instead, you would need to install multiple window air conditioners, which can be costly and cause power issues. These units are not very aesthetically pleasing, and you’ll have to worry about storing them in a safe location throughout the year’s colder months.

Choosing the Right AC Unit for Your Home

Once you narrow down your cooling options, evaluating which system will work best in your home and making a final decision can be challenging. If your budget is minimal and you are just looking to cool some of the rooms in your home, then purchasing a couple of window units may be the best option for now until you can invest more funds in a whole home system.

If you already have a heating system that utilizes ducting, it will be most cost-effective to simply install a centralized air conditioning unit that relies on your existing forced air system. However, if you don’t have ducting installed, ductless mini-split units can be a great alternative solution to cooling your home.

Reliable AC Service

Simmons Heating & Cooling provides reliable cooling services for the Chesapeake, VA community. Our technicians can also assist with all of your heating, generator, ductless mini-split, heat pump, indoor air quality, ductwork, and water heater needs. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced team members.

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