The window unit is one of the most popular AC systems in the country for a number of reasons such as, being the most affordable units, and the easiest to install. But they usually are not the best choice in terms of efficiency, convenience, and versatility. They are usually much louder than their ductless air conditioner counterpart. They must be positioned in a window which means less natural light and view of outside. Owners of a window unit also assume a security risk with a window air conditioner. Removal of an air conditioning unit could provide an easy unwanted entry into your home.
The ductless mini-split system
The ductless mini-split system has a number of advantages:
Great for renovation work. Because it's a ductless system, the air handler simply gets mounted in where it's appropriate and is connected by a line set to the outside unit.
Cost efficiency does not mean that they are not efficient. They have models with SEER ratings between 18 and 26. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio which measures how efficient your AC units are. Higher SEER ratings will use less energy and save homeowners money in the long term. The Department of Energy offers online energy efficiency calculators to help homeowners predict how much money they’ll save on energy costs with equipment carrying different SEER ratings.
Ductless mini-split systems are very quiet and very attractive looking when compared to the loud and unaesthetic window units.
Ductless Systems can be single zone or multi zone. Single zone can provide cooling for one room, while multi zone systems can provide air conditioning from 2-9 rooms.
Some customers who already have central air choose to install a ductless mini-split air conditioner as well in order to use less energy while getting comparable results. And for anyone who wants to skip dealing with the duct work central A/C installation requires, it’s the obvious choice.
Things to consider
If you want a ductless air conditioner that’s powerful enough to cool a large room, or want a multi-zone unit that can handle multiple rooms, expect to pay closer to that high end of the price range. If you want one that also comes with a heat pump for the winter, that will add to the cost as well. Your energy costs with a mini-split air conditioner will be lower than with any other type of air conditioner providing the same amount of cooling. One of the benefits of zones is that you can control each one distinctly. A quad zone air conditioning unit, for example, can be set to four different temperatures based on the preferences of people in each of the four rooms. The same goes for dual zone and triple zone units.Having multiple zones can help you eliminate a lot of wasted energy by allowing you to customize the temperature of different rooms. Or you can turn the A/C off entirely in any room that’s not currently in use. This cooling strategy will not only save you money, but is something that you are unable to do with central air conditioners.