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Are you in the market for a new air conditioning solution for your home? In our advancing technological age, it’s never been more affordable to get all the benefits of staying cool, warm cosy and fuzzy all year round. It’s good for your health, your productivity, your happiness, your sleep – pretty much everything! But one of the first questions you’ll run into very early on as you start your browsing is perhaps the most fundamental: Ducted or split system air conditioning?

Ducted VS split system: The definitions

First up, let’s get the definitions out of the way. Ducted (or central) air conditioning is the kind where air is delivered from a central unit directly to the various rooms of your property by a system of ducts and vents. A split system air conditioning, on the other hand, is one that is ‘split’ into two distinct parts – the unit inside that you point the remote control at so that it blows the desired air onto you, and another unit that is usually located outside the property. The outdoor unit’s basic role is to get rid of the heat generated by the inside unit.

Unfortunately, the definition alone is almost certainly not enough for you to decide which side of the ducted air conditioning vs split system debate you will fall. That’s because it can seem that the only question you need to answer is ‘do I want air blowing into every room (ducted) or from a single place only (split system)?’.

So what other factors will help settle the split system vs ducted question?:

1. Installation

It’s no surprise that installing the duct/vent network for a ducted system is more complex – and costly. You’ll be looking at several thousand dollars more for the total purchase and installation compared with a typical split system setup.

2. Cost

With conditioned air needing to blow into multiple rooms rather than just one, ducted system running costs are also higher. However, modern ducted system advances in technology give you control over zoning features, allowing you to customise how and where that air blows. In some cases, this can make ducted actually more efficient than a split system.

3. Effectiveness

For a single, reasonably-sized room, a split system can make it either very toasty or shorts-and-t-shirt cool. Larger rooms, however, will require a larger, more powerful, more expensive system, and if you’re looking for a stable consistent temperature throughout a larger space, a ducted system might make a lot more sense.

Also important to note is that while split systems both heat and cool, the same is also true of reverse cycle ducted systems. The exception is evaporative ducted systems, which only cool your home.

4. Noise

As technology races on at an incredible rate, noise is becoming a less pressing concern all round. But while modern split systems really can be whisper quiet, sleeping in a room with ducted air being pumped in is basically silent.

5. Aesthetics

From inside the home, a room with an air conditioning duct looks clean and modern. However, the same aesthetic qualities are also being achieved with a slick, trendy split system unit – although paired with a normally less attractive outdoor unit. Ducted systems, however, are also complete with a bulky outdoor unit – normally on the roof.

6. Suitability

In some cases, with some properties, there simply isn’t the roof space to consider a ducted system. Two-storey homes can also be problematic, with the solution often being a ducted system upstairs and a split system or two downstairs. Just about any property, meanwhile, will be suitable for split systems.

7. Longevity

The typical ducted system lifespan is a little longer than a typical split system warranty – but both will give you plenty of value for money over many years. The key is following all the proper air conditioning maintenance and air conditioning servicing requirements.

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Ducted VS split system: The verdict

So: ducted or split system aircon? If you’re finding it hard to choose what’s right for you, let’s take two imaginary air conditioning customers: Timmy and Jimmy:

  • Timmy loves his ducted air conditioning system. No ugly unit on the wall, consistently conditioned air for every room, and plenty of value added to his property.
  • Jimmy also loves his air condition solution – a split system. He enjoys the slick, modern unit on the wall, the great price, and the perfect way to most efficiently make the place he sits most of the day – his home office – perfectly comfortable at all times.

The take-home message here is that whether you go for split system or ducted, it really all depends on you. And the best people to help give you advice? How about the masters of air conditioner supply, installation, repairs, servicing and much, much more? That’s us right here at Static Electrics, servicing the Sunshine Coast, Brisbane and beyond. Get in touch for a friendly chat today!