Which Kind of Air Conditioning Unit is Right for You


If your home has not been fitted with air conditioning by a professional, you’ll know what it’s like to be uncomfortably hot day and night during the heat of summer. You will no doubt have spent many nights tossing and turning, trying in vain to find a cool spot on the sheets. You may even spend a great deal of time at the mall throughout the days just to get some relief from the heat.

The decision to install air conditioning in your home will be one of the best decisions you ever made. But it is very important to get the right kind. Not only the correct type of air con, but the right size for your home is also important. There are three main choices in air conditioners.

  • A ducted system – expensive to retrofit and impossible for a flat roofed house. Great choice for new builds.
  • A split system reverse cycle – easy to retrofit but generally only cools one room well – depending on the layout of the home. Can heat as well.
  • A window system – smaller yet, cheaper and much noisier than the split system, but better than nothing. Not reverse cycle so can’t heat as well.

If your home was built without air conditioning and you are on a budget, either #2 or #3 would be your choice. Go for the split system if you can possibly manage it. These are almost noise free at least inside the home, and they are more efficient than those that sit in the window cavity. They look much nicer too. However, they do have to be installed by a professional as they are not plug-ins.

The outside unit must sit on a sturdy cement block, while the inside part will be installed high on the wall, which will need to be cut to allow the pipes to go through. The installer will see to all of that, so it’s not difficult to get the job done.

While it’s possible to buy your own unit and have an electrician install it, if you don’t know too much about which size you need, it’s a good idea to have it all done by an air con specialist who will come and look at your home to see where you want it and how large an area there is to cool. This way you can be surer of getting the right size unit.

You can also get split systems that are not reverse cycle, which are excellent if you don’t have a good heating system in place. They may not be quite good enough on their own if your climate is extremely cold in the winter, but they do a great job for people who feel the cold easily and would like a little more heat in the house.