If you cannot afford or do not have duct work to support a central air conditioning system, there are two options – window units or ductless units. But, which is better? It depends largely on your budget, whether you rent or own and if there are any risks inherent in either choice.
First let’s look at window units. Window units are the least expensive form of air conditioning on the market and don’t require any work on your home to install. They are good for single rooms and smaller apartments as well, and they can usually be installed by one or two people without professional assistance.
The downside of a window unit is that it cannot cool your entire home, even in an apartment. Also, window units tend to block an entire window and they pose a security risk, especially on the first floor. They are easy to remove from the outside and therefore should only be used in extreme circumstances if the window is easy to access.
Ductless systems offer benefits that counter all of the downsides of a window unit. Specifically, they don’t block the windows and are mounted inside on the walls. They are also more efficient than window units, using 30% less energy on average than a comparable window unit. They can be sized to cool your entire home and they still don’t use ductwork so extreme installation methods are not needed.
However, a ductless system costs more than a window unit. They are more efficient, quieter, and less obtrusive, but they require a professional installation. Another issue to consider is whether you rent or own your home. Renters may not be permitted to have a system installed like this as it takes up more space and requires some work that could alter the building.
Which Is Better?
So, which should you choose? It depends on the specific needs of your home. If you have two or more zones to cool and can want to have a ductless system installed, it is a great long term solution. To learn more about how a ductless AC system would work in your home, call Bethesda HVAC contractor Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating at 301-670-0034!