Comparing Air Conditioning Options

Spring is right around the corner, and this is the perfect time to be comparing air conditioning options, so you are ready for summer.

Comparing Air Conditioning Options

Air Conditioning Option #1 – Window Unit

Knowing the benefits and drawbacks to various air conditioning systems will help you feel confident with the decision you make for your family. First, let’s explore window units. This is the most inexpensive option in air conditioning. Window units are designed to fit inside a window and are often used in apartments and condominiums.

Window units are designed to cool a room but do not have the power to provide air conditioning to an entire apartment, condominium or home. Another drawback to the window unit is that it blocks the view to outside and can be unsightly, especially if not installed correctly.

These units are generally noisy and can be difficult to install and remove. The benefit to a window unit is the price, which varies dependent on brand and size. A window unit can usually be purchased for $200 to $500 and comes with directions for installation by the property owner.


Air Conditioning Option #2 – Ductless Mini Split

Comparing Air Conditioning Options

Ductless Mini Split Units are becoming quite popular because of their energy efficiency and ability to heat or cool specific zones of a house.

A Ductless Mini Split System is made up of an indoor wall-mounted unit and an outdoor unit. The indoor unit is the evaporator, and the outdoor unit is the condenser.

Ductless Mini Split Units provide flexibility in heating and cooling and do not require ductwork. They are often used in new additions, tiny homes, shops and other smaller spaces. To heat or cool an entire home, multiple Ductless Mini Split Units may be needed, depending on the number of zones and the square footage of the residence.

While these units are more expensive than window units and require a professional technician to install them, they have a great potential for energy savings and can last for 15 to 20 years of use.


Comparing Air Conditioning Options

Air Conditioning Option #3 –

Central Air Conditioning

Central Air Conditioning is the most common option for whole-house cooling. All of the parts of the air conditioner are installed outside, with the exception of the air handler, which is indoors, usually near the furnace. There is a higher initial cost with Central Air Conditioning, but it is another energy-efficient option. Central Air Conditioning requires a professional technician for installation, as well.

In addition to the purchase and installation cost, annual maintenance is important to keep it running for peak performance. This maintenance also helps prevent problems before they begin and can extend the life of the unit.

The cost of Central Air Conditioning pays for itself with the sale of a home, so it’s a worthwhile investment.



Air Conditioning Option #4 – Portable Air Conditioner


The last air conditioning option worth mentioning is Portable Air Conditioners. These devices are becoming more widely used as an inexpensive cooling option, but Consumer Reports concluded that they provide even less cooling power than window units. Still, there are times when they have their uses. Some buildings have rules against the use of window units and a portable air conditioner would be an alternative low-cost cooling option.

Portable Air Conditioners also have some placement requirements, because they need an electrical outlet to run but also need to be near a window to drain. They are typically noisy when running and have water reservoirs that need to be manually drained to remove the extra moisture pulled from the air.


For additional questions about Air Conditioning Options or to schedule annual maintenance to keep your unit running smoothly, please contact us at Pilchuck Heating.

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