Ducted vs Split System Air Conditioning

  • Quality Air is your Brisbane ducted air conditioning specialist, servicing commercial and residential needs for over 30 years. If you are searching for answers about which type of air conditioning system best suits your space, split system or ducted, this article will help you decide. In the end, if you require further support in making the right choice, contact us today, and our specialists will be there for you.


      What is ducted air-conditioning?

      Have you ever stayed in a hotel before? Or wondered how it is possible to heat or cool different rooms with one control panel? This is ducted air-conditioning. The vents are discreet and can be placed throughout the commercial or private residence, offering the owner complete control over the airflow and temperature.


    What is a split system air-conditioning unit?

    The split system refers to the two separate parts that make up this style of air conditioning unit; inside and outside. The outdoor unit is installed against the exterior wall, whilst the inside unit is what you will see when you are in the room and where the air will circulate.


      What are the major pros & cons of each system?

      When cooling or heating your home, you want to create your ideal environment knowing you are using the most cost-effective and reliable system possible. So, let’s take a quick look at the pros and cons of ducted vs split system units.

  • Ducted Air Conditioning

    • Pros

      • Cost-effective in the long run
      • Energy-efficient
      • The reverse cycle makes them ideal for both heating and cooling all year round.
      • Operates from one central control panel
      • A ducted system is quiet and is designed to allow for different levels of airflow in different zones of the home.
    • Cons

      • Higher up-front installation costs
      • Ideal for a larger space that requires multiple systems (a ducted system does the work of multiple units)
      • It may not suit apartments, units or housing, designed with limitations to roofing/access.
      • A switchboard upgrade may be required in older homes by an electrician.
  • Split System Air Conditioning

    • Pros

      • Cheaper to purchase and install upfront
      • Ideal for small areas of the home such as a bedroom or home office
      • Operated by remote control
    • Cons

      • They require more wall space both inside and outside.
      • Running multiple units in the home at the same time can become costly.
      • A split system unit requires yearly ongoing maintenance and cleaning.
      • It can create more noise than a ducted system.
  • Maintenance

    Ducted air conditioning vents should be cleaned once every six months. This is important for numerous reasons, including to keep the airflow working correctly, for health and safety reasons. Keeping the vents clean from debris and a build-up of dust is easy; simply clean the filters with a mixture of warm soapy water.

    A split system unit requires ongoing cleaning to keep the filters free from dust and household debris. Did you know that you should clean your split system filters every two weeks? According to Daikin, “replacing a blocked-up filter with a clean one can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by anywhere from 5% to 15%”.

    Cleaning the filter is simple: remove it from the unit, take the filter outdoors, brush or shake off the dust. Next, you can gently wipe the filter with warm soapy water if required, ensuring the filter is 100% dry before placing it back in the unit.


    To install a ducted air conditioning system the costs vary. Finance for ducted air conditioning is available.

    To install a split system unit, the price varies depending on the brand, make, model, size and features of the unit. You can view our cost-effective / top-selling units here (add a link to the website). There are solutions for every home, business, and budget, so be sure to chat with our friendly and professional team today.

    Environmental Impact

    Are you concerned about your rising electricity bill? This is primarily a concern during the tropical Queensland summers and the cooler mornings of winter. So what connection does your electrical account and your air conditioning units energy efficiency have in common? It turns out; they are connected! Here’s why:

    New models are environmentally friendly and have a smaller carbon footprint when compared to older models.
    Air conditioning with a high energy-efficiency rating is guaranteed to lower your electricity bill.
    The unit’s size and its capacity have an impact as small units may need to work harder to cool a larger space.
    Check the energy rating label to determine how ‘green’ the unit is – the more stars, the more savings.


    One final consideration when looking to add a cooling or heating system is the aesthetic; how will it look in the space?

    Ask yourself a few simple questions:

      • Does the design matter for you?
      • How much space do you have for the unit?
      • Do I prefer vents on the wall/floor versus a fitted split system unit?
      • Do you want a remote control or a central control panel?

    Ducted air-conditioning is less invasive when the vents are placed in the wall or on the floor.

    A split system unit is larger and requires more room on the wall, plus it must be fitted to an area where the outside unit can also be attached.

  • Final Thoughts

    It plays on a few factors, including the type of space you are working with, your budget, accessibility, and expected usage when it comes to ducted versus split systems.

    Overall, talking to a specialist is the best solution to quickly learn the most affordable and accessible air conditioning solution for your personal, commercial or business needs.

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