Central vs Ductless Air Conditioning?

Oct 29, 2022

Central vs Ductless Air Conditioning?

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Whether you are renovating your house, or drawing up plans for your new dream home, you will have to select the right cooling system for your home. However, choosing a new air conditioning system may not be as much fun as choosing new furniture, but it’s just as important to get it right.

For some homes, a central air-conditioned system is best, while a ductless mini split may be the superior option in another home. If you are not sure which one is best for your situation, we’re here to help you out. Here’s what you need to know to choose an air conditioner that’s right for you.

Central Air Conditioning:

A central air conditioning system distributes treated air throughout the space using a network of ducts and fans. A supply duct carries the conditioned air to where it can enter the space via the registers. The air is circulated, it becomes warmer, and then a return duct and register carries it away to the air conditioning unit. This is a great option for those that like to set a system up and then forget all about it. The system will cycle off and on through the day and pairing it with a programmable thermostat will keep energy costs under control. The central AC system can then raise and lower the temperature as required from an app on your smartphone or at set times throughout the day.

Benefits of Central HVAC systems:

  • Whole-house heating and cooling: Assuming every room in your home has ductwork, central HVAC is the best way to heat and cool the whole house. This leads to even temperatures throughout each room for superior comfort.

  • Better air flow: Central air conditioning systems also provide better air circulation. Since ductless air conditioning systems cool the air in each room individually, there is less air movement throughout the space, sometimes leading to stagnant air and air pressure issues.

  • Widely available: Every qualified HVAC contractor sells central air conditioners, furnaces and heat pumps. You’ll have no trouble finding a unit that fits your needs.

  • Affordable: For the amount of heating and cooling they produce, central HVAC systems are more affordable than mini splits, assuming you don’t also need to install ductwork. Ducted air conditioning systems are also easier and less expensive to service since there are fewer components. They only require occasional cleaning.

  • Aesthetic look: Appearance is also an important concern in a residential space, and a reason you might want to choose a ducted air conditioning system. The only evidence of a central air conditioning system in your home is the registers that deliver the cool air. With a ducted system, everything is hidden behind walls and in crawl spaces.

Ductless Air Conditioning:

A ductless AC system is often referred to as a mini split system . It comprises an indoor handling unit and an externally mounted compressor. As the name would suggest, there is no ductwork; a small conduit is used instead to connect all the components together. This involves drilling holes in the walls during installation for the power supply cable, the refrigerant line and the condensate drain. This system can also be used to heat your home by drawing warmer air from outside and moving indoors. A ductless system is a very good option for an older building that may not have adequate room for the installation of ductwork.

Benefits of Ductless HVAC systems:

  • Perfect for homes without ductwork: If you want to keep your high ceilings, or there’s just no room for ducts, then ductless air conditioning is the answer. Plus, they can produce supplemental heat in the winter, perfect for add-ons where extending the ductwork isn’t feasible.

  • Offer zoning capabilities: While it’s possible to separate your home into heating and cooling zones with a central HVAC system, it’s utterly effortless with mini splits. A single outdoor compressor can connect to up to four indoor, wall-mounted air handlers so you can control the temperature independently in different areas of your home.

  • Easy installation: Unlike window air conditioners that you pack up every winter, mini splits only need to be installed once. They mount to the wall where they don’t block the window and become a permanent installation. With no ductwork to worry about, installation is easy in homes that lack this feature.

  • Decrease in Dust accumulation: Since forced air is not traveling throughout the space via ducts where dust can collect, there is less dust introduced to your rooms.

  • Energy efficiency – Ductless mini-split systems are generally more efficient than central air conditioning systems. The ability to operate each indoor unit independently and the use of variable-speed fans also allows for energy savings in operation.


Central air conditioning can be an excellent option for cooling your house. It’s particularly well-suited when your home already has a central heating system with ductwork installed. In these cases, you can add a split system or replace your existing furnace with an all-in-one package system that provides heating as well as cooling.

A ductless system can be an excellent choice for your home if you don’t have existing ductwork. And with a ductless system, you’ll have the option of controlling the temperature in single rooms or zones. For older homes, plus additions and remodeling, a ductless mini-split system can be an excellent option.

Whichever system you choose, there’s one important consideration: make sure you choose a qualified HVAC expert like Tempasure.

Air conditioning is a complex system that needs to be properly installed to meet your needs, and configured by an expert such as Tempasure. We are happy to provide free assessments and are readily available 24-hours a day for all telephone calls and emergency circumstances. Call us today.