There’s a lot of factors that will influence the decision. You may be renovating the family home or building your dream home or considering selling and want to add value. The capacity of your mains cable will also play a part in the decision process, as will your budget. So a hasty or ill-informed decision can be costly!

Split systems

A split system is an air conditioning system where part of the system (the condenser) is located outside the house, usually on an external wall. The rest of the system (the head or indoor unit) is located inside, normally fixed high on an interior wall or low as a floor-standing unit.

Ducted air conditioning can be the most efficient cooling system for homes and businesses on the market today. Ducted Air Conditioners can cool every room in your home or office using just one primary system.

Through one system, you can keep the temperature of your bedroom cool and inviting for cosy sleep; living room little balmy for a perfect party; your kids room comfortable for their daily activities and much more. But that does require additional components and time to install which will elevate the price of course.

In general Ducted AC is the ideal cooling system for Queensland climate and big houses with more than 3 bedrooms. It allows for complete control of the temperature inside the premises.

How Does Ducted AC Work?

Ducted air conditioning works by funnelling cool air from a central unit (usually installed in your roof) through a series of ducts to every room in your home. The circulation of air can be zoned, that allows you to control airflow, temperature and turning off any zones. This reduces the running cost and allows the temperature of the occupied spaces to remain comfortable.

When is Ducted AC the Right Choice?

If you answer ‘yes’ to any of the following points, then ducted AC is the right choice for you and your family:
  1.   Want full control over temperature and zone control room-by-room?
  2.  Have valuable possessions (furniture, books, antiques) that may be damaged by humidity.
  3.  Want an even air distribution in your home or office during those stifling hot summer days?
  4.  Want to have an energy efficient system to cool/warm/maintain the temperature of your entire home or office?
  5.  Do you want least noise in your house or office?
  6.  Are you constructing a new home or doing major renovations?

The Advantages of Ducted AC

1. Save on Electricity Costs

If a house has more than 3 Air conditioned rooms, then ducted AC will provide better energy efficiency as compared to the maintenance costs for several different AC units.

Generally ducted AC systems come with an inverter based system that continually adjusts its cooling and heating output in accordance with the temperature in the room. Once the desired temperature is reached, inverter technology ensures it is constantly maintained – keeping you comfortable and at the same time running more efficiently.

2. Less Noise

With all the noise producing agents farthest from air vents, ducted AC is the quietest. The system is quieter than split AC systems which are pretty quiet.

3. More Control and Flexibility

With the additional installation of the MyAir system and zone control, you have the potential for much greater control over how you cool your home when compared to other AC systems as you can control which rooms to cool from your smartphone.

4. Controlled Temperature with Zoned AC

As above, you can control the temperature in individual rooms via zone controlling. Eg. Living areas cooling and bedrooms not.

Ducted AC that is zoned will reduce electricity costs while maintaining a very comfortable living and working environment. At night, you can easily lower the temperature in only the bedrooms to ensure a good night’s sleep. This means you avoid the expense of cooling the entire house for no reason.

In a business setting, you can cool the office or workshop, while leaving storage areas uncooled. This will ensure a comfortable work environment without needless expenses.

5. Ducted AC Units saves wall space!

As above, you can control the temperature in individual rooms via zone controlling. Eg. Living areas cooling and bedrooms not.

Some houses do not like the look of several box-like outdoor split system AC units! Since ductwork usually runs under the floor or in the ceiling, the majority of the equipment for a ducted AC unit is out of sight.

The one central outdoor unit can be installed down the side usually, while the indoor unit will be out of sight in the ceiling or under the floor. This allows your wall space to be used how you want it to be.

6. Ducted AC Adds Value to Your Home

Because it is a superior air conditioning system and more permanent in nature, ducted AC adds more value to your home when it comes to selling your house.

7. Protect Your Family’s Health

This applies to most ACs, especially the reverse-cycle air-conditioning ones. The ducted AC takes the moisture from the air and allows temperature control. This is beneficial for asthma patients, elderly people, children and people with compromised immune systems.

8. Marathon Runner

A regular serviced Ducted AC should easily go beyond 15 years. We regularly see units installed around 10 years ago that have just been regularly serviced and they continue to enjoy trouble free comfort over 10 years later.

The Disadvantages of Ducted AC
1. Installation Cost

Despite the long-term savings, the initial costs of installing the ducted AC is bit high.

One of the main advantages of a split system is that it’s cheaper to buy than a ducted system and can be installed in one part of the house at a time. You might start with a main living area and add additional units as your budget allows, for example. Split systems are also your first choice for apartment living or in double-story dwellings as installing ducting between the levels post construction can be impossible in some cases

Split systems are also a wiser option than ducted systems in smaller properties or where only a single room requires air conditioning.

Generally speaking, a split system is operated by remote control, putting you in full control of the temperature of the room or area in which the unit has been installed. A split system can have lower installation and running costs than a ducted system, too, but cost shouldn’t be the only factor in deciding which system is ideal for your home. Whilst generally cheaper to purchase, split systems have some limitations too.

Limitations of split systems

One such limitation relates to the cosmetic impact or aesthetics of a split system. The necessity of having a condenser unit located outside your home may create problems. Whilst we will always make an effort to locate the unit as discreetly as we can, it isn’t always possible to hide them away. If the unit must be located in a conspicuous place, you may need to spend extra money on screens or plants to preserve your property’s street appeal. Similarly, you may need to turn your mind to the potentially negative impact of a split system on your freedom to decorate the interior of the room in which it’s situated.

A split system’s capacity to cool can be limited to the room or zone in which it is installed. That’s not so much a problem if you choose a powerful system and have few interior walls. However, your split system’s capacity to push cold air beyond its immediate precincts relates back to some important considerations:

  •  How much power it will consume,
  •  How costly it will be to run,
  • The position of the unit on the interior wall, and
  • The layout of your home.

Some more expensive systems (multi-headed split systems) partially alleviate this problem. They allow for more than one room or zone to be cooled at once. However, the need to have the exterior unit relatively close to the head units will affect whether this is a suitable solution for your property. Nevertheless, a multi-headed split system may be a viable option where a ducted system is not feasible due to limited space for ducting.

An alternative solution to this problem is to install more than one split system. In considering whether that is an option for you, you need to take into account a number of factors:

  •  The increased installation costs associated with having additional split systems, but maybe outweighed by upgrading of consumers mains to cope with a ducted unit
  •  The limitations in terms of interior wall space and the potentially adverse cosmetic impact of having several interior units,
  • The need for additional condenser units to be located outside, and
  • Any impact noise from your system may have on your neighbors? use and enjoyment of their own properties

Nevertheless, there are definitely circumstances in which a split system is an ideal solution to the dilemma of cooling your property effectively and efficiently.

2. Needs Careful Planning

Ducted AC installations need careful planning and attention. The location of the grills and registers plays an important part for optimal and efficient performance.

The planning of the locations of all the ducts, grills, outdoor unit and management of zones are all important to manage though. We will guide you with this.

3. Ducted AC is suitable for some but not all premises

The type of house construction, ceiling cavity and outdoor area size influence the choice of ducted AC and hence some houses may not be able to take advantage of ducted AC. The only way to find out if your premise is suitable is to get a quote from a professional AC installation firm.

4. Call the experts for Optimal Performance

Ducted AC is a little more complex than installing a split AC. As explained above, along with proper planning and installation you need the best parts in building the ducted system.

For instance, the Ducts used in the system need to be of highest thermal “R” rating quality and offer long-term insulation. We use the duct system recommended by the ducting industry association, ADMA to meet the Australian standard.

Similar process applies for energy efficiency. All our ducted AC quotes exceed Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) set by Australian legislations regarding energy efficiency.

Since Reefcosa electrical air & solar also offer electrical services, we provide services for installing all the necessary electrical infrastructure required for your ducted AC.

Therefore, you have one point of contact who will handle the project from start to finish.

Reefcosa also offer the MyAir app, one of the most advanced air-conditioning control products on the market. The Australian-made MyAir allows users to fully adjust the temperature and airflow in up to 10 rooms.

The MyAir App allows complete air conditioning control even via smartphone or tablet. This means you can turn down the AC when you leave home in the morning, and turn it up from the office before you head home.

If you want more control, you can add sensors that allow for full individual room temperature control.

How do you decide: split system or ducted?

You want it to be tailored to suit your property’s orientation and floor plan. You need it to suit your lifestyle and budget. It has to be able to rise to the challenge thrown down by Queensland’s unique and trying climate. These are all important considerations in deciding whether to opt for a split system or a ducted system of air conditioning.

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