When you are in deciding what to you to keep cool for the summer season, I am sure one of the things you might be considering is whether to consider either window units installed in each of your rooms or just installing central air conditioning. There are surely a lot of pros and cons considered for both options, and it’s totally dependent on you as the homeowner on which you should use for your home. In Houston, of course, most houses opt for the centralized system since it is easier to operate, with the system only being operated, as its name denotes, by a central controller.
Does this mean that window units are more of a hassle to operate and will cost more compared to a centralized system? Not really, that is, if you are very meticulous about operating your window units to save on energy costs. So, here are the pros and cons of both systems, so that hopefully by the time you finish this article, you can decide which would be best for your home.
The pros of central air conditioning systems
Central air conditioning systems are better than window systems when it comes to air filtration compared to window units, and this is a very important quality for those who have allergies, asthma, or other respiratory concerns. Air circulation and distribution is also one of the main strengths of a central AC system, as your duct networks are responsible for evenly distributing the conditioned air to all parts of your home. With a window unit, the cooled area would obviously be the region closest to it. Finally, a central system takes the task of cooling your entire house, as long as you have ductwork and vents installed in all of your rooms, compared to a single-window unit that can only cool the room where it is installed in…
Room or portable air conditioners can keep you cool, as well. But they don’t circulate the air throughout your home via your air ducts. Central air conditioning alone can help prevent respiratory ailments, improve your sleep quality, and enhance your ability to fight off symptoms of allergies and asthma.
The cons of central air conditioning systems
Cost-wise, central air conditions are more expensive to install and run compared to a single-window unit. Also, when your system is in need of repair, the cost of repairing the entire system would already be more or less equal to the cost of a single-window unit. yes, it is that expensive, since the entire system will be inspected for damages and repairs, which is usually done to several components of an HVAC system.
Since they are meant to cover full household rather than the rooms in the home, the working cost linked with them also rises shockingly. This is because they need added power to run matched to individual window units.
The pros of window air conditioning units
A single window air conditioner is more or less only equal to the cost of doing a single repair to a component of a central AC system. Thus, if your place is more like a studio or a bachelor’s pad, one window unit should suffice. Also, there are more energy savings for window AC units since you should only be operating the ones where there are people in. So, for example, if no one is in a bedroom, the AC in the bedroom will not be turned on. On the other hand, the entire central air conditioning system will still have to be operated even if cool air will only be needed to cool particular areas of the house during different parts of the day. Finally, HVAC contractors can charge a lot when installing a centralized AC system, while window AC units can even be DIY projects.
In addition to the BTU output of your window AC, the price will also be affected by the brand name and the features offered. You’ll find that nearly every major air conditioner manufacturer offers a window unit, often in a variety of sizes. The list of features will vary from unit to unit and from brand to brand.
The cons of window air conditioning units
As mentioned above, window units by themselves are not that efficient in air filtration, so every room with a window AC unit should ideally be partnered with a humidifier or air purifier unit, which also costs a lot. Air circulation is not that efficient as well, so areas that are literally far from the AC unit will not be that cold compared to areas in the room near it. Finally, as mentioned earlier, if you have many rooms and you choose to install window units to each of the rooms, you may end up paying a lot because the cost of each unit can add up depending on how many units you will purchase.
Window AC units are also not at all energy efficient for larger homes. They are fine for a small room, but they have trouble cooling entire apartments or houses. When you’ve got a bigger space, you’ll need multiple units to keep your house cool.
If you are still undecided and would like more information about the pros and cons of centralized vs. window AC units, just contact us.