5 Factors to Consider When Choosing Ducted Air Conditioning

affectionate and loving mixed-race family sitting

Ducted air conditioning is an advanced form of climate control that provides comprehensive heating and cooling solutions for your entire home.

While split system air conditioners are convenient and popular, they are only suitable for a single room or living space, leaving the rest of your home vulnerable to extreme temperatures. With ducted air conditioning, you can enjoy the benefits of climate control in every part of your home. It ensures that you and your family can stay comfortable no matter where you are.

While some people may believe that ducted air conditioning is an expensive option, it is actually an investment in your comfort and well-being. It can also add value to your home and potentially reduce your energy bills in the long run. Let’s take a look at five factors to think about if you’re considering ducted AC.

1. What Exactly is Ducted Air Conditioning?

Ducted air conditioning is a comprehensive solution for regulating the temperature of your entire home. This type of system comprises an outdoor compressor and a centralised indoor unit that is installed either in the ceiling or under the floor.

A network of discreet air ducts connects the central unit to vents situated around your residence, thereby allowing you to control the temperature in as many rooms as you desire. One of the benefits of ducted air conditioning is that it often incorporates reverse cycle technology, which means it is capable of both cooling and heating your home.

The temperature and settings can be easily managed via a wall-mounted thermostat. Many contemporary systems also come equipped with smart features that allow users to control the airflow via a smartphone or tablet app.

2. How Much Does Ducted AC Cost Upfront?

Ducted air conditioning represents the most comprehensive form of climate control available in the market. Although the initial costs of installation are generally higher than other AC systems, the benefits of this technology far outweigh the additional expenses. In addition to the central unit and outdoor compressor, a ducted air conditioning system requires the installation of:

  • Air ducts
  • Wiring
  • Drainage

It also may involve the potential removal of any existing system. The combination of these components contributes to the higher overall cost of installation.

However, it’s important to consider ducted air conditioning as a long-term investment with immediate returns. The comfort and convenience provided by this technology are unparalleled, making it a valuable asset to any residence.

The cost of a ducted air conditioning system will vary depending on the size of the property and specific requirements. To ensure transparency and avoid unexpected expenses, it’s recommended to obtain a fixed-price quote from a qualified professional.

3. How Much Does It Cost to Run?

The operating cost of a ducted air conditioning system depends on various factors such as the type and size of the system, energy rating, home size, operating temperature and local electricity rates.

When determining the cost of new appliances, you typically look at the Energy Rating label (the familiar red and yellow sticker). However, ducted air conditioners are not required to display this information. Some do choose to, while others do not.

Here’s how to calculate the maximum running cost of a ducted air conditioning system:

  • Check for a printed label on the unit, or an online description, that states the system’s kilowatt usage per hour (kWh).
  • Refer to your most recent energy bill to determine the cost per kilowatt. Since energy prices vary by state, it is more accurate to use a previous statement than an online search.
  • Multiply the air conditioner’s kilowatt usage by the kilowatt-hour price on your recent bill to find out how much you would pay per hour of use.

Then you can use this figure to estimate daily usage costs based on how long you expect to run the air conditioner. Use this data to estimate quarterly and annual running costs, considering the difference between peak and off-peak energy rates, as well as the higher energy consumption of cooling compared to heating.

4. Why Not Consider Inverter Technology?

If you find that the projected operating expenses for your air conditioning unit are greater than anticipated, it may be worth considering a ducted air conditioner that uses inverter technology.

An inverter functions by regulating the electric motor’s speed in an air conditioner. This results in reduced energy consumption during the initial stages of operation, which could lead to lower operating costs.

Inverter technology offers the advantage of continuously adjusting performance to maintain the desired temperature. Unlike fixed-speed systems, which repeatedly turn on and off, inverter systems can fine-tune their operation to achieve optimal results while consuming less energy. This means that you stay comfortable without worrying about higher power bills.

5. The Major Benefits of Switching to Ducted

Ducted air conditioning systems have a well-earned reputation for justifying their cost with a range of benefits that can quickly outweigh the initial investment. These include:

  • Climate control for the entire home: Ducted air conditioning takes climate control beyond a central living space and expands into bedrooms, dining rooms, home offices and wherever else you desire.
  • Zoning increases energy efficiency: Zoning is an optional feature of ducted systems that enables everyone to enjoy their ideal temperature and airflow. Using the thermostat, you can adjust the heating and cooling of each room individually or shut down zones altogether to save on energy.
  • It costs less than you think: A ducted air conditioning system can also cost less to run than you might think. By making use of zoning and only treating necessary rooms at any one time, you can reduce running costs. Additionally, adjusting the temperature can also make a significant difference.
  • Ducted systems look good: As the entire system remains concealed within the roof and walls (and even under the floor, if necessary), a ducted system will fit right into your home’s aesthetic. The only visible aspects are the subtle vents that can be coloured and styled to match your decor.

In Conclusion

When it comes to air conditioning, one size does not fit all. While ducted air conditioning may be the ideal choice for those building their dream home and looking for a top-of-the-line system, those living in an open-plan apartment or single bedroom house might find a split system to be more than sufficient.

So, whether you’re constructing a new house or renovating an existing one, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons of both options to make the best decision for your needs and budget.

Please note: This information is provided for advice purposes only. Regulations differ from state to state, so please consult your local authorities or an industry professional before proceeding with any work. See our Terms & Conditions here.

Last Edited on: 3rd March 2023