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Almost everyone knows there are two main types of air conditioners. People might not know the differences between these two types of air conditioners. There is the split system air conditioner and the window air conditioning unit, as you may already know. Although various kinds have been released into the market, these two remain the most common.

There seem to be more people yearning to have split system air conditioners compared to others, but they do not know the difference between this type and the others. Unless they find out through learning, marketers at stores may get them hoodwinked into buying their products instead.

Split system air conditioners have the largest market share, about 70%, as people prefer them to regular window types. Although buyers are usually taken in by the latest technologies quickly becoming evident in split ACs, most don't understand its functionality. 

Crucial Split System Air Conditioner Considerations

You should know a few essential things about this type of AC, which will give you a better user experience.

How does the split system air conditioner work?

The split system air conditioner works with an outdoor unit that contains refrigerant. The refrigerant serves as the coolant, and it is pressurised gas put in the compressor. A ducted air conditioning unit has several ducts or tubes through which this gas passes but later condenses into liquid form. The liquid is made to go through the expansion joint, which converts it into the gaseous state again.

When this occurs, a large amount of heat is gathered from within the space the AC is trying to cool, dissipating outward. Since the resultant gas serves the purpose of cooling the air down to a low temperature, it is called the refrigerant. The process is cyclic as the gas continues its back-and-forth movement into the compressor. Air from your room would pass through the cavity that holds evaporator coils. The coils keep the gas at very low temperatures and can cool the air.

There is a thermostat inside the air conditioning units that control the temperature. The air will continue to stay within the evaporator area until the temperature you have selected is attained. At this point, the air gets blown into the room. So the split system air conditioning is a process that this type of AC uses and entails sucking in warm air and lowering its temperature before it is blown back into the room.

Moisture in the room will condense during this process, but this is removed through the drain pipe connected to the outdoor unit. If you notice that the cooling of your air conditioning unit is not what it used to be, it could be the sign you need to know that something has gone wrong with its condenser component. You should get professional help from trained personnel qualified to handle such tasks.

How did the name split ACs come about?

The name split system air conditioners was given to this type of AC because it uses two components. The first component is a metallic cabinet placed outside, while the second is the air handler that contains the evaporator coil and is always inside.

The compressor and the condenser are connected and found in the outdoor unit. These two parts of the outdoor unit are connected using a duct or a pipe. If the AC is that of central air conditioning, several ducts would be used to connect the different building rooms while the bigger unit is placed outdoors.

In most cases, you will find that central air conditioning units are split. This is so because it is more energy-efficient this way. Repairs for a split system air conditioner are more straightforward and also cheaper when compared to a packaged unit. This is also definitely one of the reasons why most people opt for it.

Differences Between Split And Packaged Units

The significant difference that sticks out between a split system air conditioner and a packaged unit is in the ways they are constructed. In the case of a packaged unit, all its components are put together in one unit. The thermostat, condenser, evaporator, and compressor are in the same cabinet. The split unit helps to save space and can be easily installed as you can place it anywhere you find convenient.

You can put it on the other side of the wall or simply in your basement. However, you will need a good roof location for your packaged unit if you intend to use central air-conditioning. Verifications have shown that packaged air conditioning units consume more electrical energy than split units. Many aircon brands in the market now offer inverter technology with their split system.

This makes the air conditioning units more efficient in energy usage and also super quiet. The split ACs that come with the inverter technology can also handle current or voltage fluctuations, unlike what is experienced with packaged units. The air handlers for split system air conditioners are always installed indoors.

This enhances the lifespan of the evaporator coils and the AC filters. Should you need to repair the AC, it may not be necessary for the technician to enter your home. Depending on the fault the AC developed, essential repairs may be carried out on the outdoor unit without needing to work on the component inside. 

The Pros Of A Split System Air Conditioner

If many people prefer split system air conditioners over the packaged unit type, then there must be some benefits they are deriving from them. Some people prefer split-system air conditioners because of the following advantages:

Easy installation process

Compared to traditional systems, a split system needs much less installation time. While conventional systems use ducted air conditioning for cooling, a split system does not require ductwork to work.

The outdoor and indoor units require a connector between them, which is about 3 inches (7.6cm) in diameter. As long as this connector is in place, an electricity supply and a safe place to mount your units remain.

Manufacturers give varying lengths for refrigerant tubes, meaning your outdoor and indoor units can be up to 100 feet (30.5 metres) apart.

Greater energy efficiency

Surplus energy gets lost with central systems ductwork. There can be up to a loss of 30 percent in cooling energy with ducted air conditioning. The uninsulated ductwork installed in unconditioned spaces leads to energy efficiency issues.

As split systems offer a ductless design, it brings about an upsurge in energy savings and brings down the cost of future utility bills. In some cases, the ductless air conditioners go above double the energy efficiency of a standard air conditioner, arriving at units above 30 SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio).

They complement your décor

The indoor installation of a split system air conditioner is very flexible. You could have it suspended from the ceiling or hang it on the wall. Some even come in elegant and sophisticated jackets giving them an aesthetic appeal.

In addition, split systems are not as intrusive as traditional systems that require cutting a hole in the wall or dedicating an entire window to your air conditioner.

They are less noisy

Indoor ductless units are less noisy and can operate as silently as 19 decibels. This is significantly less noisy than a window unit. Since the ductless condenser is also slimmer in profile, it is possible to place them at different locations where noise needs to be avoided or where there isn't much space.

Increased security

Traditional window units may offer intruders a way into homes, but a split-system air conditioner is more security friendly. Only a small hole is needed for the conduit of a split system; this does not threaten your home's security. The same cannot be said of a hole in your wall, which people may target for an easy break-in.


Traditional AC systems use only one thermostat for the entire space they influence. Split systems, on the other hand, offer different cool areas within your home because they can split the space into zones.

With separate thermostats, you can control which parts of your home you want to cool. This means you can limit the cooling to choice spots, and less energy would be expended while saving you some money.

Heating and cooling

With reverse-cycle air conditioning, you can keep your home cool during the summer and warm during winter. The reverse cycle technology is an intelligent way many people are now using to cool their space all year round. This means it is no longer necessary to buy two separate units.

Contact Your Local Air Conditioning Expert

Everyone loves a refreshingly cool environment, especially during summer heat and humidity. You can achieve this with split system air conditioning. However, central air conditioning is expensive, but the apparent advantages make them highly desirable.

A split air conditioner system should satisfy your quest quickly if you want an affordable and unobtrusive way to cool your home. Contact your local air conditioning contractor if you want to consult on the best system for your home or have it repaired.