When it comes time to install an AC unit in your home, which do you choose: a central AC unit that cools the entire house all the time? or a series of window units that heat individual rooms to the desired temperature?
Some may think this question a no-brainer. However, both options have their own unique advantages, as well as their own drawbacks. Keep reading to learn a bit more about installing central AC units versus window units and decide which one is the better fit for your St. Louis home.
What Are The Pros & Cons of Central AC?
The best thing about central AC is the convenience it offers. From a single point (the thermostat) you can control the temperature of the entire house. Central cooling evenly distributes cool air to every corner of your home, regardless of its proximity to the vent.
Central cooling is also the best choice option for anyone who suffers from respiratory issues such as asthma, allergies, COPD, etc. because it filters out allergens like dust and pollen that can aggravate those conditions.
For all it's advantages, though, central cooling does come with a pretty hefty price tag. Aside from the initial cost of the unit itself, the complicated installation does require the expertise of an HVAC professional. Central AC units also require regular maintenance at least once a year to prevent breakdowns, which often need pricey repairs.
Pros and Cons That Come With Window Units
If you are operating on a budget and looking for a less expensive alternative to central cooling, you may consider a window unit! Window units cost less than central units and, because they're ductless, are so easy to install you can probably do it yourself.
Window units are a popular option for those who are environmentally conscious as well, this is because they offer a more eco-friendly approach to home cooling: don't waste energy cooling the rooms you're not using. Window units provide you the option of turning the AC off when you leave a room, just as you would the lights!
The problem with window units, however, is that they don't cool a room as evenly or as efficiently as a central AC unit would. They also aren't as good as central units when it comes to controlling the air quality. If you or someone in your house has any respiratory condition, this may not be the best choice for you.
Which Unit is the Best Option for Your Home?
Overall, most people prefer the comfort and air quality of a central cooling unit over the more affordable window unit. When it comes to living in southern California, the pollen count and the seasonal humidity may be enough to convince you that a central AC unit is a must-have!
If you are adding an extension onto your house, however, and don't want to go through all the trouble of rerouting all of your ductwork into the new addition, you might consider installing a window unit only in that room, and getting the best of both worlds!