Window Units vs. Central Air Conditioning: What’s Better?   

Sep 30, 2022 | AC, Air Conditioning, Bexley, Central Air, Cool Air, Cooling Power, Easy Automation, Ohio, Pros and Cons, Temperature, Window Unit

Deciding what is the optimal choice of cooling unit to cool your home can be rather tricky. If you have found yourself in a position not knowing how to make the right decision for your home as to whether a central air conditioner or a window unit is the best thing for you, then you’ve stumbled across the right blog! Perhaps this isn’t the case, and you are not in the market for a new cooling system. But maybe, to some degree, you have wondered in the past what is the better of the two options. If this resonates with you, keep reading the following from your Bexley Heating & Cooling service professionals as we dive through each detail about window units and central air conditioning.  


First, if you list the pros and cons of both window units and central air conditioning, be sure to include these two factors. Using them will give you better direction to make the best decision for your home and family.   

  • EFFICIENCY- This is such a key factor to consider. It’s imperative to know that just because a cooling unit functions, that does not mean it is energy efficient. So, that could mean it is not the best choice for your home and needs. The type of unit (window unit or central air conditioner) you choose must be based on its ability to cool your home correctly. The size of the cooling unit and its capability to maintain your home’s temperature should be considered where efficiency is concerned. In addition, bear in mind that the larger your house is, the more powerful your cooling unit should be.    
  • COSTS- Where costs are concerned, upfront costs aren’t the only thing you should worry about. It’s likely that, at this point, you have a budget set on how much you can pay for a cooling unit. However, please remember that other costs (like monthly energy bills) can affect you later down the road. So, it could very well be that if you chose a cheaper type of unit due to its upfront cost, you would likely end up draining your pockets even more to keep up with the monthly energy bills.   


To begin, let’s list the pros first. An individual window unit can sufficiently cool one room down at a time. Think of it as a 1:1 ratio. It’s a good idea to note that window units (as the name suggests) may be installed either on a window or may even be installed on walls. Depending on the layout of the room it will be installed in, this could prove beneficial. Window units work for smaller areas, so it probably doesn’t need to be said that they are massively cheaper to purchase upfront. In addition, installation and maintenance are much less time-consuming and costly. As the old saying goes, “You get what you pay for.” Therefore, it would be wise to remember this when choosing a window unit. So, make it a point not just to choose the most affordable option. There are high-quality window units available for homeowners to purchase. However, you must select a window unit that is proportional to the size of the room in which it will be used. Additionally, there are a few other benefits of choosing window units. Number one: installation is easy, especially if you consider yourself handy. Most unit models come with manufacturer instructions. In addition, the modern models are multipurpose and can also heat a room! Isn’t that neat? Technology has undoubtedly developed considerably!

Naturally, every list of “pros” accompanies a list of “cons.” So, let’s look further at the downfalls of using window units. For example, if you choose to use a window unit and install more than five window units to cool five different rooms, you may end up paying more for monthly energy costs than what you would pay for by using a central air conditioning system. Not to mention, in terms of security, window units are probably not the safest option due to the gaping hole they leave in the walls or windows of your home. And last, it is essential to know that you won’t be able to utilize the window that the window unit will be installed within. So, you will want to keep this in mind if you enjoy opening specific windows to get some fresh air. 


Now, let’s move on to the positive pros of central air conditioner usage! Central air conditioners are large cooling units that function together with multiple HVAC components to create a cooling power that cools your whole home. But unlike window units, central air conditioners can, in fact, cool a whole house as opposed to just one room per unit. An added advantage is that central air conditioners use thermostats, and they are one of these components that allow for an easy automation process to maintain your home’s temperature. As a bonus, due to the automation, you won’t have to keep powering them off and on like you would with a window unit.  

Now for the cons of central air conditioning – because it wouldn’t be fair to let you think there were none. The first con we want to address is the most obvious – extensive upfront costs! Due to the much higher price tag, many homeowners may be weary of jumping in with both feet leading them to look for other options instead. Another point is that if your home does not already contain vents and ductwork, this will result in another costly expense. Finally, the size of your home and how much ductwork and vents will need to be installed will affect how much this additional job will cost. So, if your house does not have these, you must plan appropriately and factor that into your spending budget. But don’t let that disappoint you; there is a good side too! Having a central air conditioning system installed in your home will certainly increase your home’s resale value.   

In summary, when deciding between a window unit or a central air conditioning system, it all depends on if you need to keep one specific room cool or if you need your whole home to be cooled. Keep in mind that if you were to use multiple window air conditioners for several rooms, you will probably end up paying more in energy usage for multiple window units as opposed to the energy consumption a central air conditioner would use up. Nevertheless, the choice is yours! But if you have any more questions or maybe would even like to book a free estimate for a central cooling system, feel free to call Bexley Heating & Cooling at (614) 924-7856 or schedule an appointment online now by clicking here!