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Main Differences Between a Central AC & Window Units

central vs window

Thinking of buying a central AC system for your home? Purchasing an air conditioning system is an important investment and should be carefully considered. For example, do you know what kind of AC system you should buy? If not, there are factors to consider, such as whether or not your current home is already equipped with the ductwork needed for central AC.

Do you have enough space outside your home for the compressor unit? Do you rent? If so, a window unit may be more appropriate. Is your home well-insulated? A well-insulated home will keep your energy bill in check.

Pros & Cons of Central AC

“proscons”A central AC system is the ideal choice if you already have the needed ductwork in your current home, if you have the outdoor space needed for the compressor unit and if you can afford the initial installation and routine maintenance costs.

With a central AC system, you will save money in the long run on your monthly energy bills provided that your home has adequate insulation.

There are a few disadvantages to consider and they should be carefully weighed along with the advantages.


  • Consistent temperature year-round.
  • Controls indoor humidity.
  • Possible heating/air conditioning.
  • Programmable thermostat.
  • Reduces energy costs.
  • Maintain good air quality indoors.


  • Expensive to install.
  • Requires ductwork.
  • Requires maintenance.
  • Requires room for the compressor.

Pros & Cons of Window AC Units

“procon”Window AC units have been around for a long time. These units are generally inexpensive and you can DIY the installation yourself. They are also easier on the wallet because they do not require much maintenance.


  • They are inexpensive.
  • No Installation cost.
  • Take it with you when you move.


  • Inadequate air filtration.
  • Cool only the room you’re in.
  • Hot spots inside the home.
  • Can be noisy.

Which AC System is Right For Your Home?

“chooseright”If your home currently has a forced air heating system, you can probably install central AC. Likewise, if your current home already has ducts and vents, you can use them for the central AC system. However, central AC is not appropriate for apartment dwellers because there is no space outside for the compressor unit.

A central AC is expensive to install but it will significantly lower your monthly utility bill. Whereas window AC units are inexpensive and you can install them yourself. The drawback is that they cost you more if you install multiple units. Additionally, unlike window AC units, a central air conditioner will require regular inspection and maintenance.

Central AC system or window AC unit, which will it be? Carefully weigh the pros and cons of each cooling system before deciding. Then call Buric Heating and Air Conditioning in Elliot City, MD and enjoy years of reliable cooling in your home.