AC Repair Guide: Understanding the Different Types of Air Conditioners

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Posted May 19, 2023

Did you know that one of the first air conditioners was invented in 1922? Once people realized how effective this device was, it spread everywhere. You will now be hard-pressed to find a home or business that doesn’t have an AC unit.

AC repair near me has also become a common need.

Repairing an AC Unit

What many people don’t know is that there are many different types of air conditioner options. Are you thinking about getting a new one?

Certain plumbers near me or HVAC repair near me can tell you about your options. A good plumber or electrical repair near me may also help you if your current AC unit is damaged. But what should you know about your options?

Keep reading and learn more about the different AC options and how an air conditioning service can help.

Central Air Conditioner

When your AC unit breaks down, it isn’t as simple as fixing a clogged toilet or water heater repair. It may be complex enough for you to call an emergency plumber or AC service to fix the problem. It is important to know the difference between different air conditioners in case you need yours repaired or if you need a new one.

A central air conditioner is one of the most common options. It is also one of the most extensive and effective options. This is because this unit involves ducts that flow throughout the entire house and deliver cold air to all the rooms.

ac unit

These ducts are usually installed before the house is built. This makes it easier to put the ducts in the right place. This type of air conditioner works in a very similar way to a central heating unit.

They both use ducts to push air of a certain temperature throughout the house. You can control this kind of AC unit with a thermostat. These units last many years, but they will eventually require HVAC replacement, as with any AC unit.

The Benefits of This Air Conditioner

It is fast and easy to replace or repair these units with the help of HVAC service companies or an HVAC technician near me since they are so common. If your house has a smart home installation, this smart capability can also reach your central air conditioner.

This allows you to control the thermostat even when you’re out of the house. You can also set cooling cycles. So, if you want the air conditioning to kick in at certain times, you can do this.

Central air conditioners are one of the more expensive AC units since they are more extensive. They cost between $4,000 to $8,000. But if you don’t already have ducts in your house, this cost can skyrocket.

This is because it would be necessary to tear out the walls and install ducts before the central air conditioner can start working. This AC unit is very quiet compared to many other options. It is also very efficient at cooling the entire house due to the ducts.

The downside is that the outside unit is not very attractive. Many people choose to hide it behind bushes or fences. The cost may also be too much for the average person.

Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioner

Suppose you have an older house that doesn’t have any ducts for a central air conditioner. While you can have those ducts installed, it would take a long time, be very expensive, and you’d have to destroy a large chunk of your home in the process. If you don’t want to go through all this trouble, you can instead opt for a ductless mini-split air conditioner.

Many older homes don’t have ducts for air conditioners since that type wasn’t invented yet. A ductless air conditioner is a much more straightforward option. This is also a good option if you have had additional rooms added to the house where your duct system doesn’t reach.

Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioner

This system is called a mini-split system because it consists of two units. The first unit is a condenser, which is installed outside. There is then a compact blower unit that has to be installed on one of the walls inside your home.

This blower unit may be a downside to those who are very specific about their interior design. There is no way around having this unit on your wall. Some people like to cover it or disguise it with certain decorative items to make it more attractive.

There is a conduit that connects the blower unit to the condenser unit. This conduit consists of refrigerant lines, an electrical line, and the drain line.

How It Works

If any moisture has gathered in the indoor blower unit, this conduit will direct the moisture outside.

This ensures the unit functions as efficiently as possible. The cost of a mini-split system can vary drastically. It may sometimes be cheaper than a central air conditioner system at around $2,000.

But it may sometimes be more expensive, at around $14,000. This higher price is expected if you are using this air conditioner unit to cool a very large house. This is because these units are not designed for that.

While they can cool a whole house, they are best for smaller houses. They are also good for cooling a few rooms. If you want to use this option to cool a large house, you’ll need to be prepared to pay extra.

The good news is that this unit is great if you want to save on space. It is much smaller than a traditional AC unit. It also won’t cause you unnecessary cooling costs.

This is because you can easily control where the cold air is going and when the unit will turn on. If you have a guest room or two that you would like to cool down but not the rest of the house, you can choose to do so. But you have to balance the price with the quality of the unit.

Portable Air Conditioner

If you’re looking for something very affordable and convenient, look no further than a portable air conditioner. This option is great because it’s good for both homes and apartments. Suppose you live in an apartment and your apartment complex doesn’t have great air conditioning.

This can leave you sweltering in the summer. A portable air conditioner is a good alternative because you don’t need professional installation. You can buy it, set it up yourself, and enjoy the cool air.

The unit does most of the heavy lifting itself. The main thing you have to do is direct its exhaust hose to an open window. This allows the byproducts of the unit to leave the apartment.

Portable Air Conditioner

This is one of the most affordable AC units you can buy. It costs around $200 to $800. If you decide you want to move to a different room in your apartment, you can bring the AC unit with you.

While it isn’t super lightweight, it is still lightweight enough to carry or roll to another location. You can then set up the exhaust hose again and continue enjoying the cool air. This is ideal for small apartments or very small homes.

It can become problematic if you use this unit for a very large house. This is because you can’t cool several large areas at once.

Is a Portable Unit Right for You?

The room you’re currently in might be perfectly cool, but once you move to the next room, it might be sweltering.

You would then have to move the portable unit to that room and wait for it to cool down. But by the time you move back to the previous room, it may have already started to heat up again. This may not be a problem for you if you are a single person living by yourself.

But if you have a family, your family members will not likely all be in the same room at the same time. This would leave some of them in very overheated rooms, especially in the summer. This unit is also useless in rooms that don’t have windows.

This is because there would be no opening to put the exhaust hose to get rid of the unit’s excess heat and byproducts. The other downside is that these units can take up a lot of space. While they are portable, they will take up a large chunk of the room wherever you go.

This can be a problem if your home or apartment is already very small. There’s nothing worse than repeatedly bumping into this AC unit because there’s no room. Another downside is that this unit can be very noisy.

While some modern options have become quieter, they are still loud compared to other AC options. This can frustrate you and interrupt your work and chores. But if you can get past the noise and have a small area you want to cool down, this may still be a good choice.

Window Air Conditioner

If you’re looking for another affordable option, the window air conditioner may be the perfect choice for you. This is one of the oldest AC unit options, but it has been updated over the years to be more efficient. Many people don’t like the idea of paying thousands of dollars for an AC unit.

Window AC Unit


This is why many have turned to the window air conditioner. It ranges from $100 to $1,100, though you will rarely see options for more than $1,000. This price often includes installation along with the price of the unit itself.

While some people try to install the AC unit themselves, it is not recommended. If you’ve never done it before, there is a good chance that you could damage the unit while trying to install it. It may also not work properly if you don’t calibrate it.

You may also drop the unit out of the window and destroy it. This is a sure way to waste your time and money. It is best to let a professional handle the task for you.

The installation time will be much faster, and you won’t have to do any of the heavy lifting. You can instead sit back and enjoy the cool air from the AC unit once it’s up and running. The back of the unit should face outside, while the front should be inside the house.

This allows the unit to bring cool air inside the house. It also ensures that any heat and condensation that the unit releases goes outside.

How Effective Is It?

The main component of this ac unit is a powerful fan. This brings cool air into your home while pushing the heated air out. Many window air conditioners are wireless or are connected to a smart home system. This is a great way to control the temperature while you’re away.

These units are also useful for apartments. The downside is that they can only cool one room at a time. This may be fine if you put it in the room you use the most, like your office. But the rest of your home may remain uncomfortably warm.

AC Repair and Different Types of AC Units

Many different types of AC units can benefit your home. Some are very advanced and extensive, like the central air conditioner. Others are much simpler and more affordable, like portable air conditioners and window AC units.

If your current AC unit is having problems, you might need AC repair or replacement. Contact us today and see how we can help.

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