Ducted air conditioner: Are you looking to buy, service or repair one of them? Read below.

If you are looking to cool all areas of the property, ducted and multi-split systems are the best options for you. While both have some aspects that make them better than the other, here we’ll be focusing on the ducted air conditioners and the benefits of getting one for your home or office.

What are ducted air conditioners?

Ducted air conditioners are designed to control the temperature of the entire property from one central place. The main units in ducted air conditioners cool the air and then distribute it through a series of ducts to the different areas of your home or office. Additionally, there are also reverse cycle ducted systems that allow you to heat your property in the winter and cool it during the summer. These ducted systems are extremely versatile, meaning they can be installed underground, outside your property or on its roof, depending on the space available to you.

Adapting inverters to a ducted system allows it to operate at the speed necessary to maintain a constant temperature in your entire house, increasing its efficiency in terms of energy consumption. On the other hand, ducted systems without inverters continuously perform the on/off cycle to keep the temperature stable, making them consume more electricity.

How much does it cost to install a ducted air conditioner in Sydney?

This depends entirely on the size of your property, since the larger your house, the larger the ducted system will need to be. Consequently, the entire installation process will also be longer.

The actual cost of installation will depend on your house’s layout, as well as the material it is made of and the number of people living in it. Either way, on average, you will have to pay approximately $5,000 to install a ducted system on a small property, which can go up to around $10,000 for a one-story three-bedroom home.

Do you need a quote to install a ducted system on your property? Call us at 02 8283 1105 to get a free quote.

Ducted air conditioners: What are their benefits?

Ducted systems have features that can not be compared with any other equipment, and are great for most households. Above all, they are capable of cooling an entire house, creating a constant temperature. You’ll have peace of mind by knowing that wherever you are in the residence, it will be cool and comfortable. However, if you consider energy efficiency and do not intend to cool all rooms, you can “zone” the duct system, that is, you can program it to work only in the rooms you want. For instance, you may want to cool bedrooms at night, and the living room during daylight hours.

Moreover, ducted air conditioners go practically unnoticed because the only visible parts of these devices are their vents, which allow the circulation of cold air through the floor or ceiling. Its components are safely hidden during installation. So you no longer have to find a place to put a wall unit or try to decorate around air conditioning units, as you would with a split system. Also, although they are discreet, they are still easily accessible in case they need repair or maintenance.

Now, ducted systems are not an option for everyone; they can not be easily purchased from the store shelf, so to speak. Conversely, a ducted system must adapt perfectly to the size of your property. For this reason, it is necessary for a Sydney-based air conditioner professional to visit your property and design a custom solution, considering every aspect from the size of the air conditioning unit itself to the number of vents you need, as well as the number of areas to be cooled.

What are the best brands of ducted air conditioners?

Some of the top brands of ducted air conditioners in Sydney include Mitsubishi Electric, Carrier, Toshiba, Actron Air and Braemar.

  • Mitsubishi Electric provides a state of the art ducted air conditioning solution for your home or office. It has become the most popular brand in Australia for people wanting ducted systems. The brand is famous for providing low running costs, innovative design, quiet operation, as well as comprehensive warranty coverage.
  • Carrier air conditioners is another popular brand in Australia that provides a wide variety of air conditioning systems that are extremely efficient and suitable for homes, apartments, offices and commercial spaces.
  • Toshiba is a leading manufacturer of home appliances that are reliable and built with the highest quality standards. Toshiba is consistently ranked as a leading air conditioning brand in Australia, with a wide range for ducted as well as split air conditioning systems.
  • Actron Air is an Australian company that has given tough competition to international brands. They are committed to innovation and quality and are recognised by Australians for their reliability and a wide range of energy efficient air conditioning systems.
  • Braemar is a brand that’s well-known in Australia for creating a wide range of air conditioning systems, such as ducted gas heating, reverse cycle systems and evaporative coolers for homes and offices.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a ducted system?

We’ve listed some of the main advantages and disadvantages of having a ducted system, to help you make an informed decision.


  • Even though you can set one temperature for your entire house, you can also set up each room differently, provided your ducted system has the zoning feature.
  • Compared to split systems, they are quieter.
  • No other air conditioning system can provide the same level of uniform temperature control throughout the house.
  • It is the most discreet air conditioning, since it is entirely installed behind walls and ceilings.


  • There are space problems in some homes that make it impossible to install a ducted system.
  • Unless you have the zoning feature in your ducted system, you will end up consuming energy to cool the entire house, even if you just want to keep one room cool at a certain time.
  • Out of all the options of air conditioning available, ducted systems are the most expensive and labour intensive (at the installation stage).

Who is a ducted air conditioner suitable for?

Before you decide to opt for a ducted air conditioning system, you need to understand a few things to see if it’s suitable for you.


There are many more prerequisites to installing ducted systems, such as a specialist team that can install it, a suitable home as well as a larger cost to be paid upfront. A full set up usually starts from around $8,000, but is dependent on the size of the house and the complexity of the work. In comparison, split systems are usually cheaper to install and you have the liberty to spread the cost over time by installing them only in one room at a time. Other than the installation cost, the units themselves start from around the $3,000 price mark.

Ongoing Costs

​Split system units can be cheaper than a ducted system because they can run on an individual basis. However, as mentioned earlier, zoning the ducted air conditioning system will help control where it is running, potentially allowing you to save on the electricity bills.


While window and split systems are effective for small or single rooms, you will require a larger 8kw unit for effective cooling in larger rooms. On the other hand, a ducted system is perfect for covering larger areas and controlling an even temperature throughout the house.


Noise issues with air conditioning have been drastically reduced with the advancement in technology. And even though split systems can be very quiet nowadays, ducted systems are even quieter. In fact, you never notice any sound and that is also appreciated by your neighbours.


Ducted systems win in being extremely discrete. The outlets for ducted air conditioners are small, flat and integrated in the ceilings. On the other hand, window air cons or split units are buky and visible in the house, mounted on the wall. Both split and ducted systems have outdoor units, called compressors outside your property.


Some homes simply cannot accommodate ducted air conditioning because they don’t have any roof space. If the house has two floors, there might be an issue with running the ducts downstairs, meaning it might be a little difficult to get cooling or heating downstairs with this system. Sometimes, homeowners have a mix of both systems in such situations – with a ducted system upstairs and split units downstairs. With split units, you will have to accept a bulky unit in your house whereas both systems will require an external unit to be installed.


Even though any air conditioning system will be affected by environmental factors (including birds and other animals getting to the internal system), ducted systems usually last longer than any other. On average, a ducted system will last for about 10 to 15 years before the need to replace any major components. On the other hand, split systems usually last for 5 to 10 years before needing replacement. In any case, regular filter cleaning and proper maintenance will help add life to any air conditioning unit and a lack of it will shorten it. No matter what system you decide to go with, you will need to get them serviced on regular internals, staying on top of cleaning the filters.


​Before we talk about the potential risks, just keep in mind that air conditioning units that are regularly maintained, regularly serviced, and timely replaced if and when needed, should never pose any significant risk to your house. However, a poorly maintained ducted system will become contaminated and that can lead to illnesses getting spread with health risks. And while a general service will keep your air conditioner clean, you will sometimes need to get an ‘eco-clean’ service for a thorough job of removing the contaminants.

Heating Feature

Ducted systems are typically reverse cycle, meaning they will also work as heaters. While this feature is now also available in split units, it isn’t as effective as it is in ducted systems.

How long does it take to install a ducted air conditioner?

It usually takes one full day to install a ducted system. However, the actual time will depend on the complete job. If you are going to place the unit in the roof space, tin sheets or tiles, you might have to first get them removed to be able to fit the indoor fan coil inside.

There will be a need to locate a suitable outdoor area for the external unit to be placed. It will need to be as unobtrusive as possible and placed in an area that will not cause any annoyance to the neighbours. If the unit is not located close to other homes then there will be no problem with the noise, since most of the leading brands are making ducted systems that are super quiet.

How does a ducted air conditioner work?

The ducted system’s fan coil is mainly composed of an internal unit installed on the roof of the house and a series of ducts that reach pre-established areas of the property to keep them cool. From these ducts, each room can be heated or cooled separately, which is called zoning. This is done using the thermostat on the wall, which allows you to select temperature and other settings. The ease of cooling the entire property is evident here, and if you are building a new home or doing major renovations, then a ducted system becomes a viable option.

What you should watch out for when purchasing a ducted air conditioner?

As you plan to have a ducted air conditioning system installed in your house, there are a few things you’ll have to consider. Some of the most important factors will include:

  • Your budget
  • Your home layout
  • Your cooling needs in the long term

Find the Perfect Cooling Capacity

The capacity of cooling for your ducted system will determine how large a system you will need to buy for your house. They can range anywhere from 10kwh to 27kwh. Some of the considerations that will help determine the cooling capacity will include:

  • Combined size of all the rooms you’ll be cooling
  • Are there any parts of your house that are shaded (helping keep the temperature down)
  • The warmest parts of your house (areas that get the most sunlight or have appliances that heat up the room)

In case you are confused by the above information, you can always get in touch with us and our team will be more than happy to figure out the entire area and th perfect cooling solution for your house.

Inquire About Noise Levels

Because the ducted air conditioner will need to run all year round, it will be essential for you to keep the noise to a minimum. As you discuss your different options with us, we will help you look for a ducted air conditioner that will keep the noise levels as low as possible.

Compliance with MEPS Guidelines

Australia has a set of Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) that are used by manufacturers to keep the costs of running ducted systems low. The next time you shop for a ducted air conditioning system, you’ll need to be sure to find one that complies with MEPS and offers a good energy efficiency.

Always Opt for Professional Installation

As discussed earlier, ducted air cons can be installed on a variety of home layouts and designs. However, on the flip side, it is also possible to get the wrong installation on a house that will do more harm than good. To get the best cooling effect and energy savings, you will need to get the ducted air conditioning system installed by a team of professionals, such as HunterCON. Get all the information you need on how the air conditioner will be installed and who will be doing the work. You want only certified individuals to be working on something so technical.

Find More About Maintenance Requirements

Every ducted system has to be maintained at least once each year for a professional technician, to ensure that they keep running efficiently. There are also ways in which you can take care of the ducted system on your own to keep the system running efficiently and smoothly all year round.
It is important that you always find out more about the maintenance you’ll have to perform on your own and the cost of the annual maintenance, so that there are no unpleasant surprises. It will be a good idea to go for a ducted air conditioning system that will help you change the filters on your own without bringing a professional to do the job every few months.

Why choose us?

HunterCON Air is hands down your best choice if you want to:

  • Get advice to buy ducted systems from the best brands.
  • Receive the best technical service to extend the useful life of these type of air conditioners.
  • Repair them effectively and quickly, when the time comes.

Moreover, HunterCON Air offers you:

  • ✔ Fully Licensed Electric & Air Con Specialists with Over 8 Years Experience
  • ✔ Skye Interest-Free Finance
  • ✔ Free Quotes
  • ✔ Major Credit Cards Accepted

What warranties do you offer?

Here at HunterCON Air, we offer a solid 5 years installation warranty. That means you have complete peace of mind on the quality of the installation of your ducted system. This is why our customers love us and continue to hire us for upgrades and further installations.


Does a ducted system consume a lot of electricity?

If we assume that the electricity consumption rate is 35c per kWh, we can expect an expense of between $1.85 per hour to keep your property warm in winter and $3 per hour to keep it cold in summer. This will vary depending on the energy efficiency of your system and the number of rooms you want to cool or heat.

How often is it necessary to service a ducted system?

To keep your ducted system running efficiently a qualified technician should service it every 12 months.

What is the useful life of a ducted system?

It depends on the unit brand and model, but, on average, the useful life of a well-cared ducted system should last 20 years. After this period, its effectiveness is reduced, since its components are susceptible to wear or breakage.

What is the difference between ducted and non ducted air conditioners?

Non Ducted Air Conditioners

  • Indoor units need to be placed in every room for individual cooling and heating.
  • Each indoor unit operates entirely independently, allowing individual temperature setting.
  • The independent control allows you to adjust temperature in different environments with elderly people and infants along with any situations that might need adjustments during the day.
  • Non Duct air cons allow environments with multiple interior spaces like tenant buildings and offices to adjust temperature independently by rooms.

Ducted Air Conditioners

  • Air is passed through ducts from one central location to cool and heat all rooms.
  • All rooms are air conditioned at the same temperature.
  • The central control is suited for environments that need to largely remain constant during the day and it provides the convenience of a uniform environment.
  • Ducted systems are great for providing uniform air conditioning in large spaces, such as libraries, large retail stores or public facilities.

Can you upgrade a ducted aircon?

While it is possible to upgrade or retrofit compatible ducted air conditioning systems with smart control technology, there are higher costs than if you had installed iZone from the outset.
Typically, you will need to pay upwards of $1000 to $1500 to upgrade your system as it usually involves the following labour and material costs:

  • Discarding the old controller and patching the wall
  • Adding WiFi to a system that may not have WiFi enabled parts
  • Installing extra zones to a system with very few zones in the first place
  • Changing duct layouts to add in additional zones.

Find out more about our smart air conditioning solutions for new home builds and air-con installation.

Please contact us so we can help you.

Why Choose HunterCON Electrical And Air

There are many reasons why more and more people want to hire HunterCON Electrical and Air’s services. It is not only because we have trained professionals who do their job to perfection, but also because of the rest of the staff who make it all possible and leave smiles on the faces of our valued clients. Indeed, HunterCON Electrical and Air offers you the following:

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Over 8 Years Experience
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Provision of Services Sydney-Wide
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We pride ourselves on our ability to provide reliable, hands-on service that you can count on, no matter the size of the job. Having a nimble team means that we can offer ongoing support to our clients, and see that you always know who you are talking to.

From consultation to installation to maintenance, attention to detail and customer satisfaction is at the core of the HunterCON ethos. We look forward to working with you!


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HunterCON electrical and air covers you on parts and labour for 5 years for no extra cost!

Continual, hands-on service is a hallmark of the HunterCON experience, and we strive to ensure all of our customers are satisfied from the first phone call, right through to any ongoing maintenance needs you may require.

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We are fully-licensed full service electrical and air conditioning specialists. No job is too big or too small for us to handle, so get in touch with us today for a FREE quote or call us 02 8283 1105

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