Mini-split vs Window Unit: Which Type of Air Conditioner Should You Buy?

It’s easy to find yourself in a dilemma while choosing a mini-split or window AC for your house or office. Since purchasing an AC serves as a significant investment, it’s logical to know the maintenance costs, performance, and other specifications. At Hurliman Heating, we offer installation services for both these types of cooling units depending on the size of the generator, unit, and space you’re working with. Moreover, to help you make an informed decision, we’ve compiled the pros and cons of mini-split ACs and window ACs in this post.

Comparing mini-split AC and window AC

Before recommending the right type of AC to you, we would like to explain the advantages and downsides based on specific parameters.

1. Lifespan

A window AC should last between 10 to 15 years before the maintenance expenses turn out to be expensive. On the other hand, a mini-split AC offers a longer lifespan; with proper maintenance, they should last around 20 years. Therefore, it would be logical to settle for a mini-split AC if you prioritize the durability of these systems.

2. Maintenance and care

Being an established HVAC servicing company, we recommend our clients wash these units’ filter screens once a month.

  • You need to remove the mesh filter and use soap to wash the grill.

  • If the air filter has mold, we recommend using hydrogen peroxide to clean it.

  • Besides, you need to vacuum clean the condenser and evaporator coils of a window AC. Ideally, you would need a brush attachment to remove the debris.

  • In case you find any coil fins bending, you can fix the same using a fin comb.

  • Moreover, the exterior side of the AC needs regular dusting.

  • If you own a mini-split AC, you must follow the same set of protocols as a window AC while cleaning it.

  • Besides dusting the exterior, make sure to clean the filter every month.

  • The pipes also call for timely cleaning since they circulate air throughout your home.

We advise scheduling an annual maintenance service with us for the proper upkeep of your mini-split AC.

3. Cost

You would notice a significant price contrast between ductless mini-split ACs and window ACs. While window AC units cost anything between $150 to $600, a ductless mini-split AC system can cost around $4,000 a unit.

Even the installation charges of mini-split ACs are higher than those of window ACs. With the latter, you need to shell out an installation cost between $200 and $300. However, when you purchase a ductless mini-split AC, be prepared to fork out at least $2,000, depending on the configuration.

The resale value of a window AC depends on the model and operating condition of the unit. However, you can expect a resale value of around $700 for a mini-split AC.

4. Energy efficiency

The model you settle for largely determines the energy efficiency of a window AC. Under this parameter, ductless mini-split ACs emerge as the clear winner since they are more energy-efficient.

With a mini-split AC, you can save around 40% of your energy bills compared to a traditional window AC.

5. Functionality

Reputed manufacturers design window ACs to manage indoor temperatures in one room at a time. British Thermal Units (BTUs) are used to measure their cooling capabilities. Considering this design, you need to invest in several window ACs if you want to cool the entire home.

The key advantage of ductless mini-split ACs is their capacity to cool several rooms at your home simultaneously. Besides, you can expand the system to the parts of your home that are currently not being cooled. This flexibility is another reason why ductless split AC’s popularity. The entire house requires only one cooling system. Besides, you can adjust the temperature in each of these segments.

Pros and cons of window ACs


  • The inexpensive cost of window ACs makes them affordable for most homes and commercial spaces.

  • The installation process is easier and cheaper compared to mini-split ACs.


  • Window ACs tend to be noisy. The ones that are quieter usually tend to be more expensive. However, even these expensive models can bother you with their noise during their dehumidifying cycle.

  • Installing window ACs make your home susceptible to burglars. Miscreants might try to remove these ACs from the outside and get into your home through the windows.

  • Window ACs tend to block a window, thereby depriving your home of natural light.

  • Window ACs lack visual appeal. So, if you are someone who prioritizes aesthetics, you wouldn’t like to go with window ACs.

Pros and cons of mini-split ACs


  • You need a single mini-split AC system to cool the entire home. A single outdoor condenser unit is capable of managing up to four units.

  • These units offer more flexibility when you install them. You can suspend mini-split ACs from your ceiling, hang them from your walls, and control them using a remote.

  • Mini-split ACs are far quieter compared to window ACs.

  • Ductless mini-split ACs require you to make just a single home on your wall. This minimizes risks like burglary, making it impossible for miscreants to enter your home through the opening.


  • These ACs are much more expensive, starting from around $1500.

  • Ductless mini-split ACs need a professional hand for installation, and the installation charges can be high.

How to choose?

Now that you know the perks and drawbacks of window ACs and mini-split ACs, it’s time to decide the one that would fit your home. In case you are on a low budget and need a short-term cooling solution, a window AC should serve your purpose. They don’t cost as high as mini-split ACs and the installation process is far less complicated. On the other hand, mini-split ACs offer a long-term cooling solution. These ACs are more energy efficient, and they offer value for your investment.

Feel free to contact us for professional installation services. We can also help you choose the right model based on your specific requirements.

If you are ready to start your service, please call us today
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