Radiators, Air Conditioner Installation, And Your Home's Cooling Needs

Does your home have radiator heating? If your heating system doesn't already have ducts, take a look at what you need to know about air conditioning installation.

Can You Install AC in a Home Without Ducts?

Simply stated—yes. It's possible. Even though your home doesn't have an existing duct system to force cool air into each room, you don't have to suffer in the summer heat. While the addition of ducts may add to the overall installation costs, this type of upgrade is possible in most homes.

Do You Have to Add Ductwork?

You want a new AC system, but your home has radiators. Does this mean you have to spend more to add an entirely new system of air ducts throughout the space? While you can add ducts, you don't have to. There are a few different options for homeowners who want to install air conditioning but don't have ductwork.

While a central AC system requires ducts, a mini-split air conditioner doesn't. This AC alternative cools your home by zones or rooms. It includes interior and exterior components. The HVAC contractor will mount the interior component on the wall. Even though a mini-split AC unit doesn't cool centrally (from one central location), it does have an outdoor condenser like central air conditioning.

If you don't want to invest in a mini-split system, window units offer a way to cool without duct installation. These units are typically the least-expensive option to buy. Even though you won't pay as much upfront (in comparison to central air or a ductless system), this option won't cool your home as effectively or as efficiently.

Which AC Option Is Right for Your Home?

Are you ready to install a new AC system? If you're not sure which option is right for your home, talk to an HVAC professional. The air conditioning installation technician can evaluate your home and provide you with AC options. Even though the addition of a full duct system is a potentially pricey investment, AC products are available in many different price ranges.

Before you choose one option, discuss the fine print with the technician. Ask about the expected annual energy usage (the price you'll pay for electricity/cooling bills), how well the AC unit cools your home, and how much demolition is necessary for the installation. A new set of ducts may require the contractor to break through walls, while a mini-split system installation doesn't require an extensive demo.