Window AC vs. Split AC – Which One is Best for Home? AC buying guide for beginners!

Window AC vs. Split AC – Which is Best for Home?


Window AC and split AC are both types of air conditioning systems used in residential and commercial spaces.  But they differ in their installation and design.

While both serve the same purpose of providing comfort in hot weather, they differ in terms of installation, aesthetics, cooling capacity, energy efficiency, noise levels, maintenance, and cost.

Understanding the differences between these two types of AC units can help individuals make an informed decision when choosing the most suitable option for their specific needs.

In the following sections, we will delve into each of these factors and compare Window AC and Split AC to assist in the decision-making process.

Window AC vs. Split AC
Window AC vs. Split AC


Window AC units are self-contained systems that are designed to be installed through a window or a specially designed opening in a wall. The unit consists of a single housing that contains all the components, including the compressor, condenser, evaporator, and fan. The installation process involves placing the unit in the window or wall opening, securing it in place, and sealing any gaps to ensure proper insulation. The electrical connections are typically made through a nearby electrical outlet. They are relatively easier and less expensive to install compared to Split AC units.

Split AC systems consist of two separate units: the indoor unit and the outdoor unit. The indoor unit, which contains the evaporator coil and the cooling fan, is installed inside the room. It is typically mounted on a wall or suspended from the ceiling. The outdoor unit, housing the compressor, condenser coil, and fan, is placed outside the building, usually on a wall or on the ground. The installation process requires professional assistance as it involves connecting the indoor and outdoor units through refrigerant lines, electrical wiring, and drainage pipes. Holes may need to be drilled in the walls for these connections. The outdoor unit also requires a stable and level base for proper installation.

Window AC vs. Split AC


Window AC units are typically visible from both the inside and outside of the building. They are designed to fit in a window or a specially designed opening in a wall. The unit protrudes from the window or wall and can obstruct the view to some extent. Window AC units are generally bulkier and have a box-like appearance. Their design and placement can affect the aesthetics of both the interior and exterior of the building.

Split AC systems offer better aesthetics compared to Window AC units. The indoor unit, which is mounted on the wall or ceiling inside the room, has a sleek and compact design. It blends well with the interior decor and takes up minimal space. The indoor unit is relatively unobtrusive and does not obstruct the view or disrupt the room’s aesthetics. The outdoor unit, located outside the building, is also designed to be visually appealing and often has a slim profile. The discreet appearance of the Split AC system helps maintain the overall appearance of the building.

Window AC vs. Split AC
Window AC vs. Split AC

Cooling Capacity

Window AC units are available in various cooling capacities to suit different room sizes. They typically range from around 5,000 BTU (British Thermal Units) for small rooms to 25,000 BTU or more for larger spaces. The cooling capacity is specified by the manufacturer and is an important consideration when selecting a window AC unit. It is essential to choose a unit with an appropriate cooling capacity that matches the size of the room to ensure effective and efficient cooling.

Split AC systems also come in a wide range of cooling capacities to accommodate different room sizes. The cooling capacity of a split AC is determined by the combined capacity of the indoor and outdoor units. The indoor unit’s cooling capacity generally ranges from around 9,000 BTU to 36,000 BTU or more. The outdoor unit’s capacity is matched to the indoor unit to ensure optimal performance. Split AC systems offer more flexibility in terms of cooling capacity options, allowing for efficient cooling of both small and large areas.

Energy Efficiency

Window AC units are generally less energy-efficient compared to Split AC systems. They may consume more electricity to provide the same cooling capacity due to their design and limitations.

Split AC systems are more energy-efficient as they can incorporate advanced features such as inverter technology, which adjusts the compressor speed based on the cooling requirements. This results in reduced energy consumption and improved efficiency.

Due to the following aspects, Split AC systems are more energy-efficient

1). Inverter Technology: Split AC units often incorporate inverter technology, which allows the compressor to adjust its speed according to the cooling needs. This results in energy savings as the compressor doesn’t have to constantly start and stop, consuming less power.

2). Zoning Capability: Split AC systems offer the option of zoning, where you can control the cooling in different zones or rooms separately. This allows you to cool only the areas that are being used, saving energy by avoiding unnecessary cooling in unoccupied spaces.

3). Better Insulation: Split AC systems have a separate indoor unit that is installed inside the room. This design minimizes air leakage and ensures better insulation, preventing the loss of cool air and improving overall energy efficiency.

4). No Air Leakage: Window AC units, being installed through a window or wall opening, can have more air leakage compared to Split AC systems. This air leakage can result in the entry of warm air from outside and the loss of cool air, leading to reduced energy efficiency.

5). Improved Design: Split AC units are typically designed with advanced components and features that enhance energy efficiency. These include high-efficiency compressors, improved heat exchangers, and optimized airflow design, all contributing to lower energy consumption.


Window AC units tend to produce more noise compared to Split AC systems. The noise level can be bothersome, especially for light sleepers or in areas where low noise levels are desired.

Split AC systems are quieter as the noisy components, such as the compressor and condenser, are placed in the outdoor unit. The indoor unit operates silently, providing a more peaceful and comfortable environment.

Maintenance and Repairs

Window AC units are relatively easier to maintain and repair. Cleaning the filters and maintaining the condenser coil can be done by the user. However, if any major repair or component replacement is required, professional assistance is recommended.

Split AC systems require professional maintenance and repairs. The indoor unit filters still need regular cleaning, but servicing the outdoor unit, including the compressor and condenser, requires expertise and professional attention.

Maintenance and Repairs of Window AC

Window AC vs. Split AC
Window AC vs. Split AC

Condenser Coil – The condenser coil of a Window AC may accumulate dirt and debris over time, which can affect the unit’s cooling performance. Cleaning the condenser coil is necessary to maintain optimal efficiency. It is recommended to hire a professional technician for this task.

Drains and Drainage System – Window AC units have drainage systems to remove condensate. It is important to check and clean the drains periodically to prevent blockages and ensure proper functioning.

Fan and Blower – The fan and blower in a Windows AC unit may require cleaning or lubrication to maintain smooth operation. Regular inspection and maintenance of these components are necessary to avoid issues such as noisy operation or reduced airflow.

Electrical Components – The electrical components of a Window AC, including the power cord and control panel, should be inspected for any signs of wear or damage. It is crucial to address any electrical issues promptly and seek professional assistance if needed.

Maintenance and Repairs of Split AC

Window AC vs. Split AC
Window AC vs. Split AC

Condenser Coil – The condenser coil of the outdoor unit in a Split AC can accumulate dust, dirt, and debris. Cleaning the condenser coil is essential to ensure efficient heat transfer and optimal performance. Professional assistance is recommended for this task.

Refrigerant Levels – Split AC systems require proper refrigerant levels for effective cooling. If there is a refrigerant leak or insufficient refrigerant, it can impact the cooling capacity and efficiency of the system. Professional technicians are trained to handle refrigerant-related issues.

Compressor and Fan Motors – The compressor and fan motors in the outdoor unit may require regular maintenance and lubrication. Proper lubrication helps in smooth operation, reduces friction, and extends the lifespan of these components.

Electrical Connections – It is important to inspect and tighten the electrical connections in a Split AC system to prevent loose connections, electrical faults, or short circuits. Any electrical repairs or adjustments should be carried out by a qualified technician.

Remote Control and Thermostat: The remote control and thermostat of a Split AC should be checked for proper functioning. If there are any issues with temperature control or programming, it is advisable to consult the user manual or contact the manufacturer for assistance.


Window AC units are generally less expensive to purchase and install compared to Split AC systems. They are a more budget-friendly option, especially for cooling smaller spaces.

Split AC systems are typically more expensive to purchase and install due to the separate indoor and outdoor units. The professional installation cost adds to the overall expenses. However, their energy efficiency and long-term cost savings can offset the initial investment.

What are the differences between Window AC vs. Split AC

Window AC vs. Split AC


Sl. No.


Window AC

                                                                                Split AC



The evaporator and compressor both are available in the same unit.

In the split AC, the evaporator is available in the inside unit, and the compressor is available in the outside unit.


window AC has a single unit

 While Split AC is divided into two units.


The compressor of the window AC is near the room, so it produces more noise in the room.

The noise of the compressor is very less in the room because it is placed outside the room. 


Window AC requires more space.

While Split AC requires less space.


Window AC can be placed or fitted in the window only.

The indoor unit can be mounted at any suitable location in the room as per the user’s choice.    


Difficult to relocate.

 Easy to relocate.   


The installation of the Window AC is very easy.

The installation of the Split AC is complicated.           


A technician is not required for the installation of this AC.

The technician is required for the installation of Split AC.     


Installation charges for Window AC are low.

Installation charges of Split AC are also high.          


Window AC does not increase the beauty of the house.

Spit AC has a good appearance and increases the beauty of houses


It consumes more electricity compared to a split AC.

It consumes less electricity compared to the window AC.


Its cost is less than the split AC.

Its cost is more than the window AC.


Generally suitable for the cooling of small areas.

Suitable for cooling both small and large areas.


Choosing between a Window AC and a Split AC depends on various factors such as the cooling requirements, installation limitations, budget, and aesthetic preferences. Window AC units are simpler, cost-effective, and suitable for smaller spaces. On the other hand, Split AC systems offer better aesthetics, energy efficiency, and flexibility in cooling capacity. It is recommended to assess.

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Window AC vs. Split AC

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Window AC vs. Split AC

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Window AC vs. Split AC

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