Deciding to install a split system often leaves homeowners wondering about the time it will take. Split-system air conditioners, popular in Australian homes, have their installation times influenced by various factors.

This article aims to break down these elements and provide an estimate on how long you might expect the process to last, making your heating and cooling upgrade less of a mystery. Keep reading for insights that could save you time and hassle.

Key Takeaways

  • It usually takes 4 to 8 hours to install a standard split system air conditioner.
  • The type of unit, size of the system, and any structural challenges in your home can affect installation time.
  • Installing multi – split systems often takes a full day due to connecting multiple indoor units.
  • Costs for installing a split system can range from $600 to $5500, plus extra for professional installer fees.
  • Hiring professionals is important because they have the tools and knowledge for safe and efficient installation.

Understanding Split System Air Conditioners

Two units of a split system air conditioner surrounded by greenery.

Split system air conditioners have two main parts: the outdoor unit and the indoor unit. The outdoor part is the condenser coil, which releases heat from inside your home. Inside, the fan coil unit blows cool air into your rooms.

This type of air conditioner is popular because it can heat or cool different areas in your house without needing ducts. I found this out first-hand when installing one in my own living room; it was a game changer for both summer and winter.

These systems are energy efficient too. They use less power than other heating and cooling methods to keep your space comfortable year-round. Without ducting, you lose less air and energy, making split systems a smart choice for saving on electricity bills.

Next up, let’s look at what can affect how long it takes to get one of these units up and running in your home.

Factors Affecting Installation Time

A technician installing a large air cooling system in a spacious room.

Different things can change how long it takes to put in your air cooling system. Things like the kind of cooler, if your house is hard to work on, how big the system is, and what setup you already have can all make a difference.

Type of Air Conditioning Unit

The type of air conditioning unit you choose affects how long the installation takes. Split systems are popular in homes across Australia because they can cool or heat single rooms quickly.

They have two main parts: an indoor unit that releases cold or warm air into your room and an outdoor unit that gets rid of heat from inside your home.

I once installed a split system in my own house. First, we had to decide where to put both units to make sure the system worked well and didn’t take up too much space. This choice depends on the layout of your home and where you spend most of your time needing heating or cooling.

Next, let’s talk about what can make installing these systems more complex.

Structural Challenges

Homes and buildings sometimes face tough issues before setting up a new air conditioning system. Walls might need changes or the space outside isn’t ready. These problems can slow down getting your new AC working.

For multi split systems, linking more than one indoor machine means it could take all day to put in place. This is because each connection needs careful planning and setup.

Issues like how complex the AC is, needing extra work done on the house, what you want added to your standard setup, and rules about building can add time too. All these steps help make sure your aircon fits well in your home and works right from the start.

Making these changes helps control the climate in each room better and keeps energy use low.

Size of Your System

The size of your air conditioning system plays a crucial role in installation time. Bigger systems need more work to set up and may take longer. My experience installing a large split system in a two-storey house proved this.

It took extra hours because we had to ensure the unit was perfect for both floors, considering rooms’ heating and cooling needs.

Next comes understanding existing systems’ complexity—things like ducting, insulation, and how your home’s current setup can affect new installations.

Existing Systems Complexity

Complex setups slow things down. If your home already has an air conditioning system, adding a new split system can be tricky. Workers might need to figure out how the old and new systems will work together without causing problems.

This could involve rerouting ducts or making sure the old system won’t overload with the addition of a new one. From my own experience, having a professional check your current setup before starting helps avoid delays.

Next up, we’ll dive into typical installation timeframes for various types of air conditioners.

Typical Installation Timeframes

Installation times can vary widely. For a standard split system, it usually takes about 4 to 8 hours to get everything up and running.

Ducted Systems

Ducted systems need ductwork to send cool air all over the house. It can take 4-6 hours to set up the compressor and fan parts for these heating and cooling setups. These systems are great for climate control in many rooms at once.

They use a central unit connected by ducts hidden in ceilings or floors.

This setup is perfect if you want your whole home at one comfortable temperature. Before moving on, think about how big your home is and where everything will go. Next, we’ll talk about split systems, which work a bit differently.

Split Systems

Installing a split system takes skill and planning. These systems are popular in Australian homes for their efficient cooling and heating. You can expect the installation to be smooth if you have a straightforward setup.

The process involves fitting an indoor unit inside your home and an outdoor compressor outside, which work together to regulate your climate. Each setup has its own needs based on how many rooms you’re trying to heat or cool.

The time needed can vary greatly. A single room might only take a few hours, while larger homes with more units could need a full day or more. The outdoor component should sit in a protected spot, either mounted on brackets against the wall or placed on a solid base on the ground.

This ensures it stays safe from weather damage or interference. Replacing an old system often costs less than putting in a new one since most of the required infrastructure is already there.

Multi Split Systems

Multi split systems are a game changer for homes needing multiple rooms heated or cooled without installing several individual units. These systems connect more than one indoor unit to a single outdoor unit, saving space and energy.

From my personal experience, I found these setups perfect for my house because we could control the temperature in different rooms according to everyone’s comfort level.

Installing multi split systems typically takes a full day, assuming there are no major structural challenges. This timeframe can vary based on the number of indoor units you’re connecting and how complex your existing heating and cooling system is.

Hiring professional installers is key—they ensure everything runs smoothly from start to finish, guaranteeing efficient performance which keeps your home comfortable year-round.

Cost Considerations in Installing a Split System Air Conditioner

Installing a split system air conditioner can cost between $600 and $5500. The price tag depends on several things, including the unit’s size and how complex the job is. If you’re replacing an old cooler, it might be cheaper than putting in a new one from scratch.

Most times, installers will charge an extra $600 to $800 for their work. This does not include any special parts they might need to get the job done.

Before making your choice, think about where to put the air conditioner for best airflow and cooling. A good spot means your machine works less hard and uses less power. Getting advice from professionals helps too; they know how to pick the perfect place for maximum efficiency.

Plan early because these experts are busy, especially when it gets hot!

The Importance of Hiring Professionals

Hiring skilled people to install your air conditioner is a must. It’s against the law to do it yourself in many places. Experts bring tools and know-how that you likely don’t have.

They ensure your unit works well and uses less power. This means cooler rooms without high bills.

I once tried setting up a simple system at home. Quickly, I learned that without the right skills, things can go wrong fast. Professionals saved me time and stress later on by fixing my mistakes and teaching me about maintenance.

They even offer help after they’ve installed everything.

Next, let’s talk about what affects how long it takes to get your new system running.


Figuring out how long it takes to set up a split system isn’t clear-cut. Several factors play a part. From the type of unit, structural hurdles in your home, to how big the system is and what you already have installed – all these affect time.

Generally speaking, setting up can take anywhere from half a day for simple jobs to two full days for more complex ones. Professionals know their stuff, ensuring safe and efficient installation without messing around.

So, if you’re looking at getting cosy with a new heating and cooling setup or just need an upgrade, remember – time varies but picking the right team makes all the difference.

For more detailed insights on pricing, check out our guide on how much it costs to install a split system air conditioner in Australia.


1. What’s a split system, and why should I care?

A split system is your go-to for both heating and cooling your space. It’s an air conditioning unit that can keep you warm in winter and cool in summer. Plus, it’s energy-efficient – saving you money on those bills!

2. How long does installing one of these systems take?

Generally, setting up a new split system takes about 4 to 8 hours. But remember, every home is unique! The time can vary based on how complex your setup is.

3. Can I install a split system by myself?

It might be tempting, but it’s best to leave this job to the pros! Installing involves handling refrigerants and electrical work that require special skills and certifications.

4. Are there different types of split systems?

Yes! From reverse-cycle units for all-year comfort to ducted systems blending seamlessly into your home – there’s plenty to choose from. Brands like LG, Panasonic, and Midea offer various models tailored to your needs.

5. Will my energy bill shoot up after installation?

Not necessarily! Split systems are known for their energy efficiency. Choosing an Energy Star-rated model can help keep costs down while keeping you comfortable.

6. What should I consider before choosing a split system?

Think about the size of the area you need to heat or cool, your budget, and any specific features you want – like humidity control or smart thermostat compatibility.