How much do Air Conditioners Cost?

See how much a new air conditioning system might set you back with our handy UK cost guide.

Although they are often seen as only belonging in American homes because of the UK’s relatively mild climate, air conditioning units – informally known in the industry as ‘air con’ or ‘ac’ – are becoming an increasingly popular choice for home-owners throughout the country. So why should you get one installed in your home?

air conditioners cost

Fitted and fully installed air conditioning systems are designed to remove moist, warm air from any room in the home. Air con units (via a cooling, internally fitted evaporating coil) can transform that heat into colder, lighter air that is then re-circulated throughout the property or designated space. This means that you don’t have to open windows every time you want a blast of fresh air – which also helps keep unwanted bugs and insects at bay! Plus it means you can adjust your homes temperature not just in the summer, but all year round. Finally, you will get better results compared to a simple ceiling fan, especially during heat waves. Air conditioning will help you and your family to relax and keep comfortable whatever the weather is like outside!

So air conditioning definitely seems like a great idea – but exactly how much does it cost?

Air Conditioners Cost Guide

To help you figure out what type of air conditioning model is right for you, we split our cost and price guide according to the makes that are most commonly available on the UK market:

  • Cost of Portable Units– portable units come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and are usually designed as ‘plug-in’ models for single use in one particular room. They are the cheapest kind of air conditioning unit, often coming in at £70-500. They are easy to install but not as effective at cooler as split systems.
  • Split Systems Cost – a split system is where you use air conditioning as an alternative to an open window, and fit the AC unit to the exterior of the property for wider access to cooler air. They are quieter than portable units however they are also tricky to install – especially for second storey rooms. But they are also quite cheap, usually around £400-900 for complete installation.
  • AC Unit Cost – An air con system advertised as an ‘AC Unit’ usually refers to a fitted, thin strip of plastic that is attached to a wall in a single room. It then draws in cold air from the outside of the property and transfers it to your home by removing the warm air inside. These units vary in price depending on the size and make of the model, but can usually be installed for as little as £450-1500.
  • Price of Window Units – a window AC unit is often attached to a portion of the glass itself (usually at the top or the bottom), reducing the need for extensive installation work. That said, they are a tad more than traditional AC units, costing around £500-1700 to install.
  • Central Systems Cost – for more extensive air con around your property you might want to opt for a central system; that is, a bulky air conditioning unit installed on the exterior of your property that is hooked up to a number of rooms (via either internal or external pipes) across your home. This means you have wider access to air conditioning, but that is a luxury that will also cost you. Central systems can cost as much as £3000 – 7500.
  • HVAC Installation Cost – If you want the most luxurious air con system available, then HVAC (or Heating Ventilation and Cooling) systems are your answer. They maximise your energy efficiency by combining your central heating system with your air con system. This allows you to adjust your homes temperature and moisture levels to an exact amount not available with simple AC and/or portable units. As a result, they are as expensive as you might expect. Usually somewhere between £6000 – 15,000, depending on the scale of installation work involved.

Here are few photos to help you with the different models of air conditioning units:

air conditioning portable unit air conditioning split unit window air conditioning unit air conditioning central system
air conditioning portable unit air conditioning split unit window air conditioning unit air conditioning central sytem

Air conditioners extra features

When buying an air conditioning unit, here are the most interesting extra features to consider:

  1. Remote control: ideal if you want to control your ac unit remotely, from your sofa or bed (a must indeed nowadays!)
  2. Timer options: you can program your air conditioner to switch on and off automatically at a specific time every day. Good to save energy when you are not at home.
  3. Night mode: this mode will reduce noise as much as possible with ac compressor running slower, the best solution to sleep in a very quiet environment.
  4. Occupancy sensor controller: this feature doixist on high-end air con units, it will turn-off the air when no one is in the room and turn it back as soon as it detects a presence.
  5. Smart ac control via mobile application: if you like technology, you can add a smart air con controller and install an application on your smartphone. Thencanwill pre-cool your preferred temperature before you get home based on your dynamic geolocation! You can check this specialised company called Tado smart AC control if you want to read more information.

It is worth noting that while these figures can help you formulate some kind of preliminary budget, your final air con price will also depend on the size of your home and how many extras you want added to your final system!

If your already own an air conditioning unit or system, feel free to check our guide to hire conditioning repairs professionnals.