Complete Guide to Ducted Air Conditioning Installation in Brisbane

Phill Crawley

Smarter Air & Electrical

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Brisbane’s Complete Ducted Air Conditioning Installation Guide

When it comes to choosing the best air con solution for your home in Brisbane or Gold Coast, there are two main options: ducted AC and wall-split air cons. Ducted AC systems are designed to heat or cool your entire home, including all living areas, by distributing air through a network of insulated flexible ducts and grilles. These systems are often equipped with innovative zoning products that allow you to create cool air in different areas of your home depending on the size and layout of your living spaces. Additionally, many ducted AC systems have the ability to run on a smartphone app, which can help you to maximise energy efficiency and suit your needs.

On the other hand, wall-split air conditioners are designed to cool or heat a single room at a time. These systems are best suited to smaller homes or apartments, or to supplement the cooling capacity of a larger ducted AC system. While split AC units are relatively easy to install, they do require an indoor unit to be mounted on the wall in each room, which can be unsightly and may not suit the aesthetic of your home. Ultimately, the best AC system for your home will depend on your specific needs and preferences.

Ducted Air Conditioners

An installer team of 2-4 trained professionals typically installs ducted air conditioning in one day.

Most of the time, the outdoor condenser is put away from the bedrooms so that motor noise won’t be heard inside the house. The ducted AC indoor unit is installed in your ceiling cavity & is made up of a cooling coil and a blower fan to distribute air. The indoor evaporator unit is hung from metal straps or threaded rods in the ceiling cavity. Air ducts are then run to each room, where a discreet ceiling diffuser is fitted into the gyprock or other ceiling material.

To help drain the moisture that is taken out of your home’s air, insulated condensate drain lines are run to your gutter. You can control the whole system with a single controller that is placed in a convenient spot in your home, usually near the kitchen. Some more advanced controllers, such as MyAir by Advantage Air, also allow you to control your air con from your smartphone and set individual room temperatures.

Split System Air Conditioners

A team of two trained professionals can install a split in about 2-3 hours.

The indoor head unit is mounted on an external wall inside the room, with refrigerant pipes, electrical cables, and drains connecting to the compressor unit outside, which is typically located directly behind the indoor unit. The condensate drain line is usually connected to the nearest downpipe, with vent holes cut into the pipe to allow water to escape if the downpipe becomes blocked or backed up. To secure the unit, it is placed on a precast concrete slab or wall brackets.

High-quality air conditioning brands like Panasonic and Mitsubishi Electric provide both budget and premium options with built-in air purification, smartphone control, and advanced motion sensors that detect when you enter the room and adjust the temperature accordingly. Split system installation is best suited when you only need to cool a single room as you only need to switch the system on when the room is occupied without having to cool other rooms too.

Ducted Air Conditioner

Ducted vs Split

Both solutions will require a condenser unit to be placed outside the home; in the case of ducted AC, you will only have one, but with wall splits, you will have one for each room. Most homeowners place the outside unit out of sight, usually down the side of the house with your water heater and other appliances.

Inside the home, a ducted system installation is almost invisible. The only way to tell if it’s there is to look for vents or a thermostat on the wall. Split systems, on the other hand, are easy to locate due to their bulky rectangular indoor unit mounted high on each wall of the home. Some people find it easy to ignore them, while others find them annoying. They could be a hindrance when decorating your home; it all depends on your preferences as a homeowner.

When it comes to cleaning and maintenance, these two systems are worlds apart. With a reverse cycle ducted system, it is recommended that you clean your filters at least once every three months and schedule an annual service every year (The average cost of a detailed inspection or annual service for your ducted air con is normally priced at $399). An air conditioning technician will inspect the system’s performance, refrigerant gas charge, zoning system, and drains for proper operation. It’s also a good idea to inspect the system on your own and listen for any unusual noises so that an expert can inspect it right away when they arrive.

Most people maintain their split system air con by cleaning the filter on a regular basis, your HVAC professional also may recommend that you perform a deep coil clean (The average cost of a service & deep clean for your split air con is $299) at least once a year or two to remove any mould, germs, or bacteria growing inside the unit.

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The Benefits of Choosing a Ducted Air Conditioning System

Using a central AC has several advantages. When it comes to the appearance and feel of your home or business, ducted air is the best option as it provides heating and cooling throughout your entire home. The indoor unit is located inside the roof and provides cooling via low-profile, nearly invisible vents in the ceiling or walls.

Ducted systems are known for their quiet operation because, unlike split systems, the fan is located inside the roof cavity. You can control the mode and temperature of a smart zoning system using a smartphone app. Advantage Air’s MyAir system includes a smartphone app and climate control (sometimes referred to as individual temperature control) for all zones. These climate controlled zones help to reduce your energy consumption & save you money on your power bill.

Because you only need to fit one unit, a whole home ducted system could save you money. It’s not like a split ac system, which requires the installation of multiple units when there are multiple rooms within a given space, resulting in a significant cost increase if you’re trying to heat or cool multiple rooms.

Ducted air systems have become more affordable over time, and many Australians now regard them as a necessity rather than a luxury. This type of air cond will increase the value of your home. If you decide to sell the house, it will undoubtedly impress any potential buyer. Whole-home ducted air can be used to cool an entire house or office, allowing you to quickly warm or cool your indoor space with the click of a single button. You don’t have to enter each room to turn on or off the air conditioner.

Most modern homes opt for ducted air conditioning packages for their simplicity and ease of use. Another significant advantage of this type of air conditioner is its unobtrusive appearance.

Ducted air conditioning uses a network of ducts to circular air throughout the home from a single unit.

How Ducted Air Conditioning Works?

The indoor unit houses an efficient fan and a cooling or heating coil that is linked to the ductwork. When you turn on the system, the HVAC blower fan pulls warm air up through a return air grille to remove any dust from the room and blows it over the cooling or heating coil. Depending on the season, the air is cooled or heated as it passes over the coil before being pushed out of the air mixing plenum. The cooled or heated air is then distributed to the various rooms of the building via vents or outlets via the ducts. The inside unit normally has three fan speeds so you can adjust the airflow as required, lower fan speeds remove more humidity from the air which is great for the steamy Brisbane climate while high fan speed can throw the air further across the room eliminating cool or warm spots.

The outdoor unit houses a compressor that circulates refrigerant gas throughout the system. The refrigerant gas is in charge of transporting heat from inside the building to outside. Depending on the season, the refrigerant gas absorbs or releases heat as it passes through the indoor cooling or heating coil. After that, the refrigerant gas is pumped to the outdoor unit, which is either cooled or heated by the outside air before being returned to the indoor unit to complete the cycle.

A ducted air conditioner circulates cool air or heated air throughout a building using a network of ducts and refrigerant gas to transfer heat. The system maintains a comfortable temperature inside the home all year by controlling the temperature of the indoor unit and the flow of the refrigerant gas.

Ducted Air Conditioner

Ducted Air Conditioning Cost?

Several factors can influence the total cost of ducted air conditioning. To calculate the cost of ducted air conditioning, divide the total cost into three parts: the cost of the ducted air conditioning unit, the cost of ducted air conditioning components such as vents, ducts, and other components, and the cost of installation. All three costs are important if you want a system for your home that is reliable, efficient, and lasts a long time. Indoor and outdoor units, thermostats, ducting and fitting, and, of course, labour are all included in the total cost of the new ducted air system.

The unit is typically one-third of the total cost of the air conditioning solution. The components of a ducted cooling and heating system are just as important as the layout and design of the system. R1.0 flexible ducting, return air box, return air grille, supply & return air plenum on the indoor unit, safety tray drain, refrigeration pipes and the electrical, ceiling or wall vents, outdoor unit mounting gear, diverters and Y pieces to divert air, and zone systems for turning room ACs on and off as needed are among these elements. The cost of the parts makes up one-third of the total cost of the system. If the overall system costs $12,000, the total cost of duct, fittings, and zone controller components will be $4,000. Another factor that is frequently overlooked is the cost of installation labour.

A standard ducted air conditioning installation for an existing home will necessitate 3–4 qualified workers for a full day to carry out the installation process, including a refrigeration mechanic and electrician. Labour costs are typically one-third of total system costs. In short, there are three parts to the $12,000 cost of installing a ducted AC system:

  • $4,000 for AC unit
  • $4,000 for ductwork, fittings, and controls
  • $4,000 for skilled labour

Most larger units above 16kW are unable to run on single phase power and will require you to upgrade your home to three phase power so there may be some electrical work that needs to be done prior to your install; the average cost of a 3-phase upgrade is $2000-$3000 depending on the length of the cable run & if it is overhead or underground.

The brand you select also affects the price, top tier AC brands such as Panasonic, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Electric, Fujitsu and Daikin ducted units are all at the higher end of the price bracket, but the quality is top-notch. Brands such as Samsung, TECO, Rinnai, Hisense & LG come at a lower price point but still provide effective heating and cooling solutions.

Reasons why ducted air conditioning must be done by a professional

Having a central air-con solution added to your home is a complicated job that should only be done by a skilled professional. There are several reasons why it is important to select a professional for the installation of a ducted air conditioner.

It is critical to employ an experienced professional for the installation of such a system due to several reasons.

Compliance with building codes and Australian standards: A professional air conditioning contractor will be familiar with the local building codes and regulations related to the installation of air conditioning systems. They will ensure that the installation complies with these codes and standards, which is important for the safety and integrity of your home or building.

Proper sizing and placement of components: Proper sizing and placement of the various components are essential for optimal performance and energy efficiency. A professional contractor will perform a heat load calculation to determine the correct size of the system and will carefully consider the placement of the indoor and outdoor units to ensure that they function effectively.

Safe handling of refrigerant gas: Refrigerant gas is a hazardous substance that must be handled with caution. A professional air conditioning contractor will be licensed & trained in the proper handling and disposal of refrigerant gas, ensuring that it is not released into the environment and that it is recycled in a safe and responsible manner. We suggest checking that your contractor has an Arctick license suitable for carrying out the proposed works.

Expertise in system design and installation: Installing a ducted air conditioning system involves more than just connecting a few copper pipes and cables. A professional contractor will have the expertise and experience to design a system that is customized to the specific needs of your home and will be able to properly install all of the components to ensure that the system functions efficiently.

Professional warranties and guarantees: A professional air conditioning company will typically offer warranties and guarantees on their work and the equipment they provide such as Smarter Air & Electrical’s 10-Year Workmanship Guarantee. This provides peace of mind and protection in case of any issues with the system.

Hiring a professional for the installation of a ducted air conditioning system is important for compliance with building codes and regulations, proper sizing and placement of components, safe handling of refrigerant gas, expert system design and installation, and professional warranties and guarantees. Trusting a professional for your ducted air conditioner will ensure that the system meets or exceeds Australian standards and provides efficient & reliable performance for years to come.

Our expert installer teams are also equipped with all of the correct tools to minimise mess & do a tidy job such as using drop sheets to catch any plaster dust or sawdust & a vacuum cleaner (don’t tell their partners they know how to use them haha).

quality air conditioning

Essential tips for choosing a reliable ducted air conditioner installation service

There are a few things to keep in mind when you hire a professional air conditioning service. First, choose a quality company with a proven track record (check Google reviews) that has an electrical & artcik license, knows how to optimize the ducted air conditioning system for comfort & efficiency and is up-to-date on the latest technology and methods.

It is important to feel comfortable and trust the company you are working with, so choose one that will make suggestions based on your needs instead of trying to sell you their products or services.

When choosing an air conditioner, you should think about what you need instead of just how much it costs. Set aside money for repairs and maintenance, and choose a system that is the right size for your home and has the highest energy efficiency ratings. Researching different models, designs, and brands can also help you make the best choice for your needs.

Sue Cee
Once again, brilliant customer service from start to end. Professional, courteous, explaining the process as they went along, Jacob and Will were great. I 100% recommend ...
Sue Cee
Once again, brilliant customer service from start to end. Professional, courteous, explaining the process as they went along, Jacob and Will were great. I 100% recommend Smarter Air & Electrical
Sue Cee
Sue Cee
Bhavesh Bhatt
The guys at Smarter Air did very good job at installing ducted system in my already built home. Starting from their Sales team to...
Bhavesh Bhatt
The guys at Smarter Air did very good job at installing ducted system in my already built home. Starting from their Sales team to customer rep to Electrician and installation team all were very professional and helpful. Highly recommended 👍🏼
Bhavesh Bhatt
Bhavesh Bhatt
Giuseppe Amenta
I was nothing but impressed of the leadership and workmanship of smarter air & Electrical crew ( Davis, Benji, Levi, Nav Jake and Will) that came ...
Giuseppe Amenta
I was nothing but impressed of the leadership and workmanship of smarter air & Electrical crew ( Davis, Benji, Levi, Nav Jake and Will) that came out to fit our Panasonic ducted air conditioner.The pre inspection was so important cause they new exactly what they were up for ! Thanks Davis !! The crew did a terrific job , they cleaned after themselves explained what they were doing and most of all respected the household which was very appreciative . We would highly recommend Smarter Air & Electrical to family and friends. Well done !! Thank you
Giuseppe Amenta
Giuseppe Amenta
Mel Daniels
Absolutely fantastic service. The team introduced themselves upon arrival, explained what was going to happen with the install. They cleaned up and show us how ...
Mel Daniels
Absolutely fantastic service. The team introduced themselves upon arrival, explained what was going to happen with the install. They cleaned up and show us how to use everything. Customer service is more 5 stars!
Mel Daniels
Mel Daniels
Larry Hodges
Wow!!! That is what comes to mind for the service, professionalism, and timeliness provided by Smarter Air. Will, Benji, Jack...
Larry Hodges
Wow!!! That is what comes to mind for the service, professionalism, and timeliness provided by Smarter Air. Will, Benji, Jack, Jake, Kesan, and Davis arrive on time, were friendly, and installed aircon. Before leaving they tested system, cleaned up and gave me walk through on system use. I highly recommended Smarter Air. Couldn’t be happier. Larry Hodges.
Larry Hodges
Larry Hodges
Ferdy K
After doing a good research, I found Smart Air Electrical prices the most competitive. The team presented good options depending on my budget so I ...
Ferdy K
After doing a good research, I found Smart Air Electrical prices the most competitive. The team presented good options depending on my budget so I ended up getting the Teco System with a 7 year warranty. The low price range was most attractive. It was also good to get 10% discount as well- so I saved another $900. The crew that installed the AC were very professional. They spent the whole day in my house and were very respectful. I am now enjoying cool air.
Ferdy K
Ferdy K
Andrew Nicholls
Smarter air and electrical did a fantastic job. Pre-sales service was informative and great value. They answered all of our questions and explained each option. ...
Andrew Nicholls
Smarter air and electrical did a fantastic job. Pre-sales service was informative and great value. They answered all of our questions and explained each option. The install was timely booked and the install crew arrived on time. The team was friendly, informative and responsive to our requests. The system was professionally installed and cleaned before a comprehensive run through of its controls and maintenance. Amazing service! Highly recommend.
Andrew Nicholls
Andrew Nicholls
Janelle G
Very organised company, quote for my new ducted air con completed straight away, communication was great throughout whole process, Installation went very smoothly and the ...
Janelle G
Very organised company, quote for my new ducted air con completed straight away, communication was great throughout whole process, Installation went very smoothly and the boys did a great job. Highly recommend!
Janelle G
Janelle G
Athar Ali
We are lucky enough to get our ducted aircon system installed by this company for a newly constructed house. Phil and Davis and their team ...
Athar Ali
We are lucky enough to get our ducted aircon system installed by this company for a newly constructed house. Phil and Davis and their team went above and beyond from pre sales to after sales services. Installation was carried out in the most professional manner and they are always approachable to answer all of your questions. Their knowledge and customer service is exceptional and I highly recommend this company.
Athar Ali
Athar Ali
Des Studdert
Smarter Air and Electrical installed our new Mitsubishi Ducted Air Conditioning system on Monday 27Nov2023. The installation team arrived on time and was led by ...
Des Studdert
Smarter Air and Electrical installed our new Mitsubishi Ducted Air Conditioning system on Monday 27Nov2023. The installation team arrived on time and was led by Tom. We were impressed with the professional approach and the care taken by the Team during the install. All our questions before, during and after the task were easily satisfied by the team. Handover, and brief on the system was pleasant and seamless. Since install the system has functioned very well, is whisper quiet and very effective. Thanks to Tom and his team of technicians for a job well done. Additionally, thank you to the greater Smartair team, Including, Sales, (Alex) Operations, and associated departments (Meg), for all their help and happy assistance. I thoroughly recommend Smartair for all your air conditioning needs. A very pleasant experience. Des and Sabine.
Des Studdert
Des Studdert

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