How to choose between an HVAC packaged unit and a split system.

The abbreviation HVAC refers to heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. You may find HVAC systems anywhere, from single-family houses to submarines. Residential and commercial use buildings can receive heating and cooling from this system. These systems pull clean air from the outdoors and use it to maintain a high level of air quality within the building.

There are two distinct kinds of systems, the packaged unit and split system, and both of them have several advantages that are unique to themselves. The primary distinctions between them are in their configurations and performance levels. However, in the end, they both accomplish the same goal: to heat or cool your house.

Comparison between an HVAC packaged unit and a split system.


Because all of the components are packaged in a single cabinet, packaged units have a tiny footprint, making them an excellent choice for applications with restricted space. They are also not required to have interior components, which saves space within the home or structure they are installed in. Installation of a split system requires room both within and outside of the home.


If you’re looking to spare money on your energy bill, you should look into split systems rather than packaged units because they have better SEER ratings. The seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) ratings for split central air conditioners range from 13 to 23; however, the SEER values for packaged units only go from 10 to 18.


The installation of packaged units is often less expensive. Compared to a split system, a packed unit requires far less labor to install because its components are located in the same location. Additionally, packaged cooling systems can arrive pre-charged with the necessary refrigerant, which reduces the cost of having to charge the system once it has been installed.

Split cooling systems, which have superior energy efficiency ratings, will have lower continuing operational costs. Because packaged units use more electricity, it will be more expensive to cool a home or business with this kind of central air conditioner than using a standard unit.


The packed unit is an all-in-one system that works well in locations that do not have crawlspaces. On the other hand, the split system has separate components and is better suited for locations with greater interior space. Either one of these options could be the best fit for you, depending on the style of residence that you already reside in.

Every unit experiences both successes and failures. It is essential to select one that is ideally suited to your requirements, which may include the dimensions of your house and the kinds of climate conditions that are typical in your area.

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Do, Huyen, and Kristen S. Cetin. “Data-Driven evaluation of residential hvac system efficiency using energy and environmental data.” Energies 12.1 (2019): 188.