How much is air conditioning? It’s a very fair question and quite understandable why people ask it. Especially when it’s 32°C outside, unbearably hot in the home & office, and you just want to get cool!
And similarly when it’s freezing cold in winter, your air con can have you toasty warm in minutes.
Obviously the answer can vary dramatically. It’s a bit like asking how much is a car? You can get a second hand banger that will get you from A to B for £500. On the other hand you can spend £3.5m more on a Lamborghini which will also get you from the same A to the same B.
- Do they both do what we wanted them to? – Yes.
- Are they similar? – No.
- Is one quicker than the other? – Yes.
- Can everyone afford both? – No.
- Is one more reliable than the other? – Yes.
- Do they have the same running costs? – No.
- Will one last longer than the other? – Yes.
- Do they both come with the same guarantee? – No.
- Is one more stylish than the other? – Yes.
- Etc, etc.
A list of questions that you could similarly apply to 2 different air conditioning systems. I think you get my drift!
That being said, I’ll endeavour to answer the burning question “How much is air conditioning?”
Firstly, some factors to take in to consideration that affect the cost:
- The size & location of the space that needs air conditioning.
- The type of space needs air conditioning.
- The fabric of the building.
- The amount of windows.
- The number of people using the space.
- The amount of computers, printers, kettles etc in the space.
- The distance between the indoor & outdoor units.
- The heights of the units.
- The available access & space for the units.
- The level of vandalism protection required.
- The type of drainage required.
- The type of controls required.
- Bluetooth & WiFi compatibility.
- Colour & style.
These factors are relevant for comfort cooling in a domestic or small office environment. For very large areas, close control temperature applications and larger commercial & industrial critical cooling processes, there are many more factors to take in to consideration.
That’s why we like to meet clients to get this important & relevant information. It is all vital in giving you the client an accurate, honest and competitive quote.
But if it helps give you an idea, the bit you’ve been waiting for…
How much is air conditioning?
A basic wall mounted system up to 2.5kW with a back to back pipe run and simple brackets can start around £895. This is suitable for a static caravan. For a small room in a house or a very small server room the cost would be around £1200.
A similar system up to 2.5kW with a longer & more complex pipe run and pumped drainage can start around £1350.
Upgrading the same system above to a more stylish unit with WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth control options, motion sensing, a choice of colours and finishes and an additional touch screen controller on the wall could put the cost over £2000.
Increasing the size of the space being cooled or any of the many factors that increase the amount of cooling required, increases the capacity of the air conditioning system required.
Wall mounted systems like those pictured above usually range from 2.5kW up to 8kW. Systems of 9kW – 10kW+ are available but are uncommon in this style of air conditioner.
As the capacity of the system required increases, so does the cost.
And it’s not just the units that get bigger, the pipe work and associated containment increases in size, the drainage may need upgrading and the power required increases so cables get bigger too.
When we get in to the bigger capacity systems of 4, 5 & 6kW etc, these are usually big enough to serve small offices, any room in your average house, a small restaurant or server room etc. Systems like this can cost around £1600 – £3500.
A Pair of 7kW units like these serving a fairly large open plan restaurant area can cost around £4000 – £6000.
Similar arrangements to this are used in larger server rooms. Where cooling is critical, companies often employ 100% back up redundancy. This means that one of the units is big enough to satisfy the cooling needs of the server room, but if that unit breaks down, there is another unit immediately ready to carry on the cooling without interruption.
Systems like that may run off a central changeover panel. These alternate which unit runs on a weekly basis to even out their run time & use. The panel will also start the standby system up if for any reason the running system fails. In rare situations of extreme heat load or particularly hot weather, the control panel will run both systems at the same time to double the cooling capacity and ensure the room is kept perfectly to its set temperature. Adding a sophisticated control panel to a system can add between £500 – £2500+ depending on size and complexity.
Once we get in to double figure kilowatt requirements, a combination of 2 or more wall mounted units can be used, or we can look at the option of a ceiling mounted cassette system.
A single 5-6kW compact ceiling cassette system is going to cost from approximately £2000 upwards.
When we get to the larger standard ceiling cassettes and capacities of 10kW+, these systems are capable of cooling much larger spaces. Open offices, restaurants, gyms, bigger server rooms etc. The simplest systems could start as low as £3000.
A system combining multiple cassette units can service much larger areas.
The system above consisted of 3 x 12.50kW units and kept a small supermarket comfortably cool in summer and warm in the winter. Systems like this can be installed from £9000.
As system capacity requirements start to grow beyond 3 or 4 units or 40+ kW of cooling, other options become available.
VRF (Variable Refrigerant Flow) or VRV (Daikin’s Variable Refrigerant Volume) Systems allow large combinations of multiple types of indoor units to be run off 1 large outdoor condenser.
Combinations of VRF systems can be used to service very large buildings over numerous floors.
Due to the ultimate flexibility in the size of these systems, prices can start in the low £Tens of Thousands in to the high £Hundreds of Thousands.
Another option, capable of serving both small and large installations alike, is a ducted system. Ducted systems are mainly installed during a building’s construction. Due to the size of the ducting they can be problematic to install in some existing buildings without open ceilings.
In open ceilings, ducted systems can have an appealing ‘industrial’ look. Often exploited in new office spaces and chic bars & restaurants.
Ducted system costs can range hugely. A small system supplying 2 small vents in a small room could cost as little as £2,500. The air conditioning ducting on one new concourse of Dubai airport was £Several Million!
So we hope that helps a little in answering the question “How Much Is Air Conditioning?”
If your budget falls between £895 & £1,000,000+ then we can probably find a solution for you!
Remember – Quotes are FREE and carry no obligation. If you want an accurate quote; just give us a ring.