Window AC vs Split AC: Which Air Conditioner Is Best? (Updated 2020)

Wondering what is the difference between split and window AC? Read this article to find out.

Gone are the days when it was unchallenging to survive without an air conditioner.

At present, a home without an air conditioner is like a body without a soul. With the kick-off, time summer has been a torment and so is to stay without an air conditioner.

Another complicated question remains in the selection of air conditioner whether windows or split.

Split AC vs Window AC is one of the prominent debates witnessed in almost a decade.

Ultimately, it is not about window or split AC but various factors are needed to be considered while purchasing an air conditioner.

Window AC vs Split AC: Which Air Conditioner Is Best?

Beyond question, the air conditioner is a luxury item that provides relief from the killer summer but at the cost of massive electricity bills. 

In simple words, it is a machine that has the tendency to control the temperature and provide a cooling impact.

Therefore, the selection of a window or split AC needs to be done after a complete assessment of the pros and cons.

Windows and split air conditioner works on the same mechanism. Sound perfect!

However, there are features such as appearance, installation, maintenance, installation, cooling impact, etc that differ.

The windows and split air conditioner works on the same principle but vary in their nature of air conditioning. 

Now the question arises which air conditioner should you buy for home?  

It is therefore imperative that the difference between the two should be known. Let's shed light on the difference between the two.

Window AC vs Split AC

Split AC vs Window AC has been the major cause of debate and continues to be so. 

This has often lead to vague decisions by the customers. However, what matters is the Energy Efficiency Ratio that projects the ratio of the cooling capacity to the power units?

The efficiency of the air conditioner is determined by the EER rating as it projects the efficiency. So, while purchasing an air conditioner look for the Energy Star level or star level.

Windows and split air conditioner both contain a higher EER ratio, however, split contains a different variety of models as compared to the windows air conditioner. 

Thereby, if you are particularly looking for an energy-efficient model then split air conditioner can be defined as the best option for you.

Other prominent difference window AC and Split AC is that window air conditioner comprises of a single unit while split comprises of 2 units

Split operates in silence as compared to windows and looks more decorative. The other noteworthy difference is installation.

Split air conditioner installation process is cumbersome and requires more space as compared to a window air conditioner.

Looks & Design

As it is correctly remarked that. ‘A room should never allow the eye to settle in one place’.

The decoration of the room or office is of immense importance and hence, while selecting an air conditioner the design must be given priority.

If a small space is available then the windows air conditioner needs to be selected while for a bigger space the split conditioner will fit in.

  • Window air conditioner: A window air conditioner is a single piece box compact in nature and comprises of all the elements such as condenser, compressor, cooling coil, etc
  • Split air conditioner: Split air conditioner comprises of two parts that are the indoor and the output unit. The outdoor unit contains the compressor, condenser, and the expansion valve. On the contrary, the indoor unit consists of an expansion element and the cooling fan.


Installation is another factor that influences the buying decision. The installation of air conditioner attracts costs and hence, as per the budget the selection should be made.

  • Window air conditioner: It is easy to install and does not require expertise while installation. Easy to fit in the desired space and start using it.
  • Split air conditioner: It requires special skills owing to the indoor and outdoor unit. Hence, the skilled worker is needed for the installation. Moreover, reasonable installation charges are needed to be paid.


The major question that arises before the selection of an air conditioner is the requirement of capacity.

A room smaller size room cannot withstand the cooling effect of 2.5 ton while for a large room; an air conditioner of 1 ton will fall flat.

Thereby, the capacity of the air conditioner must align with the room size.

  • Window air conditioner: The window air conditioner comes in the range of 0.75 to 2.5 tons. Hence, the windows air conditioner is more attributed to providing a cooling effect to smaller units
  • Split air conditioner: It is present in the range between 0.8 ton to 3 ton. This implies split air conditioner can cool larger areas.

Maintenance or Servicing

Maintenance and servicing are part and parcel of the air conditioner because effective operation entirely resides upon it.

Buying a device is no big game however its maintenance that plays a predominant part. Any negligence will lead to a reduction in cooling.

It is imperative that before the onset of summer, a complete cleaning is needed to be done to ensure uninterrupted service.

  • Window air conditioner: Servicing a window air conditioner is relatively easy because all the parts are located in the same place. The presence of a single unit helps to trace the problem and provide easy service.
  • Split air conditioner: Split air conditioner needs a technical person because two units are present. Maintenance or servicing activity consumes time because at times the outdoor unit is not easily assessable.

Cost and electricity consumption

Though the split air conditioner consumes a little higher electricity but the power consumption difference between window AC and split AC is so negligible that it will not have an impact on the buying decision.

  • Window air conditioner: Windows air conditioners are relatively cheaper as compared to the split air conditioner. The price of the windows air conditioner is cheaper as there is a single unit.
  • Split air conditioner: The cost of a split air conditioner is more as compared to windows even if it has the same capacity. Two units need to be installed that is the indoor and the outdoor unit.

Cooling Impact

Talking about cooling effect, one difference between split AC and window AC is that windows air conditioner can cool the room faster than the entire home.

If the cooling is needed in a particular area or room then the window air conditioner is helpful and is less expensive as compared to a split air conditioner. 

However, in terms of efficiency, it ranks lower than the split air conditioner.

The energy-saving guide is readily available and must be considered before selecting a particular air conditioner. The split air conditioner is well suited for big rooms and other big areas.

The window air conditioner is movable owing to the portability factor.

However, a split air conditioner is not portable in nature and is difficult to move from one place to another.

Requirement of Space

  • Window air conditioner: Windows air conditioner needs more space as compared to a split air conditioner. The installation is done in the window and hence, becomes a blockage to the daylight and leads to threat too.
  • Split air conditioner: It requires less space in contrast to the window air conditioner. The indoor unit is mounted inside while the outdoor unit is mounted outside the building.


As per the study conducted on window AC vs Split AC, it can be stated that both the air conditioner has similarities between them, however, they differ in their presentation, cooling capacity and cost.

Before going for window or split AC it is important to understand the requirement in terms of room size, the cooling requirement and the maintenance involved in it.

Not to ignore, the budget always remains a top consideration.

Going by the present scenario, it is noted that windows air conditioners are becoming slightly out of touch owing to noise, blockage of space, low energy efficiency, inefficiency in cooling bigger rooms, etc.

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