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How Much Does It Cost To Install A Ductless Mini Split Ac System?

Typical Range: $2,000 - $14,500

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Updated: September 14, 2021

Reviewed by Cati O'Keefe, Expert Home Building & Sustainability Contributor.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Ductless Air Conditioner Installation Cost

A ductless mini split air conditioning system costs $2,000 to $14,500 with an average of $3,000 for a 12,000 BTU system. A one-ton unit with one outdoor and one indoor component at 21 SEER rating runs $1,300 to $5,000 depending on the brand, type of indoor mount and complexity of the installation.

1. Average Ductless AC Installation Costs

Average Cost*$4,000
High Cost*$14,500
Low Cost*$2,000

*For a 12,000 BTU system.

Your final cost will vary based on some additional factors including:

  • Number of zones required
  • The brand you choose
  • SEER rating
  • Local labor rates

2. Mini Split System Cost

Mini split Ductless Air Conditioning Component Prices
Outdoor Unit$1,000 - $6,000
Indoor Wall Mount$400 - $1,000
Indoor Ceiling Mount$700 - $2,000
Indoor Ceiling Cassette*$500 - $2,000
Installation Accessory Kit
(lines, wires, sleeves, box and drain tubes)
$300 - $500
Refrigerant Lines$5 per foot

*Indoor ceiling cassettes are recess mounted units that fit flush with the ceiling. Much like recessed lighting, they fit between ceiling joists.

The system is composed of three parts:

  • Outdoor condenser unit: This sits on a small concrete pad next to your house and moves hot air outside of your house.
  • Indoor air handling units: These mount to the wall or ceiling and cool the air inside your home. Most installs use between one and five units.
  • Refrigerant coolant lines: Refrigerant lines connect the indoor and outdoor units through a small three-inch hole in the wall.
Consult an AC Professional for Installation

3. Mini Split Cost by Units or Zones

ZonesTypical Cost
1$2,000 - $8,800
2$2,700 - $11,100
3$3,400 - $13,400
4$4,100 - $15,700
5$4,800 - $18,000

4. Ductless AC Prices by Brand

Ductless AC Brand Costs
Mitsubishi$1,200 - $8,6501-8 zone options
Daikin$1,000 - $1,700Budget models
Single zone
Panasonic$1,700 - $2,800Single zone
Frigidaire$1,000 - $1,400Single zone

"The Mitsubishi MR SLIM, as an example, has a ceiling cassette that creates an airflow that gradually mixes conditioned air with the air below to avoid drafts. In addition, the product has eight sensors that calculate the number of people in the room and their locations to provide the right amount of air in targeted areas."Cati O'Keefe, Expert Home Building & Sustainability Contributor.

Fujitsu, LG, Amana, Bosch, Carrier and other major brands sell a mini split heat pump unit that both heats and cools for much less than a traditional heat pump costs. Read our guide on ductless heat pump system costs for in-depth information.

5. Labor Cost to Install a Mini Split System

Professional HVAC installation runs $300 to $1,500. A typical installation will cost around $500. Each additional indoor unit can increase labor rates by an additional $300 to $1,000. Each unit requires electrical and refrigerant lines run inside conduit attached to the exterior wall of the home.

Labor costs vary by your location. Always get at least three quotes. The location of the indoor units and accessibility can affect labor times. It takes about 5 to 10 hours of labor to install a single or double zone system. You may also need an electrician and carpenter.

  • Electrician: $50-$100 per hour. $200-$500 total. If you don't have a dedicated 110-, 220-, or 240-volt circuit with a box for the outdoor unit to hook up to, you'll need to get one installed.
  • Carpenter: $25-$50 per hour plus trip fees. $200-$300 total. Siding that is hard to work with like stucco, cement board and logs may require a carpenter to cut and finish the 3 inch hole necessary for line pass through.
Get a Call From an HVAC Pro Today

6. Ductless Air Conditioning vs. Central Air

the cost to install a ductless mini split ac is $4,000 or $2,000 to $14,500.

Installing central AC costs an average of $5,700. Ductless air conditioning costs up to 50% less but it may not always be the best choice:


  • Extremely flexible option for remodels and older homes without ducts.
  • Great at cooling problem areas when used in conjunction with a central air system.
  • Models are available with up to a 38 SEER rating.
  • Flexible placement options.
  • No major construction needed.
  • Does not require annual duct cleaning
  • Typically anywhere from 20% to 60% more efficient than central air.

Central Air:

  • Often more economical if you already have ductwork installed.
  • More efficient choice for larger homes.
  • Provides more even cooling.
  • Whole-house humidifiers are available as an add-on.
  • Air filtration options are available.
  • Invisible once installed.

When deciding between central air and a ductless system, compare features, because many new technologies are now on the market.

7. FAQs

a. Can I install a mini split myself?

While it is possible to install a mini split ductless system yourself, it's best to hire an HVAC installer. Professionals can determine the exact cooling needs of your home, which could ultimately save you money on the project. Even if you plan to install your own, talk to a mini split dealer to get the exact sizing requirements for your home.

b. How many square feet does a mini split cool?

The coverage of your mini split depends on the unit's BTUs but for a rough estimate, calculate about 42 to 58 square feet per 1,000 BTUs. An HVAC pro can conduct a heat load calculation to determine more accurate requirements for your home.

Hire an HVAC Pro to Install a Ductless AC
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