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Ducted Reverse Cycle Air Conditioning

Ducted reverse cycle air conditioners are designed to heat and cool your entire home. They provide precise climate control and are the ultimate solution for your heating and cooling needs.

Reverse cycle systems also allow for zoning, which means you can adjust the amount of air flow into each room, or even turn rooms off, allowing for greater efficiency and more precise temperature control.

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Who should use a ducted reverse cycle system?

Ducted reverse cycle systems are great for anyone wanting the ability to heat and cool their entire home. They are not intended to be paired with existing ducted systems (eg. gas heating or ducted evaporative systems). In some cases, reverse cycle systems can be paired with wall split systems if there are rooms that are semi-detached or have limited ceiling space.

Ducted reverse cycle systems also require ample ceiling space for the indoor unit and ductwork, and a well ventilated space outside for the outdoor condenser.

Some other things to consider are:

  • The layout of your home: how many levels are there? What are the dimensions of the rooms (including ceiling height)?
  • The size, position and orientation of windows and doors.
  • The type of construction (eg. brick, weatherboard).
  • The amount of insulation in the ceiling, under the floor and in the walls.
  • The number of people living in your home.
  • The main use of each area (for example, sleeping, living, cooking).
  • Large systems might require a three-phase power supply, which will be an extra installation cost if you don't already have it.

What are the upfront and ongoing costs associated with running a ducted reverse cycle system?

To install a ducted reverse cycle system it can cost between $5,000 and $20,000 (or more!) - depending on the size of the system, zoning, outlets, ducting requirements and even smart controllers. When choosing a reverse-cycle system, it’s important to choose a system that has the capacity to effectively do its job, so it’s both energy-efficient and the best value for money.

Running costs of a system vary depending on usage and the space that needs to be heated/cooled. For example, an air conditioner that uses 5kW of electricity would use approximately $1.90/hr based on an electricity rate of $0.38/kWh.

Reducing the cost of running a ducted reverse cycle system

No one wants to spend a small fortune heating and cooling their home, so there are a few ways to reduce your running costs.

Firstly, ask for an inverter system when making your purchase. Inverter systems ramp the fan’s power up and down as required, in response to temperature fluctuations in the room. This type of system will reduce energy usage, as opposed to a system that is constantly operating at full capacity.

Secondly, consider adding zones to your system. This allows you to pick and choose which rooms you want to target, without having to pay to heat/cool the whole house.

Thirdly, as with most things in life, good practice goes a long way. It might seem counter-intuitive, but setting your system to a consistent cooler temperature in winter or warmer temperature in summer means that your air conditioner doesn’t need to work as hard. Another simple practice is closing your blinds and doors to reduce heat absorption on warmer days, and trap in the warm air when it’s cool outside.

Finally, consider adding solar. Installing solar panels can significantly reduce your running power costs, especially in Adelaide’s scorching summers. Using the power generated from your solar system means you won’t need to draw (as much) power from the grid. In some cases you might even get paid for using your A/C if your solar is feeding back into the grid!

Features to consider

  • Zoning
  • Ducting (more on that below)
  • Smart home functionality
  • Noise-efficiency
  • Air distribution (avoiding hot or cold spots in your home)
  • Value for money
  • Aesthetics (you may consider - or require - a different approach to standard ceiling outlets and remotes)

Standard v R1.5 ducting

Ducting is the insulated tubing that carries air from the indoor unit in your roof space to the outlet in each room. Ducting has an insulation rating, which is measured as an ‘R-Value’.

  • R1.0 is cheaper but less efficient
  • R1.5 is more expensive but more efficient
  • R1.5 is required in Climate Zones 4 & 6.

Some of our ducted reverse cycle brands

ActronAir Logo

ActronAir began as a family business in 1984 and has spent almost four decades expanding into a proud Australian company. Designed and manufactured in Australia, ActronAir products are created to combat the harsh Australian climate. They currently cool more than a quarter of a million Aussie homes and businesses.

Explore ActronAir
Daikin Logo

Daikin celebrated their 95th birthday in 2019 and has now marked more than 50 years of service to Australians. They’ve invested heavily in research and development of their technology, claiming over 20,000 patents worldwide.

Explore Daikin
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Logo

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has plenty going for them in the AC game. They’re built on 130 years of history and experience and despite what some may think, they don’t just look after the commercial market. They have a large range of residential products featuring innovative, Japanese-engineered technology.

Explore MHI
Fujitsu Logo

Fujitsu’s mission to be ‘Australia’s favourite air’ means they work hard to deliver superior service and produce quality products. Their air conditioners boast a range of intelligent features including room sensing and timers, but without losing sight of their ultimate goal – effective cooling.

Explore Fujitsu
LG Logo

LG is not only one of the biggest electronics manufacturers in South Korea, they’re one of the biggest in the world. As a well-known brand, they know what customers are looking for in an air conditioner and they certainly deliver.

Explore LG
Panasonic Logo

A giant in the appliance world, Panasonic has spent plenty of time and energy making their air conditioners the best they can be. With a focus on reliability, quality and intelligent features, Panasonic is sure to have a unit that works for you.

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Samsung Logo

Samsung is a globally-renowned brand, which means we’ve got pretty high expectations. While being a competitively priced AC unit, they certainly do pack a punch. Plus, their optional smartphone compatibility means operating their systems is a breeze.

Explore Samsung