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How Long Does It Take to Install a New AC Unit

How Long Does It Take to Install a New AC Unit

When the sweltering heat of summer arrives, a reliable air conditioning unit becomes a savior for many. Whether you’re upgrading to a more efficient system or replacing an old one, the installation process is a critical factor in ensuring your home stays cool and comfortable. In this blog post, we’ll explore the various factors that influence the time it takes to install a new AC unit. Discover how long does it take to install a new AC unit in your home! Contact AirOstat, Inc. for expert installation of your AC unit!

How long does it take to install a split-system air conditioner?

An air conditioner system with one outdoor and several indoor units (often two, three, or four) is called a split system. With this system, you can’t select to have some units on and others off because all its units operate simultaneously. You can either have them all on or all off. Depending on the specific layout and level of complexity, it will take approximately 6 to 8 hours to install a split cooling system.

How long does it take for an air conditioner compressor to be installed?

One of the most crucial components of an air conditioner is the compressor, which acts as the system’s beating heart. The compressor circulates the refrigerant, producing cold air.

If, for whatever reason, your air conditioner compressor gives out, you should have it replaced right away if you want to keep your house cool. Installing an air conditioner compressor may take two to four hours. However, if the issue is serious or the AC unit is old, you could need to replace your entire AC system.

Factors Affecting AC Installation Duration

The duration of an air conditioning (AC) installation is influenced by various factors, each playing a crucial role in determining how long the process will take. Understanding these factors can help homeowners and businesses anticipate the timeline for their AC installation project. Here are the key elements that affect the duration of Air conditioner installation:

1. Type and Model of AC Unit

When it comes to installing air conditioning units, the type you choose matters. Central air systems, ductless mini-splits, and window units each come with their own installation complexities.

Additionally, the specific model and features of your chosen AC unit play a role in the installation process. High-efficiency models or units with advanced features often require more time for precise setup. This is because the installation team needs to carefully configure and optimize these systems to ensure they operate at their best capacity. So, whether you opt for a central system with ductwork, a ductless mini-split for targeted cooling, or a convenient window unit, understanding the intricacies of the chosen unit is key to estimating the installation time accurately.

2. Size and Cooling Capacity

Choosing the right size of AC unit plays a pivotal role in determining the complexity and duration of the installation process. Larger units typically demand more extensive installation work due to their increased cooling capacity. This involves not only the physical placement of the unit but also considerations for adapting or expanding existing infrastructure to accommodate the larger system. The intricacies of handling a bulkier and more powerful unit contribute to the overall time required for a successful installation.

Moreover, the cooling capacity of the Air Conditioning system is a critical factor influencing the installation process. It’s imperative that the chosen AC unit is appropriately sized for the specific space it will cool. Undersized units may struggle to meet cooling demands, while oversized units can lead to inefficiencies and unnecessary energy consumption. For larger spaces or multi-zone systems, additional adjustments may be necessary to ensure optimal performance. Addressing the cooling capacity requirements accurately during installation contributes to the long-term efficiency and effectiveness of the AC system in providing comfort to the designated area.

3. Existing Infrastructure

The existing HVAC infrastructure significantly impacts the duration of AC installation. If replacing an old unit with a similar model, the process is often expedited as it leverages existing connections and infrastructure. This approach minimizes the need for extensive modifications, allowing for a more straightforward and quicker installation.

On the other hand, upgrading or modifying the existing HVAC system may extend the installation time. Adjustments to ductwork or electrical systems could be necessary to accommodate the new unit’s specifications. This more involved process ensures that the upgraded system aligns with the property’s evolving needs but requires additional time for meticulous adjustments and enhancements to the existing infrastructure.

4. Ductwork Complexity

Installing central air systems involves the intricate task of setting up ductwork throughout the entire structure. The complexity arises from the need for meticulous planning and precise execution to ensure optimal air distribution. Technicians must calculate and design the duct system, accounting for the layout of the space and strategically placing components. The intricate nature of ductwork installation contributes to an extended overall duration of central air system installations.

In contrast, ductless mini-split systems offer a more straightforward installation process. As the name suggests, these air conditioning systems operate without the need for extensive ductwork. Indoor air handlers are mounted directly on walls, and the connection between the indoor and outdoor units is less complex. This simplicity results in a quicker installation timeline, making ductless mini-splits an efficient choice for those seeking a swift and effective cooling solution without the challenges associated with installing and configuring extensive duct systems.

5. Preparation and Planning

Proper preparation is a cornerstone of efficient AC installation. Ahead of the installation day, conducting thorough site assessments and engaging in discussions with the homeowner are essential steps. These preparations help identify specific requirements, potential challenges, and optimal placement, ultimately streamlining the overall installation process.

Comprehensive planning plays a pivotal role in preventing delays. Ensuring that all required materials, equipment, and tools are readily available is crucial. With a well-prepared plan in place, technicians can seamlessly execute the installation, minimizing interruptions and ensuring a timely and successful completion.

6. Local Codes and Permits

Compliance with local building codes and securing required permits is a crucial prerequisite for any AC installation. The duration of this step is contingent upon the specific regulations of the location, and it involves obtaining necessary permissions to ensure that the installation aligns with local standards.

Prioritizing safety and legal compliance is paramount during the installation process. While adhering to these standards is non-negotiable, it may introduce additional time into the overall project. However, this diligence ensures that the AC unit is installed in a manner that not only meets legal requirements but also guarantees the safety and well-being of the occupants and the property.

7. Professional Expertise

The expertise of the installation team plays a pivotal role in the efficiency of the AC installation. Trained and experienced technicians possess the skills to navigate the complexities of the process, ensuring a smoother and error-free installation. Their proficiency not only minimizes potential errors but also contributes to timely project completion, saving both time and resources.

When hiring an HVAC professional, choosing a reputable service provider is essential. Reputable professionals bring a level of reliability and competence to the installation process. Their commitment to quality workmanship and adherence to industry standards ensures that the installation proceeds seamlessly, ultimately leading to a more timely and successful completion of the AC installation project.

8. Seasonal Considerations

The timing of AC installations is notably influenced by seasonal demand, particularly during peak periods like the scorching summer months. The surge in requests during these times may pose challenges in scheduling, potentially leading to delays in installation timelines as HVAC professionals manage increased service demands. To efficiently manage the growing influx of installation requests, HVAC professionals must carefully schedule an appointment in order to meet the demands of clients while minimizing delays in the installation timeline. 

In summary, the duration of an AC installation is determined by a range of factors, including the type and size of the unit, existing infrastructure, ductwork complexity, and compliance with local regulations, as the average installation can range from a few hours to days if there are issues encountered.  Successful and timely outcomes hinge on careful consideration of these elements by homeowners and businesses, ensuring that they engage with experienced professionals and plan accordingly to navigate potential challenges and streamline the installation process.

How Long Does It Take to Install a New AC Unit In Los Angeles

How Long Does It Take to Replace an Air Conditioner

Replacing an air conditioner is a significant undertaking that involves several steps and considerations. The duration of the replacement process can vary based on factors such as the type of unit being replaced, the existing infrastructure, and the complexity of the installation. Let’s delve into the key aspects that influence how long it takes to replace an air conditioner:

1. Type of Air Conditioner

The type of air conditioner being replaced is a crucial factor. As discussed earlier, central air systems, ductless mini-splits, and window units each have distinct installation processes. The type being replaced will impact the overall replacement time.

2. Preparation and Assessment

Before the actual replacement begins, a thorough assessment of the existing system and the home’s requirements is necessary. This includes inspecting ductwork, electrical connections, and ensuring compatibility with the new unit. Adequate preparation can contribute to a more efficient replacement process.

3. Removal of the Old Unit

The removal of the existing air conditioner is a step that involves disconnecting electrical components, handling refrigerants responsibly, and safely uninstalling the old unit. The complexity of this step depends on the type of air conditioner and the condition of the existing installation.

4. Infrastructure Compatibility

Ensuring that the new air conditioner is compatible with the existing infrastructure is vital. If modifications or upgrades are needed, such as changes to ductwork or electrical systems, this can extend the overall replacement time.

5. Installation of the New Unit

Installing the new air conditioner involves positioning the unit, connecting it to the ductwork or setting up the necessary components, and ensuring proper electrical connections. The complexity of this process varies based on the type of unit being installed and the home’s specifications.

6. Testing and Quality Checks

After installation, thorough testing and quality checks are conducted to ensure the new air conditioner functions correctly. This includes checking for proper airflow, refrigerant levels, and addressing any potential issues. Taking the time to conduct comprehensive testing contributes to the long-term reliability of the system.

7. Compliance with Codes and Regulations

Adhering to local building codes and regulations is essential during the replacement process. Obtaining necessary permits and ensuring compliance with safety standards may add some time to the overall duration of the replacement.

The time it takes to replace an air conditioner is influenced by various factors, including the type of unit, preparation and assessment, removal of the old unit, infrastructure compatibility, installation of the new unit, testing, and compliance with codes. While a straightforward replacement may take a day or less, more complex installations or those requiring infrastructure modifications can extend the timeframe. Consulting with a professional HVAC technician can provide a more accurate estimate based on your specific situation.

What to Expect on the Day of AC Installation

As a customer, you must expect the contractor to care for everything on the day of the AC installation. Most of your labor should consist of clearing the area where the system will be installed and removing personal belongings or anything in the way. The contractor ought to be able to take over from there!

HVAC Professional Preparation

On the installation day, an HVAC professional will arrive at your house to install the AC. They will protect your flooring with drop cloths while assessing the existing setup to determine the most effective removal method.

Wiring and Brazing

After removing the old system, the HVAC professional will connect the new outside unit to the indoor unit, brazing a line set with nitrogen to achieve an airtight seal free of impurities. Wiring is essential for the air conditioner to transition smoothly between heating and cooling and communicate with the thermostat. 

Crawl Spaces and Thermostats

The HVAC professional will also ensure your thermostat works with the new setup. They might need to enter crawl spaces or other difficult-to-reach locations to modify wiring and ductwork.

Air Filter Replacement and Furniture Dismantling

Furniture may occasionally need to be dismantled to provide enough room for the installation. The technician will advise regular air filter changes following installation to preserve system effectiveness and prevent strain on the unit.

Utility Bills, Maintenance, and HVAC Contractors

Make an appointment for yearly maintenance with a professional to keep your HVAC system operating efficiently and prevent excessive utility bills. This will protect your warranty and guarantee the longest possible lifespan and optimal performance from the HVAC system.


To recap, the timeline for installing a new AC unit is contingent on multiple factors, encompassing the unit’s type, size, existing infrastructure, preparation, adherence to local regulations, and the proficiency of the installation team. While furnishing an exact timeframe without detailed information is a challenge, seeking guidance from a skilled HVAC technician is crucial for obtaining a more precise estimate. Strategic planning and enlisting seasoned professionals play a pivotal role in expediting the installation process, guaranteeing that your home remains comfortably cool throughout the sweltering months. Additionally, a comprehensive inspection of wiring, thermostat, condenser, and compressor, coupled with routine maintenance, further enhances the efficiency and longevity of HVAC systems like air conditioners.


Here are some frequently asked questions.

What can cause delays in the installation of a new AC unit?

Unforeseen issues with existing ductwork, electrical complications, or the need for additional modifications can lead to delays. Weather conditions may also play a role, as extreme conditions can impact installation.

Can I get a detailed estimate before the installation?

Yes, requesting a detailed estimate from the HVAC contractor before the installation begins is advisable. It should include the cost of the unit, labor, any necessary modifications, and potential additional charges. A comprehensive estimate helps you plan both financially and logistically.

How many hours per day will the installation team work on my new AC unit?

Installation teams typically work 8 hours a day, but the actual hours can vary depending on the complexity of the installation and unforeseen circumstances. The team will communicate the daily schedule and make any necessary adjustments.

Can the installation process be extended to multiple days?

The process may extend into multiple days, particularly for more extensive or intricate installations. Factors such as the need for additional components, modifications, or adverse weather conditions can contribute to a longer installation duration.

Can the installation of a new condenser unit affect the overall efficiency of my HVAC system?

Yes, the condenser unit plays a crucial role in the efficiency of the entire HVAC system. A properly installed and well-matched condenser contributes to optimal performance. In this case, ensuring compatibility with the existing system and proper sizing is essential for maximizing efficiency.

What things should I consider when choosing between repairing and replacing my AC unit?

Consider the age of the unit, the frequency and cost of recent repairs, energy efficiency, and your long-term plans. If the unit is relatively new, a repair might be more cost-effective. However, if the system is aging and repairs are becoming an issue or problem, investing in a new unit could save money in the long term.

Contact AirOstat, Inc.Today!

Get in touch with AirOstat, Inc. now for top-notch HVAC services in Los AngelesCalifornia! As a leading provider in the industry, our company is well-equipped to assist you with commercial or residential AC installation. With a commitment to excellence, we offer expert solutions to ensure your cooling needs are met efficiently. 

Don’t hesitate – call us today at (844) 247-6782 to schedule an appointment, and let our skilled professionals take care of your HVAC requirements. Enjoy the peace of mind that comes with relying on a trusted partner for all your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning needs.