How Much Does It Cost to Add a Mini Split?

The cost to add a mini split system can vary widely depending on the type of unit, the number of zones, and the cost of labor in your area. On average, the national cost for a mini split install is between $1200-$1500. This includes the cost of the unit itself, which can range from $400-$1500 per unit for wall-mounted, floor-mounted, ceiling-mounted, or recessed ceiling cassette units.

Understanding Mini Split System Costs

Unit Costs

The cost of the mini split unit itself is the primary driver of the overall installation cost. Wall-mounted units are typically the most affordable, ranging from $400 to $1,000 on average. Floor-mounted and ceiling-mounted units tend to be more expensive, costing between $800 and $1,500 on average. Recessed ceiling cassette units are the most expensive, often ranging from $1,000 to $1,500 per unit.

The size of the unit also affects the cost, with larger units costing more. For example, a 12,000 BTU wall-mounted unit can cost between $775 and $2,000 to install, while a 24,000 BTU floor-mounted unit can cost between $1,675 and $5,000 to install.

Labor Costs

The labor costs involved in a licensed installation of a mini split system can be difficult to estimate precisely. Basic installation for a single unit takes, on average, 6-10 hours, and HVAC technicians charge, on average, between $100 and $150 per hour. This means the labor cost for a single-unit installation can range from $600 to $1,500.

However, additional electrical or carpentry work can add to the costs. For example, you may need an electrician to upgrade your breaker box so that it can handle the additional load, which can add between $75 and $100 per labor hour plus materials.

Multi-Zone Systems

If you’re installing more than one mini split unit, costs will increase. For a four-zone mini split unit, expect to pay between $4,100 and $11,000. The additional units, refrigerant lines, and increased labor time all contribute to the higher cost.

Comparing Mini Split and Central Air Costs

how much does it cost to add a mini splitImage source: Flickr

In general, it is almost always cheaper to install a mini split unit than it is to install central air. The national average for central AC is between $5,800 and $14,400, while a mini split unit can cost between $1200 and $1500 to install.

The cost savings of a mini split system can be significant, especially if you only need to cool or heat specific areas of your home. Mini splits allow you to target specific zones, rather than cooling or heating your entire home, which can be more energy-efficient and cost-effective.

Factors Affecting Mini Split Installation Costs

Several factors can affect the overall cost of a mini split installation, including:

  1. Number of Zones: The more zones you need to cool or heat, the higher the overall cost will be.
  2. Unit Size: Larger units with higher BTU ratings will cost more than smaller units.
  3. Electrical Upgrades: If your home’s electrical system needs to be upgraded to handle the additional load, this can add significant costs.
  4. Structural Modifications: If the installation requires any structural modifications, such as cutting holes in walls or ceilings, this can increase the labor costs.
  5. Location: The cost of labor and materials can vary significantly depending on your geographic location.
  6. Accessibility: If the installation location is difficult to access, this can also increase the labor costs.


The cost to add a mini split system can vary widely, but on average, the national cost for a mini split install is between $1200-$1500. This includes the cost of the unit itself, which can range from $400-$1500 per unit, and the labor costs, which can range from $600 to $1,500 for a single-unit installation. By understanding the factors that can affect the overall cost, you can better plan and budget for your mini split installation project.