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How Much Does It Cost To Install Air Conditioner In GTA?

2020-06-06 |     Kevin C

Typically, homeowners spend the cost between $1,800 and $4,600 to install a central air conditioner system in Toronto. Many different factors can impact the final cost you spend to install a new central air conditioner system in your home, or to replace your old central air conditioner unit, including:

  • Central air conditioner brand( Below will provide the 2021 chart for the price range in the different               brands): Like cars or clothing, some brands always cost more than others.

  • Central air conditioner model: Every air conditioner manufacturer offers a series of models from less expensive/lower cost/less-efficient entry-level models, to higher-end/higher cost/more energy-efficient central air conditioners with more features, quieter operation system, better working performance, and so on.

  • Central air conditioner size: Each central air conditioner model will also come in a range of sizes to better suit different homes. The larger space and the more square footage that needed the cooling, the larger and more expensive the air conditioner unit will need to be installed

Installation job site condition and requirements: 1Every home/installation job site is different, so things like where exactly the unit will be installed on the outside, what type of additional labor might be required to complete the installation that leads to higher cost, how old your current ductwork system and furnace/heating system are, whether any safety upgrades must be made to meet building codes from the City of Toronto, and other installation job site factors can affect the air conditioner system installation cost. Also, the professional’s inspection result and the rate of installation will also affect the cost of your central air conditioner system installation. Besides, for a non-forced air system where the additional ductwork system installation is needed, your total cost can go up to $7,800 while the cost of one in a forced-air system installation can be only half of the price.

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2021 central air conditioner prices in Toronto by brand/manufacturer

Please be noted that these prices are general estimates including installation and will vary significantly by areas you live, the  HVAC company or contractor you deal with, and other factors like the complexity and requirement of the installation job site  and of course the specific model and size you choose.

In this article, we will compare the most popular 10 central air conditioner manufacturers in Canada, and we’ve categorized them into three different tiers in terms of pricing, all based on average cost for their products across Toronto. Please be also noted that these tiers are not necessarily meant to represent differences in quality, but rather the relative average costs of the central air conditioner unit.

Furthermore, every brand always has a range of products line with lower-cost and higher-end models as mentioned earlier in this article.


The three tiers are defined as follows:

  • Economy/Entry level Tier: These brands offer central air conditioner products at a price point that usually costs slightly less than the average to install

  • Mid-range: These make up some of the bulk of the popular/well-known air conditioner brands in the market and most of their products fall in the middle range in terms of the cost to install

  • Premium: These two brands market themselves as being air conditioner market leaders, and their prices often reflect this. You can expect to pay at least a few hundred dollars more for the premium brand units to have them installed in your home

Central air conditioner average installation cost based on areas in Ontario:

Toronto – $1900 – $3500

Barrie – $2500 – $3800

Brampton – $1800 – $3500

Belleville/Kingston – $2800 – $3800

Guelph – $2500 – $3500

Hamilton – $2500 – $3800

Kitchener – $2500 – $3800

London – $2800 – $3800

Mississauga – $2000 – $3500

Northern Ontario – $2800 – $3800

Western Ontario – $2700 – $3800

Ottawa – $2800 – $3800

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Central air conditioner replacement cost Vs brand new central air conditioner system installation

Please note that the final cost may also differ slightly if you are simply upgrading or swapping out an old central air conditioner unit VS installation of the system where there was none previously. Because to install a new central air conditioner system, there can be additional labor required to drill holes, run copper lines, and install electrical wiring when it is an installation job site on a brand new central air conditioner system for the first-ever time. On the other hand, when replacing an existing central air conditioner unit installation job site, other factors must also be considered as the age and condition of the previous unit and what upgrades or installation must be made to meet the new safety codes. Those will all affect the cost of purchasing a new central air conditioner unit.

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Different type of central air conditioner system replacement cost in Toronto

In Toronto, the average cost to replace/install a central air conditioner is $2,783. As mentioned earlier in this article, a central air conditioner replacement/installation cost depends on if your house has an existing ductwork system that is in place or not, and what make and model of the unit will be installed, and the size of the air conditioner unit in tons, etc. To install a window central air conditioner system, you can expect to cost around $350-$650, to install a ductless mini-split system can cost $3,285 on average, while a whole-house central air conditioner system installation can cost around $2846.

The exact cost to install a central air conditioner system in your home can’t be determined without a Professional HVAC contractor coming to your home and giving an inspection on the heating system and the existing ductwork system. As the same as any home improvement project, many variables can affect the cost to install a central air conditioner system.

  • Install a central air conditioner unit to the existing forced-air furnace – Almost every new home comes with the central forced-air system installed already, and sometimes you may need to replace both at the same time especially in some older homes. Recommended if your furnace unit and air conditioner unit are over 15 years old. The cost to replace/install is between $2500-$3500/Unit on average in Toronto. This cost will include installing the remote condenser unit and pad, install evaporate coils, coil cabinet unit, refrigeration copper tubing, a new thermostat, electric wiring, and any electrical connection that need to be installed.

  • Install by using the existing ductwork – To install a central air conditioning unit to your existing heating system by using the existing ductwork system, it may cost about $2,300–$4,600 for the whole installation work.

  • Installing new ductwork – To replace your existing central air conditioner unit but need to install new ductwork, it should cost between $5,500 and $7,800 for the whole installation work.

  • Central window, portable, or ductless mini-split options – If your budget doesn’t allow you to install a whole-house central air conditioner, other options can be to install single window units or in-room portable units in the cost between $250–$750 or to install ductless mini-split air conditioner units in the cost between $3,500–$6,500, but these units might not be powerful enough for some large rooms.

Central air conditioner ownership costs in Toronto

“What kind of ongoing costs do I expect after I purchase my central air conditioner unit?”

Once you’ve paid for the initial cost of purchasing and installing a new, high-efficiency central air conditioner unit, you should also set aside a room in your budget for occasional maintenance. Most homeowners in Toronto can expect to cost no more than $300-500/year on average in terms of maintaining their new high-efficiency central air conditioner unit + electricity usage to run their central air conditioner units in summer. In addition, you’ll obviously have to consider the added electricity costs which will be covered in the next section of this article

“What is the average yearly cost of owning an air conditioner unit?”

As mentioned above, besides the initial purchase and installation cost, the most homeowner in Toronto can expect to cost around $300-500 per year to operate a central air conditioner unit, that includes maintenance and electricity usage costs. Most homes will probably be in the low to middle end of this cost range, with the homes that are larger in sizing are tending to be at the higher end of this cost range


Factors that are affecting electricity usage and central air conditioner Operating Costs

  1. Size of your home– Very common sense, a larger home requires a larger central air conditioner unit which draws more electricity in order to power it.

  2. How much your central air conditioner unit is used– in the summer, some people cool their houses 24/7, while others prefer to only use it in a certain period of the day, like early afternoon when its hottest during a day, or during the night to aid sleeping in the summer heat. If you limit your usage to only the hottest hours and days and turn the unit off when temperatures are more bearable, you’ll definitely save some money.

  3. How low your thermostat temperature is set – the lower the temperature setting you the more cost of electric power is required to run your central air conditioner unit to maintain that temperature.

  4. How well insulated your home is – well-insulated home helps to retain the cool air inside of the home that is circulated by your central air conditioner, as well as keep the warm air out. Also, It goes without saying that you should definitely make sure to keep all windows and doors closed as well when your central air conditioner is on.

  5. Outside Weather & climate– the hotter the outside temperature is the more you will need to use your central air conditioner

  6. The efficiency of your central air conditioner unit– the higher the SEER the more efficient your central air conditioner unit is. But the differences in savings are usually as significant as what many people may think they are.

  7. Peak hour usage– Generally, electricity rates are higher during peak hours.

  8. Shade around your homes & other factors– things like the trees and shade around your home can affect the interior temperature and thus central air conditioner

With all things considered, your average monthly electricity costs to run a new high-efficiency central air conditioner unit in Toronto are likely between $50 – $150+/month based on all the above factors.

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Six energy-saving tips to keep your central air conditioner  unit operating costs down in the summer

  1. Upgrade your Home insulation– Upgrading/Installing your home’s insulation like attic insulation, for example, will help to maximize the retention of heat in the winter and cool air in the summer. You’ll definitely feel comfortable and you’ll ensure that your central air conditioner isn’t working harder than it needs  Also, make sure to check the seal around your windows to see if they need to be replaced as well.

  2. Choose ENERGY STAR® –In order to save the additional electricity cost of cooling in your home, many consumers opt to select a new ENERGY STAR-certified central air conditioner with a higher SEER rating. But like mentioned above, the savings can be limited. But besides, a more energy-efficient unit is also good for the environment and the pocketbook!

  3. Get SMART –You can turn your central air conditioner off during the time while you’re not in strong need of it to limit the waste and lower the cost of your monthly electricity bill Indeed, installing a SMART thermostat can allow you to set your home’s temperature automatically by certain schedule or even remotely.

  4. Adjust your thermostat –Try not to keep running your central air conditioner 24/7 or you can even raise the temperature a few degrees to help in energy savings. It may not seem like a lot of adjustment but a couple of degrees can make a big difference

  5. Get a tune-up –Be sure to book a maintenance tune-up/checkup to ensure that your central air conditioner system is fully functional for the summer seasons without any possible waste.  A central air conditioner that is not maintained in time can work inefficiently which will lead to higher monthly electrical bills Even just doing some cleaning and maintenance yourself can help keep your central air conditioner unit in good working condition, according to the Consumer Reports North American.

  6. Beat the heat in off-peak –Electricity prices are much cheaper during the off-peak hours like late in the evening and overnight. You can actually save a lot of cost by limiting your central air conditioner usage to these hours, and you’ll sleep better too!

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