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  • Writer's pictureSofia Fadzil

HVAC Packaged Unit vs. Split System: Are They The Same?

Updated: May 6

split system vs hvac packaged unit

What is a Split System HVAC?

A split system HVAC, also known as a split air conditioner or split unit, is the most common found in many homes and buildings. As the name suggests, this system is divided into two main components which are indoor units and outdoor units.

Indoor Unit HVAC

Usually positioned within the structure, it houses the evaporator coil responsible for air cooling, alongside a blower utilized to distribute the cooled air throughout the area.

Outdoor Unit HVAC

Situated outdoors, the external unit comprises a compressor and condenser coil. Its primary role is to expel the heat absorbed from the indoor air during the cooling operation.

Benefit of Split Systems


Split systems offer flexibility in terms of installation, allowing for customization to suit the layout and design of various spaces.


Quiet Operation

With the noisy components located outside, split systems tend to operate more quietly indoors, ensuring a noise-free environment.

What is an HVAC Packaged Unit?

In contrast to the split unit HVAC, an HVAC packaged unit combines all necessary components into one compact unit.

This means that both the cooling and heating elements, along with the compressor, evaporator coil, and condenser coil, are put together in one unit.

Packaged units can be divided into two categories which are Air Cooled Package Units and Water Cooled Package Units.

Air Cooled Package Units

These systems utilize outdoor air for heat dissipation, eliminating the need for water. They are especially well-suited for regions where access to water is limited.

Water Cooled Package Units

These units rely on water for cooling purposes. They are commonly used in areas with limited outdoor space or where air quality may be a concern.

Benefits of Packaged Units

Space-Saving Design

Packaged units are optimal for structures constrained by limited indoor or outdoor space, as they consolidate all components within a single unit

Ease of Installation

The installation process for packaged units is generally swifter and less intricate when compared to split systems, rendering them a convenient choice for retrofitting or new construction endeavors.

Reduced Maintenance

With fewer components exposed to the elements, packaged units often require less maintenance and servicing.


Split Units VS Packaged Units


Split System HVAC

Packaged System


Divided into indoor and outdoor units

All components housed within one unit


Requires indoor and outdoor installation

Installation of a single unit


Offers flexibility in installation and customization

Limited flexibility, but space-saving design


Operates quietly indoors due to outdoor compressor

Potentially noisier due to all components in one unit

Space Efficiency

Requires space for both indoor and outdoor units


Ideal for spaces with limited indoor or outdoor

Ease of Installation

More complex installation process

Quick and simpler installation process                  

In conclusion, while both split system HVAC and packaged units aim to regulate indoor temperature, they have differences in configuration, installation, and suitability for different settings.

Understanding these differences is important for choosing the right HVAC solution based on specific requirements and constraints.

TCW Group, as a one stop HVAC manufacturer based in Malaysia, able to provide services starting from design of the units based on customized applications, up to manufacturing and complete unit assembly.

Shall you have any inquiries, feel free to reach us at

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