How Much Does a Ductless Heat Pump Cost?

Typical Range:

$1,300 - $8,000

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.

Updated October 18, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

A ductless heat pump—commonly referred to as a mini-split—provides zoned cooling, heating, or a combination of the two to your home without needing to install new ductwork. Ductless heat pumps cost an average of $7,500 and range from around $1,200 to $17,000

A ductless heat pump system, whether for heating or cooling, has two main parts: the outdoor unit and up to eight indoor evaporative units with refrigerant lines connecting them. You'll need a concrete pad outside to place the exterior unit on and a dedicated 220-volt circuit, both of which cost extra. 

The only difference between a unit that cools or heats only and one that can perform both is the ability to move heat in both directions. This guide helps decode the costs around mini-split heat pumps to help you learn more about how heat pumps work before choosing one.

Average Cost to Install a Ductless Heat Pump

Average Cost High Cost Low Cost
$7,500 $17,000 $1,200

Ductless Heat Pump Split System Prices

System kits range from $800 to $10,000, with some five-zone systems reaching around $12,000. For a customized setup, consider purchasing each component individually.

Ductless Heat Pump Part Average Unit Cost Range
Refrigerant line $5 per ft.
Installation kit $300 – $500
Evaporative wall mount $300 – $1,000
Indoor ceiling cassette $500 – $1,700
Evaporative ceiling mount $700 – $1,800
Outdoor condenser $750 – $5,300

Note that the installation kit usually includes all the components necessary to install the system, such as wires, lines, connectors, and more. However, it doesn’t include the evaporative cooler or cassettes.

Ductless Heat Pump Prices by Brand

Although most brands are similarly priced due to a competitive and growing market, you'll find some small differences between them, as listed in the following table. Mostly, you'll want a brand you or your professional trusts. Keep in mind that DIY installations may void warranties.

Ductless Heat Pump Brand Average Cost Range Efficiency
Daikin $1,000 – $11,200 Low to average
Fujitsu $1,180 – $9,300 Low to average
LG $900 – $10,100 Average to high
Mitsubishi $1,500 – $12,500 High
Trane Varies Very high
Toshiba Carrier Varies High

Ductless Heat Pump Cost per Zone

Heat pump installation costs are often advertised with one or two zones in kits. A complete five-zone mini-split kit can reach $17,000 in materials, with labor adding an additional $500 to $2,000 or more. Basic single-zone units runfrom $700 to $2,200 but can vary up to $4,300, depending on the brand and size. 

You’ll pay about $1,500 to $3,000 more per zone, depending on the location, brand, and installation costs involved. Typically, you’ll pay around $1,000 more per zone for the equipment alone. Keep the following points in mind when determining how many zones you need:

  • Each zone adds one additional interior cassette, including running the refrigerant lines and electricity. 

  • Zones typically include each room you plan to heat or cool in your home.

  • Each zone requires more British thermal units (BTUs), which means a larger outdoor unit, adding to the price. 

  • Outdoor units typically can't support more than four or five zones. If you need more, you'll need multiple outdoor units.

Zone BTU Range Average Cost Range
1 (single) 5,000 – 42,000 $1,500 – $5,000
2 (dual) 14,000 – 48,000 $3,100 – $8,300
3 (triple) 21,000 – 54,000 $6,200 – $11,000
4 28,000 – 78,000 $8,000 – $14,000
5 35,000 – 78,000 $12,000 – $16,000
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Mini-Split Heat Pump Installation Cost Breakdown

Professional HVAC installation runs $500 to $2,000 for a typical installation, depending on the number of zones. Large, complex installs might cost up to $5,000 for labor alone. That's about 30% to 50% of a mini-split cost. You'll usually hire an HVAC pro, but you may also require an electrician or a carpenter. A few points to remember when pricing your project include the following:

  • Installation typically takes 5–16 hours, but large multizoned installs may take slightly more. 

  • Your HVAC pro may need the help of an electrician or a carpenter. 

  • Location, accessibility, and permits may also increase your installation budget.

HVAC Professional

HVAC professionals typically charge about $75 to $150 per hour. You'll usually call them to install a mini-split heat pump system since it's an HVAC system. They'll also be able to give you quotes and ideas for alternatives to a mini-split. 


In most cases, you won’t need a carpenter as your mini-split installer can do this work. But if you do need one, carpenters cost about $25 to $100 per hour plus trip fees. Expect to pay a total of about $200 to $300. 

A few things you’ll want to remember about hiring a carpenter for this project include the following:

  • Carpenters might cut holes in walls and alter walls to accommodate the cassette systems or refrigerant lines. 

  • You’ll need a pass-through hole for the lines that connect the indoor and outdoor units. 

  • A siding specialist may be required for custom siding work.


Electricians charge about $50 to $100 per hour or about $300 to $700 for this project. Heat pumps require their own dedicated 220-volt circuit. Running a new circuit may also require you to budget for the cost of upgrading your electrical box

In some places, you may be able to have your HVAC installer do this work. However, most locations require a licensed electrician to install the electrical circuit.

Location and Accessibility

The location of your installation can affect how long the project takes. The higher the complexity and more inaccessible the areas your pro needs to reach, the more you’ll end up paying in labor and added material costs. Expect to pay around $10 to $20 per foot for materials. 

Please note the following:

  • Higher floor installations require more conduit and wiring. 

  • Installations in attics often require the movement or removal of insulation. 

  • Hard-to-reach places require both more work and more materials.

  • Add an extra hour or more of labor for higher floors and hard-to-access areas.


Permits are usually necessary for installing a new electrical circuit to run the system. Most of the work doesn’t usually require a permit. If required in your location, your installer will know the cost. Typically, your project quote includes any necessary permit costs. Always check with your homeowners association before installing anything outside your home.

Ductless Heat Pump Cost Factors

Most installs range from $1,500 to $10,000, meaning some definite factors affect the price within that range. The main cost factor is the size of your system, including BTUs and zones. 


The size of your home dictates how many BTUs you'll need to heat or cool it. The larger your home, the larger the system. You'll also pay more as you add more zones, not only for the extra wall units but also for the increased power needed to use the extra zones. 

Heat Pump Efficiency

The more efficient the unit, the higher the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) and heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF) rating (or SEER2 and HSPF2) and the higher the price you’ll pay for the unit. But it won’t affect the cost of labor. Higher ratings translate into lower energy bills. Although you’ll pay more upfront for a higher-efficiency system, it uses less electricity, meaning lower energy bills. 

  • HSPF: This is used for heating systems, with the higher the rating, the more efficient the system. Most systems fall between eight and 11, with high efficiency over 10 HSPF.

  • SEER: This is used for cooling systems, with the higher the rating, the more efficient the system. It usually costs more as well. Most systems are 16 SEER but can go up to 33 SEER.

Note: According to the National Association of Home Builders, starting in January 2023, heat pump regulations will be moving from SEER and HSPF to SEER2 and HSPF2 to denote a change in how system testing is done. There will soon be new rating numbers. Systems manufactured before January 2022 will continue to use the old rating system. 


The climate you’re in regulates how efficient and how much energy you’ll need to run your system. Northern climates need more efficient systems made specifically for colder climates. You’ll likely payup to $2,000 more for these systems. 

Home Upgrades

You may want to reduce your system's energy usage even further by increasing your home's energy efficiency. You'll likely want to investigate insulation, windows, and adding weather stripping to seal your home.

Split Heating and Air Conditioning Wall Units (PTAC) vs. Ducted Heat Pumps

Because a ductless mini-split costs $2,500 to $9,500 on average—more than most other types of HVAC systems—you'll want to consider a few similarities and differences before deciding. Ductless heat pumps and packaged terminal air conditioner units (PTACs) are flexible options for homes where installing ductwork is impossible or cost-prohibitive. 

An HVAC installer will know the specific pros and cons for your area, climate, and home type, so consult with one before deciding.

Ductless Mini-Split Pros and Cons

Ductless mini-splits make for an affordable and energy-efficient choice for HVAC needs, but with some notable pros and cons.


  • Flexible placement options

  • Energy efficient

  • Fast installation

  • Quiet and unobtrusive

  • Low heat pump repair costs


  • Higher installation cost at $2,200–$8,500 for 1,000 sq. ft.

  • More even heating and cooling

  • Visible wall- or ceiling-mounted units

Packaged Terminal Air Conditioner Units Pros and Cons

Pros and cons of PTAC include some similarities with a ductless unit, but you'll want to note a few differences. 


  • Less expensive installation at $1,000–$1,500 for 1,000 sq. ft.

  • Easy to install

  • Heat pumps are energy efficient


  • Limited temperature control

  • Limited placement options

  • Very loud

  • AC units are expensive to run, but heat pump types are more efficient

How Does Ductless Heating and Cooling Work?

Ductless systems operate like a standard heat pump but with a split system, splitting the condenser from the air-handling unit. It can either heat or cool the home by moving heat from one location to another. The condenser unit outside the home removes heat from the air and condenses it into a refrigerant. The refrigerant moves the heat from one place to another. 

You'll have to choose between a cooling-only, heating-only, or combination system, which costs a bit more. The only difference is the ability to move heat in both directions. Keep the following points in mind:

  • A heating system pulls heat from the outside air and moves it into the home.

  • A cooling system pulls heat from inside the house and moves it outside. 

  • A combination of the two has a system that can reverse refrigerant flow, allowing heat to transfer both ways. 

Some systems work in 0 degree Fahrenheit or colder temperatures. Below that, they're no longer able to pull heat from the air and a supplemental system—like a baseboard, fireplace, or space heaters—helps keep the home warm. In frigid climates, consider a geothermal heat pump with supplemental heat. Keep the following points in mind:

  • Geothermal heat pumps cost around $12,000 for a complete installation and use of the ground for heat. 

  • Mini-split heat pumps are a fraction of the cost but use less-efficient air for heat transfer. 

DIY Ductless Heat Pump Installation vs. Hiring a Pro

It’s possible to install ductless systems yourself, but you’ll almost always need an electrician to install the electrical circuit needed to power it. Professional installation ensures the job is done correctly without damaging your home. Incorrect installation can damage not only the house but also the system. 

Contact a local ductless system installer for a quote and to discuss the size you need and the best placement. 

Have More Questions About Your Ductless Heat Pump?
Ask a Pro


How much does it cost to install a ductless heat pump vs. AC?

It’ll cost about twice as much to install a ductless heat pump versus a central AC unit. Your home's layout, location, accessibility, and heating and cooling needs will determine the actual costs for a mini-split system, while a central AC system only needs a larger central unit.

Should I use a heat pump or electrical wall-mounted unit?

You should use mini-split wall-mounted units equipped with more traditional electric heating elements for extreme climates that drop well below 0 degree Fahrenheit. Mini-split heat pumps don't work well in extremely low temperatures and need a supplemental heat source. Hire an HVAC pro to determine which one is right for your climate.

What mini-split pump size do I need for my space?

The best way to determine the pump size you need for your space is to have a professional HVAC installer near you inspect your home and provide you with a quote. For a rough estimate, you'll need 1 ton for each 600 to 650 square feet or about 20 BTUs per square foot.

How much does a mini-split heating system cost to operate?

A mini-split heating system operation costs vary by unit but run from $170 to $1,200 per year, depending on the size and efficiency of it. SEER and HSPF ratings measure how efficient a system is. You can expect to save anywhere from 20% to 40% or more on your utility bill. 

Can a ductless heat pump heat a whole house?

Yes, a ductless heat pump can heat an entire home. You’ll need to size it correctly and include enough zones throughout the house to heat it entirely. Talking to a professional is the best way to make sure you have enough power to heat your entire house.