As of 2014, the cost of installing an air conditioning unit in a 1,600-square-foot house falls between $3,000 and $5,000. If the duct work of the central air conditioning unit needs to be installed as well, then this price doubles.
This installation price is dependent on the size, design and tonnage of the air conditioning unit. In this case, tonnage does not refer to the actual weight of the unit, but rather the amount of heat that the unit is able to remove from a space during a 24-hour period. A 1-ton air-conditioning unit can remove approximately 12,000 units of heat per hour from a given space, whereas a 4-ton air-conditioning unit can remove 48,000 units of heat per hour.