By National Refrigeration November 19, 2018
A mini-split or ductless heat pump is like a refrigerator. The system pumps refrigerant through the unit using an electric motor. When you want to warm your home, the ductless mini-split absorbs heat from the outside and pumps it into your house. When you want to cool your interior living space, it absorbs heat from inside and pumps it out.
How can such a simple process deliver extraordinary results? Let’s find out:
Central heating and cooling systems rely on long tunnels of ductwork to deliver heat and air conditioning to rooms. These ducts allow for thermal leaks, and often you only end up getting about $.66 worth of heat for every $1 you spend to generate that heat.
A ductless system doesn’t bleed out heat and cool air because there are no ducts. Because the heated and cooled air is moved through refrigerant, you benefit from nearly all the money you spend on climate control.
The efficiency of a mini-split heat pump means less energy consumption. Individual air handlers give you the ability to control the temperature in each room of your house (More on this later). Imagine how much energy you could save by only heating or cooling a room when you use it?
Grandparents, empty nesters, and Airbnb hosts who have guest rooms or rented rooms can give guests one-touch control over their comfort and save money. Business owners can optimize the environment in an office and workspace within a very affordable budget. For business or pleasure, mini-splits offer wireless control over the indoor climate and the ability to save on heating and cooling costs when rooms are unoccupied.
Plus, as opposed to portable heating and cooling equipment like window air conditioners and space heaters, ductless mini-splits are meant to be serviced regularly and last a long time. Prolonging the life expectancy of equipment puts less strain on our landfills and finite natural resources.
Policy backs the science in this case, and everyone should research and ask about the many programs set in place to save consumers money upfront as an incentive to use earth-friendly HVAC equipment technology.
A ductless system takes zoned heating and cooling to a new level. Rather than setting a uniform temperature throughout the entire house or floor, you control the indoor temperature room by room by setting individual air-handling units to their own temperature. This is especially useful as seasons change and temperatures fluctuate enough to need heat one day and air conditioning the next. Timers enable you to customize temperature to some degree, however, older heating systems are limited to either being on or off in the section of home they service. Homeowners in Rhode Island know, depending on how the sun hits your house over the course of the day, you may need to heat and cool rooms differently at the same time.
Ductless mini-splits empower you to not compromise and choose the specific temperature most comfortable for the room you’re in. You may find in early fall and spring you only need heat in your bedroom at night. A mini-split lets you do that.
Ductwork for a central heat pump is often a well-planned and executed part of a building’s construction from the early stages. When it’s retrofitted into an existing structure, the installation costs are high and the layout is often limited by the interior framing and construction of the building itself.
Installing a ductless heat pump, on the other hand, only requires the small amount of construction it takes to run tubes and wiring through a 3” hole. In other words, a factory-trained technician can do the job with little more than a drill.
Extending your room-by-room, mini-split approach is also less expensive than extending a central heating and cooling system. There’s no need to tear down walls, like you would to extend ductwork. You only need another hole in the wall, and a single heat pump can run multiple air handlers, which means upfront costs are less to outfit your second room for the same luxury and convenience.
Both the indoor and outdoor components of a mini-split produce noise levels just slightly louder than the ambient noise level of a library. That’s whisper quiet! Plus, the state-of-the-art climate control feature only runs the unit when needed.
Window air conditioners are good at drowning out the noise let in by the open window and may run all night, but if you’re one of those people who likes a quiet, peaceful room to sleep in, you’re not going to like the portable option.
The design of a ductless heat pump allows you to work around construction constraints without sacrificing function. The outdoor compressor can be as far away from the indoor air handler as necessary without sacrificing power and efficiency. With central systems, on the other hand, efficiency goes down as ductwork gets longer.
As for the air handlers, you do have some options. You may picture wall-mounted units when you think of a mini-split, but there are actually more choices to suit your interior design. You can also use a floor unit or a ceiling-mounted model. While they may not be as discrete as vents, these options do allow for some design flexibility.
A ductless system is cleaner by design. Without all that empty space to accumulate dust and allergens that you have with ductwork, there are fewer opportunities for contaminants to enter the system. Central air systems require specialized duct cleaning to run fresh.
A mini-split is cleaner because of its duct-free design and because the filters are easily cleaned by the typical user. On a monthly basis between scheduled maintenance visits, you can easily remove the filters and clean them with tap water. Or, you can clean them more often. It’s up to you. The only special equipment required may be a step ladder to safely reach the air handler.
National Refrigeration is a unique family company: one where we share our focus on our family of employees with yours. That’s why we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. We know that our reputation is on the line with every job that we do and will settle for nothing less than perfection. It’s been that way since our modest beginnings in 1969.Visit our website.
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