You’ve probably seen those small indoor cooling machines high up on the wall in Woodstock-area homes, hotels, and restaurants. But what do you really know about these high efficiency units?
Basically, ductless (also called “mini-split”) systems are a great, cost-effective alternative to inefficient window A/Cs – and, in some cases, central air conditioners, space heaters and electric baseboard heaters, too. They’re the top option for homes that don’t have existing ductwork, and a great option anywhere you need cold or warm air efficiently delivered indoors.
Ductless cooling (and heating) 101
New to ductless cooling and heating? Here are the basics:
- A ductless system includes two components – an indoor unit (the air handler) and an outdoor unit (the condenser/compressor). A single compressor can operate up to four air handlers.
- The key advantage of a mini-split system is that it doesn’t need ductwork. This means:
Another key ductless mini-split advantage is that the system is very flexible: not only can you vary the size of air handlers for each room, but you can also control the energy spent in each zone via the air handler’s thermostat.
Unlike window A/C units, a ductless air handler won’t block your view or leave your home vulnerable to a break-in; all that mini-split system installation requires is a 3-inch hole in your wall to connect the air handler to the condenser.
Ductless systems are extremely efficient, with some achieving SEER ratings that reach well into the 20s (most are in the 18-20 range). A window air conditioner, by contrast, usually operates in the 15- to 16-SEER range.
Mini-split systems are much quieter than a window air conditioner, since the part that makes noise (the compressor/condenser) is outside your house (rather than inside the unit, as it is with window A/Cs).
- It can be installed quickly and cost effectively;
- It can go just about anywhere in your house – from room additions and offices to converted attics and media / data storage rooms where climate control is needed;
- No windows are required, since the unit installs directly into the wall;
- Your air quality will improve, since there are no ducts in which harmful microorganisms can grow and thrive; and
- You won’t loose energy through leaky ducts (in a central air conditioning system, as much as 30 percent of your cool air can be lost this way).
When you add it up, a mini-split air conditioner set-up has big advantages over window air conditioners, giving you many of the benefits of central air conditioning without the need for ductwork. A ductless system can also be used to supplement your primary central air system, providing relief for your main cooling equipment as it manages hard-to-cool rooms or home additions.
Curious about a ductless installation for your residence in eastern Vermont? We can help! Contact Junction Fuels today to see if a mini-split system is right for you.