Ductless Heating and Cooling System: Is It Right for Your Home?

Ductless heating and cooling systems, also known as mini-split HVAC systems, are becoming popular due to the cooling capabilities they provide, without the myriad problems associated with ducted systems. Ductless systems consume less power and are energy efficient so you save a great deal of money on your utility bills.

Read more to understand how ductless heating and cooling systems work and if they are right for your home.

What Is Ductless Heating and Cooling?

While old-fashioned heat pumps and central AC systems push the heated and cooled air through ducts, ductless heating and cooling systems transport the air directly into different regions. Ductless systems consist of a small outdoor unit and a single or multiple indoor units that involve simple mounting skills and access to electricity.

What's the Ideal Condition for Ductless Air Conditioner Installation?

The ideal conditions for ductless air conditioner system installation include:

  • Homes with expensive electric heat and cooling (such as baseboard; electric radiant, furnace)
  • Older homes without any ductwork
  • Homes with costly central heating due to excessive fuel costs
  • Rooms that are not frequently inhabited
  • Spaces next to unrestricted areas where ductwork would be visible (for instance above a garage)
  • Add-ons or sheds where extending ductwork is not viable (like shed, barn, garage)

Pros of Ductless HVAC Systems

Here are the advantages of ductless heating and cooling systems:

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Comment by Franco Oyuela on June 24, 2019 at 2:24pm

Benefits of Ductless Systems:

Includes Fast Installation
Installing a traditional HVAC system is a complex and lengthy process if you need new ductwork. Installing a ductless air conditioner, on the other hand, is faster and means you won’t have the discomfort of being without cool air for long. For a small home with only a few rooms, a service technician can complete the job in as little as a day.

Ductless air conditioning systems are also a good choice if you’re building an addition to your home. They also often cost less than extending the ductwork of your central HVAC system to the new addition.

Offers Personalized Comfort
If your family squabbles over the temperature in your home, a ductless system can end the battle. With units in different areas of the house, it allows for zoned temperature control. Each member of the family can set the unit in the room they’re occupying at their desired temperature, thereby keeping everyone happy and comfortable.

Increases Energy Efficiency
Ductless air conditioning systems are more energy-efficient for the following reasons:

You can switch off units in rooms that aren’t in use rather than continue to cool the whole house. This lowers your energy use and electric bill.
Traditional HVAC systems sometimes develop leaks in the ductwork that reduce the efficiency of the unit. You avoid this problem entirely with a ductless air conditioning system..
Most air conditioners use one- or two-speed compressors that cycle on and off to keep your home at the programmed temperature. As a result, they use more electricity. Ductless air conditioners use variable speed compressors that continuously make adjustments to keep the home at a consistent temperature. Since they don’t switch on and off throughout the day, they’re more energy-efficient.

Improves Indoor Air Quality
If anyone in your family suffers from allergies or asthma, a ductless air conditioning system is excellent for improving air quality in your home. Unlike traditional HVAC systems, a ductless system doesn’t have ductwork that allows dirt, dust and debris to accumulate. It incorporates multi-layer filtration that reduces the amount of pollutants, dust and allergens that enter your home, keeping it clean and healthy. It’s also better at dehumidifying the environment.

Saves Space
One of the nicest things about a ductless air conditioning system is its compact size. Window units are unsightly and obtrusive, and central HVAC systems are bulky and complex. They take up space in the basement or attic and require extensive ductwork.

A ductless system consists of two parts: the indoor air handler and the outdoor condenser/compressor or heat pump. One outdoor unit can connect to up to four indoor air handlers that are located on the wall in each room. For a more discreet solution, you can install a ceiling cassette instead of a wall unit.

Requires Minor Maintenance
To keep your ductless air conditioner in good condition, you’ll simply need to clean the filters, keep the vents of the wall unit clear, and tidy up around the outdoor unit to maintain airflow. You won’t have to worry about cleaning ductwork or sealing duct leaks like you do with traditional HVAC systems.

Schedule annual inspections with your HVAC contractor who will conduct a thorough check of the system, identify problems and make repairs if necessary. If you properly maintain your ductless air conditioner, it can last up to 20 years.


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