Advantages and Disadvantages of Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioners
If you are currently in the process of building or remodeling a home, you might be wondering about the different types of air conditioners. Ductless mini-split air conditioners are systems that not many homeowners are familiar with, however, they offer several advantages.
What is a Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioner?
A ductless mini-split air conditioner operates without ductwork and allows you to control the temperature in individual spaces or rooms. It has two components: the outdoor compressor and condenser and the indoor unit. The two components are linked by a conduit harboring the power cable, condensate drain, and tubing. Multiple indoor units can connect to one outdoor unit, which allows for “zoning.”
What is Zoning?
“Zoning” refers to regulating the temperature in individual rooms, rather than the building as a whole. Zoning is beneficial for those who spend the majority of their time in one room, or in homes where the rooms are naturally different temperatures.
Since ductless mini-splits are installed in rooms, they operate as a zoning system.
Where can you use a Mini-Split Air Conditioner?
It used to be that mini-splits were recommended for single rooms or add-ons where ductwork might not exist. We now see mini-splits being used to cool entire homes or to supplement traditional heting and cooling systems. A single unit won’t cool a 2000 sq ft open floor plan but it could help cool an overly warm room with large windows or second stories that tend to be warmer due to heat rising. You should contact an HVAC company to determine whether or not a mini-split is right for your application.
6 Advantages of Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioners
Besides being a mouthful to pronounce, ductless mini-split air conditioners have several defining characteristics that work to the homeowner’s advantage.
1. Easy Installation
It’s in the name: “mini” split. Not only does a smaller size mean “out of the way,” it also means easier installation. Easy installation means a lower installation cost. Everybody wins!
2. Flexible Zoning
As already mentioned, one of the major benefits of using a ductless mini-split air conditioner is the ability to regulate cooling in specific areas. If you use multiple units, you can control multiple areas of your home with little effort.
Because you can regulate how much energy output your system is producing, utility bills stay low. Additionally, modern units tend to be more energy-efficient, saving you money in the long run.
4. Improved Indoor Air Quality
A better quality HVAC system naturally results in better quality air. Good indoor air quality is vital to the health and comfort of your home, and a ductless mini-split is bound to help.
5. Energy Efficient
Ductless mini-split air conditioners make it easy to cool one room at a time. If you only cool one room at a time, you save energy waste on every room that isn’t being cooled. Not only is it good for your wallet, it’s environmentally friendly.
Are There Any Disadvantages to a Ductless Unit?
No system is perfect, and everything has its pros and cons. Comparatively speaking, ductless units have more advantages than disadvantages. However, you should be aware that there might be some downsides to ductless units.
1. They must be sized correctly.
Because mini-split units regulate the temperature in individual rooms, they must be properly sized to the area. A too-small system will overwork itself trying to compensate for the space, while a too-large system will constantly turn on and off, wearing itself down.
2. There are often higher upfront costs.
While ductless mini-split air conditioners save you money on your overall utility bill, the initial cost is high compared to other units. In many ways, it is an investment. If you spend more money upfront, you will spend less money over time.