A few years ago, I had a crazy notion that I wanted to park my car in the garage rather than the driveway. The only problem was that my husband had his workshop taking up all of the space in the garage. We decided the best way to take care of this problem was to get a shed. However, a shed wouldn’t be as insulated as the garage was, and with our cold Utah winters and hot Utah summers, working in the shed wouldn’t be much fun. Luckily I work for Ameritrue Heating and Air. Jim suggested a ductless mini-split heat pump would be the perfect solution, and he was right! My husband now loves working in his ideal temperature space, and I love having a garage to park my car in!
Ductless mini-split heat pumps, also known as “mini-splits” and “zoned HVAC,” are heating and cooling systems that don’t need any ducts to condition the air.
Suppose you’re doing a home add-on or renovation or want to condition your garage or shed. In that case, a mini-split can be your best solution if your home doesn’t have existing ductwork. If extending or installing new duct systems is overly complicated or not practical, a mini-split may be just what you need.
Suppose you have a larger home and want more control over your heating and cooling in specific areas. In that case, this is another reason to consider a ductless system. By only heating and cooling the rooms in use, you can save a lot of energy and money. And with more control over the temperature, you can avoid that awkward question – “Who touched the thermostat?”
How Does A Ductless Mini-Split Work?
A ductless mini-split system comprises two main parts: the indoor air unit and the outdoor compressor/condenser.
The indoor unit, typically hung from the ceiling or mounted high on a wall, sends conditioned air straight into your room. The indoor unit is connected to the outdoor compressor with a refrigerant line rather than a duct system.
In addition to a refrigerant line, the indoor unit is also connected to the outdoor unit with a power line, suction tubing, and a condensate drain line.
Your HVAC professional can connect multiple indoor air handling units to one outdoor unit. You control each indoor unit independently, but they all use the same outdoor heat pump unit to absorb or disperse heat.
How Are HVAC Zones Created?
With the help of a professional HVAC technician, you assign one mini-split to a specific area, zone, or room of your home when you have multiple indoor air handling units. Your Ameritrue HVAC contractor will help you design your zones to create the most energy-efficient and convenient zones for your family.
Generally, you can have up to four indoor air handling units (four rooms or zones) for one outdoor unit. Your indoor units’ number depends on your home’s size and how much heating or cooling your home and family requires.
If you wanted, you could have one mini-split unit in your garage, another on the first floor, and a third in the basement. Spending most of the day on the first floor? Save money by keeping the other areas at a more energy-efficient temperature.
Did you know most duct systems lose around 20-30% of the conditioned air through gaps and cracks? Since mini-split units don’t use ducts, you won’t lose any conditioned air through the ductwork. This loss is especially significant if you have ducts running in unconditioned home areas, such as crawlspaces and attics.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of A Mini-Split System
Ductless mini-split systems are excellent choices for renovations and home additions that don’t have any existing ductwork. They are also a perfect choice for larger homes that only require temperature control in specific rooms at one time. Since each zone has a thermostat, you can condition the used spaces while saving money on the unused ones.
While ductless mini-splits have many advantages, they may not necessarily be suitable for you. For instance, if you have a one-story home with ductwork, you’re probably better off with a traditional furnace and air conditioner.
Ductless Mini-Split Advantages
- Small size.
- Flexibility and convenience, separate thermostat controls
- Remote control
- Easy installation; mini-split only requires a 3-inch hole in the wall for the conduit.
- Doubles as air conditioning and heating system
- Sleek, modern look
- Saves you money and energy
- No ductwork
- Customization options
- Longer lifespans
Ductless Mini-Split Disadvantages
- Possible Higher upfront costs than some systems; however, lower operating costs.
- You might not like the way the indoor unit looks.
- Finding a qualified HVAC professional to install and service your mini-split system is one of the most significant challenges.
Luckily, if you live in Utah, you have the mini-split experts at Ameritrue Heating and Air Conditioning. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to give the professionals at Ameritrue Heating and Air Conditioning a call at 801-855-5820 or visit our website, and see how we can start saving you money!