Is a mini-split system worth it? Millions of people definitely think so. The global ductless HVAC market is worth nearly $100 billion and will reach almost $150 billion by 2026.
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So how do ductless mini-splits work, and are they worth it for people who own old homes or want to save money on electricity bills? Here is what you must know about a mini-split system.
What Is a Ductless Mini-Split?
Ductless mini-splits are AC units that do not use ducts. A mini-split AC has two components that can circulate air like a central air conditioner throughout your home.
The indoor wall vent takes warm air from your home and moves it over cold condenser coils. These coils cool the air down using a refrigerant, then the vents bring the air back into your home and distribute it. The indoor unit is small enough to attach to a ceiling or wall inside your home. The system functions similarly to heat pumps without using as much electricity.
The outdoor unit disperses the warm indoor air outside your home. The unit also contains a fan that keeps your coils cool during the spring and summer.
The mini-split can be set up to reverse its usual operation. In this case, the indoor wall vent distributes cool air while the outdoor unit eliminates warm air from your home. Additionally, certain mini-splits come equipped with sensor technology that enables you to program the airflow to suit your preferences, providing warm or cool air as needed.
How Do Mini-Splits Differ from Central AC?
Central AC units rely on ducts to distribute air throughout your home. More than 30% of energy consumption for AC units is lost through duct leaks, so you can have a more energy-efficient system by switching to ductless mini-splits.
A mini-split unit warms and cools a single room, while a central AC unit warms and cools your entire home. Many central AC systems cool areas you are not using, which can be a significant drain on your finances.
Mini-split AC systems are easier to install than central units. You only need a three-inch hole to connect your indoor and outdoor units together. If you have a large room, you can connect three or four indoor units to a single outdoor unit. You can turn off ceiling devices using a remote control.
Why Purchase a Mini-Split?
Mini-splits are your best option if you want a minimally invasive installation process. Their small size means you can put them in any room, including attics and garage apartments. An HVAC technician can install your unit in just a few hours, and you can use it immediately.
Mini-splits dump air into your room instead of moving it through your ducts. This means they consume far less energy than central units. While mini-splits can have a higher upfront cost, you will save more money in the long run. ENERGY STAR units are the most energy-efficient devices on the market.
Each unit can be programmed to the desired temperature. To create a warmer environment in a particular room, adjust the unit in that area to a higher temperature than the rest of the house. In case of temperature inconsistencies between different parts of the home, you can establish a zone control system to maintain a consistent temperature throughout.
For aesthetic purposes, you may opt to install a unit that blends in with your wall color. To ensure proper circulation, make sure to uncover your mini-split. Fortunately, these units operate quietly and do not generate any unpleasant odors.
Things to Consider Before Purchasing a Mini-Split
The cost of one mini-split can be thousands of dollars. The more units you need, the more money you will need to pay. You cannot save money by installing units yourself; professionals must mount your units, connect your devices, and set up electric cables and refrigerant lines.
Extensive system maintenance is unnecessary, but replacing the filters in your mini-split every three months is crucial. In homes with excessive amounts of dust or dander, the filters may need to be changed more frequently. To simplify the process, purchase package packages containing identical filters for all your mini-splits.
Your warranty depends on the installation team you hire and the devices you buy. Coverage can last as long as 12 years, though contracts may expire far sooner. Your mini-split can last for 20 or more years before you need to replace it.
Some people find the appearance of a mini-split to be ugly or intrusive. Try to find a small unit with aesthetics that are similar to the appearance of your room.
Do you want to talk to a professional before installing a new HVAC system? Book an appointment with an HVAC professional at Ierna’s Heating and Cooling now.
Benefits of Ductless Mini-Split Units
A mini-split unit never loses air. Air enters and leaves your room seamlessly, so you will have near-perfect temperature control throughout the lifetime of your unit. Without air loss, your unit will not waste electricity keeping your home cool. A 2020 study found that the energy savings from ductless mini-split systems are as high as 45% compared to central systems with ducts.
To save even more energy, you can connect your system to a remote control and shut it off when you leave a room. You can use renewable energy to power your unit, reducing your carbon footprint significantly.
Ductless mini-split systems are highly versatile. You can add heat whenever you want and control the temperature in every part of your home.
Nearly everyone can benefit from a ductless mini-split system. They are more energy-efficient, easier to maintain, and less intrusive than central AC systems with extensive ductwork. Find someone with expertise in ductless systems, and you can enjoy clean and cool air in your Tampa home for years to come.