A homeowner looking for a novel way to save energy should consider ductless air conditioning. These climate control systems are not well known, but they are a refreshing change from the traditional units that are typically installed in a home. Systems that require ductwork are becoming more and more outdated, and newer technology has effectively come up with solutions that overcome their weaknesses.
Ductless air conditioning, also known as a mini-split system, consists of a wall-mounted air handler and a condenser that is installed outside of the home. The handler is designed to be unobtrusive, and is extremely quiet, so a family will quickly forget that the unit is even there. A couple of cables run between the condenser and handlers, one channeling electricity and the other carrying refrigerant to and from the building. To connect the inside units with the condenser, a 3-inch hole needs to be drilled in an exterior wall to run the cabling through. Installing the system is much simpler and faster than setting up a traditional unit, and is much less expensive too. The process of getting a standard unit up and running may require the technicians to tear up parts of the ceiling and renovate several areas. With ductless air conditioning, this is not the case.
There is one major difference in how the two handle climate control. A mini-split system uses zone cooling and heating to get the temperature right in a concentrated area of the home. Standard units attempt to heat or cool the entire residence when they are switched on, and this can waste a lot of energy in the process. A handler can accurately monitor and maintain the temperature in any size area, so it’s up to the homeowner to figure out how many rooms need to have access to the climate controlled system. With some modern ductless air conditioning setups, as many as four handlers can be powered by a single condenser, which should cover most needs.
A huge benefit that a mini-split setup brings is its ability to precisely control the temperature in multiple areas of the home. Many models come with programmable controls that set each handler in the house at a different temperature. If someone likes it a little warm, he or she can crank up the temp in their bedroom, while a person in the next room can relax in a much cooler space. These programmable controls can also be set to timers, so that the handlers only come on at preset times.
Ductless air conditioning is one of many energy savings strategies that allow for several benefits to homeowenrs. With zone heating or cooling, the occupants in the home can pick which handlers need to run at what times, focusing climate control efforts and reducing electricity usage. Because there is no patchwork ductwork channeling heating and cooling around, there is no leakage, and this prevents the unit from having to work harder to compensate for those types of scenarios. Finally, most new models come with inverter technology. This technology helps the handlers and condenser time startups and shutoffs better than traditional setups, so there are fewer temperature spikes, which also keeps the setup from working harder than it has to.