“Mini splits” or ductless air conditioners are becoming more popular among homeowners in Southeast Michigan and all across the nation, for a good reason. Whether you have a newer home without a traditional forced-air heating system or live in an older house without existing ductwork, mini-splits offer several advantages over central heating and cooling systems. Why consider a ductless air conditioner? Here are a few important reasons.
No compromising the architecture of your home. Because mini splits are minimally invasive, you do not have to go through the hassle of having ductwork and air vents installed, or having your home torn apart. Mini splits can be installed by drilling a small hole into the wall, and their small size never intrudes on your home’s beauty or decor. Ductless and eco-friendly for heating and cooling your home, enjoy greater control over your family’s comfort.
A cost-effective solution to comfort. We are not just talking about operational costs, but installation and other factors. When you install a traditional HVAC system, there may be considerable renovation to consider if walls have to be torn out for the installation of ductwork. Rebuilding the wall, painting, replacing light switches or receptacles – it is important to keep all of this in mind considering all that’s required with a mini-split is a small hole in the wall.
A mini-split ductless system costs about half of what it costs to install a central unit. While mini-splits cost more than central HVAC systems regarding cooling capacity, it is important to remember that mini-split systems are “zoned” meaning you can cool or heat only the room or rooms someone is occupying rather than the entire house. Unlike ducted systems, mini-splits have no energy loss, so they are more energy efficient and cost less to operate.
Small in size. Ductless air conditioners are ideal for small living spaces such as an apartment, basement or attic room, or smaller home. While large homes are better served by a central HVAC system, a mini-split may be the solution for a new addition or previously unconditioned space that now needs air conditioning or heating. Every situation is different, however mini splits are compact in size and high recommended for cooling smaller spaces or homes without ductwork. Sleek and stylish, these units are mounted on the wall and blend seamlessly into the surroundings. Even the outdoor units are compact and mounted high on the exterior wall where they are connected to the outdoor compressor and refrigerant lines.
An eco-friendly cooling/heating option. Many Michigan homeowners are concerned about the environment and looking for alternatives to not only air conditioning but appliances and other equipment as well. Because mini split systems are designed for use in specific zones, you only cool the area where you need it. This results in substantially reduced energy use – and no conditioned air leaking from ducts as is often the case with central HVAC systems. Additionally, mini splits operate on the most environmentally friendly refrigerant available today, a huge advantage for those concerned about the environment.
Built-in heat pump means warm air during winter months. Ductless air conditioners essentially work in reverse during the winter months, utilizing an integrated heat pump that heats the areas of your home where you need it. Heat from outdoor air is absorbed and brought inside to warm the air, whereas in summer months heat is extracted from the indoor air and taken outside. You enjoy a comfortable home no matter the season.
Save on energy use. The EPA estimates that by switching to a ductless system, homeowners can reduce energy use by 20 to 30 percent each month. Again, no ductwork means no wasted energy, and mini-splits consume only the amount of energy necessary to cool or heat a specific space. Ductless air conditioners maintain the comfort you desire, without constant cycling on and off to maintain comfort as traditional HVAC systems do. What about a window-mounted air conditioner? Even those with high ENERGY STAR ratings are far less efficient than mini splits.
Convenience. What could be easier than installing a window AC unit? While a window air conditioner may not require professional installation, they are simply not an efficient way to cool your home over the long term. Window units blast cold air in the immediate vicinity, while the rest of your home remains too warm or too cool without installing several other window units. They also block the view and natural light and can be unsightly and bulky in terms of decor. Window units only cool, so you do not enjoy the heating benefits during winter months you do with a mini-split system.
As you can see, there are many reasons you may want to consider switching to a ductless air conditioner whether to preserve the architectural integrity of an older home or enjoy comfort where you need it without wasting energy often lost through leaking ductwork. At Haley Mechanical, we provide Ann Arbor homeowners with a variety of cooling and heating solutions, so you are sure to find the one that’s right for your comfort, energy efficiency, and budget needs.