All About Mini-Split Air Conditioners: What They Are and How They Operate

August 18, 2017

Many homeowners are most familiar with central air conditioners.

Mini-split systems are a form of ductless heating and cooling. Instead of providing conditioned air to the complete house with a network of air ducts, they heat and cool a lone room at a time. This allows more targeted temperature control, improving comfort and energy efficiency.

How Do Mini-Split Air Conditioners Work?

Mini-splits most closely resemble heat pumps in the way they operate. Both styles of equipment deliver electric cooling, the same as an air conditioner. This requires using refrigerant to extract heat from in a building and discharging that warmth outside. Then, a reversing valve enables the system to work backward, adding warmth to your home in the winter by removing heat from outdoor air and adding it inside.

The biggest distinction between mini-splits and heat pumps is that mini-split systems don’t have to have ductwork. As an alternative, the indoor unit has a built-in air handler, which fits directly on the wall or ceiling in the area you want to heat and cool. Copper tubes, wiring and a condensate drain line link to an outdoor condensing unit through a small conduit in the wall. This exterior component looks like an air conditioner or heat pump condenser.

Multiple indoor units can work off of an individual outdoor condenser, enabling you to heat and cool your entire home with this system if if you want. This arrangement also makes zoning feasible, a very desirable feature that allows you to customize when, where and how much you heat and cool specific spaces.

Mini-split basics infographic Fort Wayne 

Is a Ductless Mini-Split the Best Option for My Home?

Mini-splits are a great option for most households. Think about these reasons why getting a ductless mini-split could be right for your needs:

  • You can heat and cool a total home that doesn’t have existing ductwork.
  • You can switch off the heat and air conditioning in unoccupied areas to save on your heating and cooling costs.
  • Mini-splits provide extra heating and cooling for rooms that are hard to keep comfortable.
  • Use a ductless system to heat and cool a residence addition or enclosed patio without the cost of installing ductwork or the inconvenience of having window AC units.
  • Mini splits are the natural choice for spaces where overhead ductwork is impractical. A few examples might be historic houses, tiny homes, temperature controlled sheds or workshops, or garage conversions.
  • What are the Benefits of a Mini-Split System?

    Ductless mini-splits are extremely efficient systems, but you may still be thinking why you would want to select it over a regular furnace and air conditioner. Here’s why more Fort Wayne homeowners are installing ductless mini-splits:

    • Avoid the pitfalls of ductwork: By providing heated and cooled air directly, air doesn’t go through holey air ducts on its way to all rooms. This can save you as much as 30 percent on your heating and cooling bills. Also, if your home doesn’t already have ducts, you avoid the annoyance and cost associated with installing them.
    • Find the ideal setting for each room: With zoned heating and cooling from a ductless mini-split, you can keep an office cool while maintaining a cozy nursery—all while maximizing energy efficiency.
    • Save money and energy by not heating and cooling unused spaces: Closing supply registers in a central HVAC system can throw it off kilter, putting strain on the equipment and canceling any potential savings. But with detached air handlers in all rooms, you can heat and cool particular areas only when you need them.

    Rely on Rolf Griffin Service Experts to Add Your Mini-Split Air Conditioner

    The same as traditional HVAC systems, ductless mini-splits call for accurate sizing and Expert installation to ensure the best performance. Our skilled mini split installers in Fort Wayne can help you determine if a mini-split system will fit your needs. We can then assist with finding the exact equipment size and model to make your home as comfortable and energy-efficient as possible.

    For added info, or to request an appointment, contact Rolf Griffin Service Experts at 260-557-1275. You can also schedule an appointment online.

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