As a homeowner, you most likely understand the tasks necessary to maintain value, function, and appeal of your house. From professional carpet cleaning to maintaining your lawn, it is easy to see how overwhelming ownership can be. Unfortunately, you may not be placing enough emphasis on updating or maintaining your home's heating and cooling system. Considering heating and cooling accounts for more than half of your home's overall energy use, ensuring your system is clean, updated, and in good working order is key to comfort and efficiency. Of course, if you live in an older home or are building a new home, installing a new, modern heating and cooling system is smart. To lower your heating and cooling bills and conserve energy, consider the benefits of a mini split system.
Traditional Versus a Ductless Mini-Split
Traditional central heating and cooling systems utilize one unit. Installed outdoors, this one large unit forces heated or cooled air into your home through ductwork. Located in your home's walls, crawlspace, attic, and ceiling, this complicated design of metal funnels air throughout your home. Due to the complexity and need, ductwork is expensive to install. In addition, you may suffer from 25 to 30 percent of energy lost through the ductwork of your traditional system.
A mini split system does not require ductwork to move heated and cooled air into your home. However, installers connect copper lines from a small unit outdoors to various units inside your house. In most cases, these interior units are mounted to a wall or ceiling in each room of your house.
If your home utilizes a traditional system with ductwork, installing a mini split system may not be financially feasible. However, if you are building a home or starting a heating and cooling design from scratch, going ductless is smart. The cost of installing a mini split ductless air conditioning system in your home ranges between $1700 and $2100.
While the cost is lower than installing a complete traditional system with ductwork, the largest return on your investment will be through your monthly utility bills. Installing an Energy Star certified mini split system reduces your heating and cooling costs by 30 percent.
Not So Mini Benefits
Conserving energy and reducing your heating and cooling cost are obviously great benefits, but these other benefits of a mini split system may surprise you:
- Indoor Air Quality – Dirt, dust, mold, unappealing odors, and allergens easily trap inside the ductwork of a traditional heating and cooling system, which circulates into your home. By eliminating the ductwork, you are reducing the amount of allergens in the air. For families who suffer with various dust, pet, and outdoor allergies, a mini split system is a great option.
- Comfort – A mini split system utilizes small units, mounted to walls, in various zones of your home. Each unit operates at a specific control to create comfortable temperatures in the zones. For example, one unit heats or cools the living room and kitchen. However, the unit in the master bedroom may heat or cool at an entirely different level. This ensures efficient and comfortable temperatures in different rooms of your home. To maximize energy efficiency, you can power down units in uncommon rooms, such as a guest bedroom or formal living room.
- Noise Level – Although mounted inside your home, the interior units do not contain compressors or motors. These louder heating and air components rest in the system's one outdoor unit, so mini splits are actually a more quiet option.
The entire concept behind a mini split system may seem overwhelming. However, using a ductless heat pump split system, you can conserve energy, reduce your monthly heating and cooling costs, and enjoy the comfort of a heated and cooled home.