Affordable Ductless Air Conditioning
If your house does not already have built-in ducts, installing the central AC system can be a costly and time consuming process. Although central AC is an easy way to cool the entire house, some houses and budgets simply cannot accommodate this type of system. Here are the alternative options to a central AC unit.
One cost-effective option for dry climates is an evaporative cooler, also known as a “swamp cooler”. Unfortunately, these units tend to be noisy and are limited in their ability to cool. Many homeowners are picking ductless mini-split systems as their AC alternative which many people of other nations have been using for many years. Such systems provide many advantages to homes that are ill-equipped for central air conditioning, including zoning, simple installation, and energy efficiency.
How does ductless air conditioning work?
A ductless air conditioning system consists of a condenser unit that is installed outside the home and air handler units located in each room. The refrigerant cools the indoor air passing through the unit. The excess heat travels through a conduit to the condenser located outdoors, which expels it.
Air handler fans run more quietly than a window fan, at about the same noise level as central air conditioning. The condenser is the loudest part of the system and is often placed outside of the house, similar to central air conditioning.
The air handlers in a ductless AC system are placed onto the wall or onto the ceiling. You can choose to have a separate control for each air handler or to have them all connected to a central thermostat.
Multiple thermostats can be installed all over the house to create different zones of cool temperature. For example, the upstairs level and downstairs level could have their own separate thermostats, and a less used space in the house could be zoned off and only turned on when needed. You can program ductless systems to have up to four different zone settings.
What are the benefits of ductless systems?
For homes that do not have the infrastructure of ducts then they can easily have a ductless mini-split air conditioning system installed. Homeowners can choose the type and location of air handlers installed in the room. Those that can appear flushed with the ceiling or the wall will be a bit more expensive but will look much better.
It’s usually necessary to cut holes in the walls and ceilings and give up a certain amount of closet space to install the ductwork to retrofit a home for central air conditioning. Nonetheless, a ductless system just requires a little opening to interface the indoor air handlers with the outside condenser unit.
Ductless air conditioning systems save energy because the cool air doesn’t travel through large-diameter ducts. Ductless systems are generally about 30% more energy efficient than central AC, which translates into lower utility bills. The energy loss comes from the cooled air escaping through seams, holes, and leaks in the ductwork.
Homeowners can create different zones with ductless mini split systems to avoid having to cool the whole house at once. They can have a set temperature that is appropriate for sleeping in the bedrooms. By doing this you can save a lot of money on your energy bills.
A ductless system can be better than window air conditioning units as they are safer and help prevent pests from entering the home through partially opened windows. You have greater flexibility in the placement of hardware when you’re not limited to installing it in windows. They can function year-round, as they can be set to warm the house in the winter.
An air conditioning specialist can install a ductless mini-split system in less than a day, if you determine that it is the right fit your your home’s needs. They will take measurements of your house to calculate how many units you need to sufficiently cool the space, and they’ll also mention any zoning requirements that might be applicable.
While it is easy to have a ductless system installed in a home, this task should still be done by a professional. An experienced professional will gladly advise you on the best air handler units for your ductless system and point out good places to install them. An air conditioning expert can assist you in bringing your home back to comfort by offering his services that includes repair or upgrading your system.