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

August 18, 2017

Many homeowners are most familiar with central air conditioners.

Mini-split systems are a type of ductless heating and cooling. In place of delivering conditioned air to the full home through a network of air ducts, they heat and cool a single room at a time. This allows more advanced temperature control, increasing comfort and energy efficiency.

How Do Mini-Split Air Conditioners Work?

Mini-splits are most similar to heat pumps in the way they cool. Both kinds of equipment deliver electric cooling, the same as an air conditioner. This requires using refrigerant to extract heat from inside a building and issuing that heat outside. Then, a reversing valve enables the system to work backward, adding warmth to your house in the winter by removing heat from outdoor air and bringing it inside.

The biggest contrast between mini-splits and heat pumps is that mini-split systems don’t have to have ductwork. Instead, the indoor unit has a built-in air handler, which mounts directly to the wall or ceiling in the room you wish to heat and cool. Copper tubes, wiring and a condensate drain line link to an outdoor condensing unit through a narrow conduit in the wall. This exterior component looks similar to an air conditioner or heat pump condenser.

Multiple indoor units can work off of a single outdoor condenser, enabling you to heat and cool your full residence with this system if desired. This configuration also makes zoning practical, a highly attractive feature that permits you to choose when, where and how much you heat and cool individual spaces.

Mini-split basics infographic San Antonio 

Is a Ductless Mini-Split the Best Choice for My House?

Mini-splits are an excellent solution for most households. Think about these reasons why using a ductless mini-split could be right for your home:

  • You can heat and cool a total house that doesn’t have existing ductwork.
  • You’ll be able to switch off the heat and air conditioning in unoccupied spaces to save on your energy costs.
  • Mini-splits give extra heating and cooling for rooms that are difficult to keep cozy.
  • Use a ductless system to heat and cool a residence addition or enclosed patio without the expense of putting in ductwork or the hassle of relying on window AC units.
  • Mini splits are the ideal choice for spaces where ductwork is impractical. A few examples are period homes, tiny homes, temperature controlled sheds or workshops, or garage conversions.
  • What are the Advantages of a Mini-Split System?

    Ductless mini-splits are highly efficient systems, but you could still be thinking why you would want to select it over a common furnace and air conditioner. Here’s why more San Antonio homeowners are using ductless mini-splits:

    • Avoid the pitfalls of ductwork: By delivering heated and cooled air directly, air doesn’t pass through cracked air ducts on its way to each room. This can save you upward of 30 percent on your heating and cooling costs. Also, if your residence doesn’t already have ducts, you avoid the inconvenience and cost connected to putting them in.
    • Choose the ideal temperature for every room: With zoned heating and cooling from a ductless mini-split, you can keep an office refreshing while maintaining a warm nursery—all while optimizing energy efficiency.
    • Conserve money and energy by not heating and cooling unused areas: Closing supply registers in a central HVAC system can disturb it, putting strain on the equipment and canceling any potential savings. But with individual air handlers in all rooms, you can heat and cool certain rooms only when you need them.

    Depend on San Antonio Air Service Experts to Put in Your Mini-Split Air Conditioner

    Much like common HVAC systems, ductless mini-splits require careful sizing and Expert installation to ensure the most efficient performance. Our skilled mini split installers in San Antonio can help you decide if a mini-split system will fit your needs. We can then assist with finding the correct equipment size and model to make your home as comfortable and energy-efficient as possible.

    For added details, or to request an appointment, get in touch with San Antonio Air Service Experts at 210-570-9705. You can also schedule an appointment online.

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