One of the biggest challenges as a remodeling contractor is figuring out how to adequately heat and cool new spaces. In general, interior renovations are fairly straight forward. However, a new room addition can pose a problem from time to time. A perfect example is a sunroom addition, especially one that is constructed over a concrete slab. If the existing home is a single level ranch it is often possible to extend ductwork out to the new sunroom. But, in many cases, we are building on to a two story home which can be virtually possible to grab a duct and make an extension.
How do we get around this issue? We install a ductless HVAC system of course!
What is a ductless system you ask? Ductless heating and cooling units, also known as ductless mini-split systems, are a wall-hung unit with a separate outdoor condenser, much like a traditional system. However, ductless mini-split systems offer many benefits when compared to a traditional heating and cooling system.
Here are some of the key advantages of ductless mini split systems:
- Energy Efficiency:
- Zoning: Ductless systems allow for individualized temperature control in different rooms or zones. This can lead to energy savings since you only heat or cool the spaces that are in use.
- Cost Savings:
- Reduced Energy Bills: The ability to heat or cool specific areas of a building as needed can result in lower energy bills due to the elimination of ductwork, which can be inefficient and lose conditioned air.
- Tax Credits and Incentives: Many regions offer tax credits or incentives for installing energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, including ductless mini-splits.
- Easy Installation:
- No Ductwork: Ductless systems are relatively easy to install because they do not require the extensive ductwork of traditional central HVAC systems. This can reduce installation costs and time.
- Compact Design: Ductless units are small and unobtrusive, making them suitable for spaces where aesthetics and space constraints are important.
- Improved Indoor Air Quality:
- Filtration: Many ductless systems are equipped with filters that can help improve indoor air quality by trapping dust, pollen, and other allergens. Some models even include advanced filtration options.
- Quiet Operation:
- Low Noise: Ductless systems are known for their quiet operation, with indoor units producing minimal noise levels, creating a more comfortable living or working environment.
- Multiple Indoor Units: Ductless systems can accommodate multiple indoor units connected to a single outdoor condenser. This allows for efficient heating and cooling of various rooms or zones, each with its own temperature control.
- Year-Round Comfort:
- Heat Pump Functionality: Many ductless systems include heat pump technology, allowing them to provide both heating and cooling, making them versatile for year-round comfort.
- Improved Aesthetics:
- Versatile Designs: Ductless indoor units come in various designs and styles, including wall-mounted, ceiling cassette, and floor-standing options, allowing you to choose a unit that complements your interior decor.
- Remote Control and Smart Features:
- Remote Operation: Many ductless systems come with remote controls, timers, and programmable thermostats, which can enhance convenience and energy efficiency.
- Integration: Some models can be integrated into smart home systems, enabling control via smartphones and voice assistants.
- Redundancy and Zoning:
- Reliability: Ductless systems can offer redundancy by having multiple indoor units connected to a single outdoor unit. If one unit malfunctions, the others can continue to operate, providing a level of system reliability.
Things to consider with ductless heating and air systems:
While ductless heating and cooling units offer many benefits, it’s essential to consider your specific needs and budget when choosing a heating and cooling system for your home or business. Consulting with a professional HVAC contractor can help you determine whether a ductless system is the right choice for your particular situation.
Do your research:
If your considering such a system, you may want to check out this guide published by This Old House, “5 Best Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioners.”