Karen King Group's Blog
Many people look forward to the long summer months, but when it gets unbearably hot, it is time to look for a way to cool down. If your home doesn’t have a central cooling system, installing a mini-split air conditioner is your best bet for fighting the intense heat.
What is a split air conditioner?
A split air conditioner system has an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. The outdoor unit, installed on or near an exterior wall of the home, contains the compressor, condenser coil, and either capillary tubing or an expansion coil. In a central system, the indoor unit has ducts, louvers, and controls to set the temperature and direct the cool air. If the system is a heat pump arrangement, it sends heated air outside and pulls cooler air from underground pipes to make cooling more efficient.
Installing a central split system requires a complete retrofit of your home which might not fit every budget. Instead, consider installing one or more mini-split systems in your home.
How does a mini system work?
In the same way that a central HVAC system has an indoor and an outdoor unit, the mini system has both units as well. The outdoor unit is a compressor/condenser and the indoor unit handles evaporation, temperature controls, and louvers for directing the cooled air. The two units are connected through a small conduit opening in the wall through which pass power wiring, copper tubing, communication lines, and the condensation drain line.
What makes it efficient?
Mini-split systems do not require ducts, so retrofitting an older home is simply a matter of locating one or more units to cool the most used areas of the home. Because the cooled air does not travel through ductwork, it requires half or less of the energy that a central system requires to cool the same space. Up to 30 percent of energy consumption in a central system is lost through ductwork in attics and crawlspaces. Further, because you only need to cool the rooms you are using, you can better control your energy bills.
Some mini-split systems may be fitted with a localized duct system to push cooled air into more than one room, allowing for multi-room cooling. These systems use one outdoor unit with two or more indoor units so that each room or zone can be individually adjusted for comfort.
Why should you install one?
If you own or wish to purchase an older home that does not have a central HVAC, utilizing a mini-split air conditioning system can save your money initially, on your purchase, and in the long term on your energy bills.
Consider viewing older homes without a central AC system that might otherwise be the perfect choice for you and your budget.