As I was finishing up a wiring job for a split-system (heating and
cooling), a neighbor had been watching and came over to the truck and
asked what we were doing. He said he was looking at replacing his
furnace and wanted to check out this alternative. I thought this would
be a great topic to blog about since many people don't know what a split
system/heat pump is and what the benefits are!
not a new technology, ductless heat pumps are very popular in our area
as AC, and the improving technology is making the heat pump combination
equipment a viable primary heat option. For sustained low temps
traditional heat plants are still required, but the splits are much less
expensive to operate and require no cleaning except room air filters.
Plus the rebates can be substantial!
can save 30-40 percent off the energy costs of a forced air system.
They are the go-to choice for newly constructed houses and additions, as
well as those houses with no existing ductwork and which rely upon
radiator or electric baseboard heating. If this describes your home,
here are some ways the ductless heat pump system can drive your energy
The Same Unit Delivers Both Cooling and Heating
you are in an older house with an old boiler delivering radiated heat,
and you want to add cooling, switching to a ductless heat pump system
can kill two birds with one stone, bringing both cooling and heating in
one system. An air conditioner works by transferring the heat from
inside to outside. A
is an air conditioner that simply reverses the flow of refrigerant.
Combining the functions means one less system to worry about. And newer
hyper-heating systems provide reliable heat even when it’s below
Ease of Installation and Simplicity of Use
basic ductless cooling and heating system consists of two units, one
indoors and one outdoors, which is why the system is often called a
split-ductless system. Together, they take up considerably less space
than equivalent traditional home comfort systems.
refrigerant lines deliver the heating and cooling energy to the space
much more efficiently than air ducting can. Forced air systems lose as
much as 30 percent of its energy pushing dense, cold air up big, wide
ducts through an entire house. Ductless systems in turn rely on thin
refrigerant piping to deliver the heating and cooling energy to compact
indoor units delivering air to the space much more easily.
Zone-based Cooling and Heating
can use up to eight separate indoor air-handling units for each outdoor
unit. In this way, you can have eight separate rooms or zones, each
with its own controller. You can save a lot of money by sending less
heat into lesser-used areas of your home. For larger homes, you might
consider purchasing two ductless multi-room outdoor units in order to
boost your indoor cooling and heating to the entire house. The extra
costs will be more than compensated for through eventual energy savings.
The “Greener” the House, the Better The Savings
order to maximize your savings, you want to secure your building
“envelope”. You need to make sure you have adequate insulation, and that
all window, door and attic air leaks are sealed. It wouldn’t make much
sense to purchase and install a new cooling and heating system, only to
have the savings it brings go seeping out of your house. This is
especially true in colder climates, where the ductless heat pump needs
to work harder to maintain heat in the winter.
you’re smart enough to use this modern technology, you need to be smart
enough to keep your house as environmentally sound as possible in order
to get the most out of it.
ENERGY.gov: Ductless, Mini-Split Heat Pumps (link is external)
BuildingGreen:7 Tips to Get More from Mini-Split Heat Pumps in Colder Climates