What are Mini Split AC Units and Are They Right for Your Home?

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  • 21 Dec, 2022
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What are Mini Split AC Units and Are They Right for Your Home?

If you’re considering replacing your HVAC unit or want to move away from using a window air conditioner, you may want to consider mini split AC units. With a mini split system, you can easily control the temperature of your entire home. Don’t let the name fool you; a mini split unit provides maximum cooling! It also saves on energy costs by cooling only the rooms that you are actually using.

What is a Mini Split AC?

A mini split is a type of ductless air conditioning system. They install on your wall instead of in a window and do not need ducts or vents. At one time, older homes only had one option for an air conditioner: a window unit. Since these homes were not built with space for ducts, you had to give up the use of at least one window to enjoy a cool summer. In most homes, you’ll need more than one window air conditioner to battle the hot summers here in North Carolina. Not to mention, these air conditioners are usually loud and prone to leaking. That’s not our idea of a great solution!

As an alternative, the other option for homeowners was to remodel to include space for ductwork. This is EXTREMELY expensive and not always possible even if you have an unlimited budget.

Today, homeowners have a third option: a mini split AC system!

With a mini split unit, you can cool your home without blocking windows and without the need for ducts. These ductless options do not rely on a central air conditioning unit for cooling power. With a traditional HVAC unit, cool air is created in one location. Then, fans blow this cool air through ductwork and throughout your home. A ductless mini split system gives you several small wall units throughout your home instead of ductwork. The air conditioning system creates cool air at each individual unit, which have their own fans and evaporators.

Instead of blocking an entire window, a ductless mini split is mounted on your wall, typically near the ceiling. We’ll then drill a small hole leading to outside. Don’t worry; the hole is only a few inches wide. The refrigerant lines, drain tubing and wires go through this hole to your outside HVAC unit. Because the indoor unit needs to connect to an outdoor unit, you can only mount them on exterior walls. However, you can add a mini split air conditioner to any room in your home, as long as it has an exterior wall. It’s an easy alternative to central air. We can install these units quickly and at much lower cost than installing new ductwork.

Benefits of a Ductless Mini Split AC

By far, the biggest benefit for most homeowners is that you no longer need to use clunky window units. Although window units get the job done, it can be a huge hassle to install them every spring and store them over the winter. If you leave them in your windows year-round, you can have draft problems during the winter. This doesn’t even mention the fact that you lose use of the window. You can’t open the window when the weather is nice unless you take the unit out. You certainly can’t enjoy the view. Additionally, you are blocking the natural light from coming into the room.

Window units can also have a hard time dealing with hot North Carolina summers, especially when the humidity rises. If you’ve ever dealt with a window AC unit that is leaking water on a humid day, you know it can be a huge mess. Smaller units just can’t keep up, and you’ll find yourself supplementing with fans while still being too hot for comfort.

Even if your home has space for ductwork, it might make sense for you to upgrade to a ductless ac system when you need a new unit. We can assist with replacing or adding an HVAC system that uses a duct system. Depending on your home, however, adding ductwork can be costly and time-consuming. In addition, many projects that add ductwork to a home require city permits and inspections. We can assist you with this process if you want a central HVAC system, but be prepared for a much longer project. A ductless unit requires a few simple holes instead of completely opening your walls or ceilings.

Another benefit to a ductless AC system is the energy efficiency. Ductless mini split units are installed in every room or zone where you want cooling. However, you don’t have to cool every room in your home at the same time. You can simply cool the areas that you are using. It’s very easy to control with a wireless remote, so you don’t even have to get up to adjust the temperature. We even have Wi-Fi options so you can control your air conditioning from your smartphone. If certain rooms in your home are naturally hotter or cooler, you can control the temperature easily.

You can also program your ductless unit to change the temperature throughout the day. Imagine coming home from work to a cool house without the expense of cooling your home all day while you weren’t there. You can schedule your ductless unit to start just before you arrive. This is also a great option for cooling your home during the day, but turning off the AC at night when the temperature is naturally cooler. You can set it and forget it.

With a ductless air conditioner, you don’t have to deal with a loud fan or weird noises coming from a window unit. Ductless systems are extremely quiet. They blend into the room so after a while, you won’t even notice them any more than you would notice air vents with a central air system.

Improving Your Air Quality

Whether you choose a traditional HVAC system or a ductless option, replacing an older, outdated HVAC system can greatly improve the air quality in your home. Over time, dust and dirt builds up in your ductwork and in the units and vents. Even with regular cleaning, which we recommend, you could see decreased air quality every time you turn on the air conditioner.

Sometimes, the quality of your air can even affect your health. We’ve seen mold and mildew in HVAC systems, as well as common allergens such as pet dander and pollen. If the previous owners were smokers or you used to smoke, your home may also forever have that stale smell of old cigarettes. Replacing your HVAC system can make a huge difference.

Keep in mind that we never recommend replacing your HVAC unit unless it makes sense for your home and health. Sometimes, cleaning via annual maintenance or ductwork repair/replacement is the better option. We offer a free consultation, which includes a review of your current unit by our trained HVAC technicians. This allows us to make the best recommendation for your home. If a service plan makes more sense for you, we can help you improve your air quality. The bottom line is that we won’t inflate your bill just to make a buck. We treat our customers like family and want to help you make the best possible decision for your home.

This article from Harvard has more information about how to improve the air quality in your home, beyond cleaning your ducts.

Why Should an HVAC Technician Install My Ductless Mini Split?

Installing a ductless unit isn’t time-consuming for professionals. However, keep in mind that we have decades of experience and training. If you try to install a ductless wall unit yourself, you could damage it or even expose yourself to dangerous refrigerant. This is a job best left to the pros.

Our team is comprised of NATE-certified technicians who know exactly how to safely and quickly install your air conditioner. We are both a Trane Factory Authorized Dealer and a Mitsubishi Diamond Dealer, so we install top-quality units that will last. These are the brands we recommend to our friends and family, since we believe they are the best you can get for your money.

When you work with the Aspire team, you can also rest assured that you won’t have to deal with hidden costs down the road. If you install a unit yourself, a single incorrect connection can cause issues that need expensive repairs. You may void the warranty, if the unit even comes with one. We offer a “bumper to bumper” warranty on every Trane AC unit we install, which means that you are covered for a full 10 years. If something goes wrong, we’ll fix it for free! Even if the manufacturer warranty expires, you’re covered when you work with Aspire Heating & Cooling. Our warranty also covers installation, not just parts, so it is more comprehensive coverage than a traditional warranty.

Other technician teams may not give you a transparent price for the installation until the end of the project. They’ll give you a price quote, but then add on other fees as they install your indoor unit. You could end up with a surprise bill that was much higher than you were expecting.

With Aspire, the price we quote is the price you get. We’re 100% upfront about the cost of your mini split AC installation. We’ll review your air conditioning needs and then make recommendations based on what will work best for your home.

Here’s what a few people have said about working with our team:

“Where do I begin?? First of all, the Aspire team showed up on time, and did an awesome job!! They were very friendly and professional. Our new AC/furnace is fantastic and the crew stayed and completed the installation in one day. Once the job was done, they took the time to take us on a tour of our new system and explained all the details. I have been bragging about the excellent service to all my friends and family and my sister was so excited about our experience, that she is getting a free in-home consultation. Thank you once again Aspire Heating and Cooling for such a wonderful experience” – The Guy Family

“I switched to Aspire a couple of years ago after receiving a great recommendation from a friend. They are so thorough when completing routine service checks. I needed a new unit and, after an in-depth consultation, took their recommendation. The unit is a top performer. I was lowest in my service group in energy consumption this month and my bill has decreased substantially. Unquestioned integrity of all staff.” – Fredia Roberts

You can read more reviews from real customers here. We take pride in providing top-quality customer service and fair prices.

Does a Traditional HVAC System Make More Sense?

Although ductless units have a number of benefits, some homeowners are simply better served by a traditional HVAC unit. Mini split options only provide air conditioning, and you might want an HVAC unit that provides both cooling and heating. Or, you might have existing ductwork that will work well with a new unit, so a more traditional central air system makes more sense.

If you’re not sure which option is right for you, we can help. Our team will go over the cost and benefits of a mini split system when compared to a conventional central air setup.

Whether you choose a ductless AC or a central air system with ducts, our team of professionals will give you a great deal on your new unit.

We even have financing options to help homeowners. If you need a new HVAC unit, you shouldn’t have to stress about paying for it. Special 72-month financing is available with approved credit. In addition, we have a lease-to-own option for homeowners who don’t qualify for traditional financing. In short, if you need a new AC system, we can help you find financing.

Schedule your free consultation now by filling out the form at the top of the page or calling 336-281-0047. We’re looking forward to answering any questions you may have about ductless and traditional HVAC options.

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