Thursday, September 12, 2013

High Efficiency Ductless HVAC

The HVAC industry has recently dubbed what were called mini-splits "ductless systems." They operate similarly to what you will be familiar with from some hotel rooms, although modern residential units offer remote control operation. Mini-split refers to the small size and the two units split, indoor and out. These systems can be a very economical choice for a remodel, and they are standouts in terms of energy efficiency.

The obvious advantage to these in remodel construction is that they don't consume the space required for the duct work. If the remodel is being done within an existing structure, you won't lose the area overhead or in corners. Some people don't care for the look of the indoor unit, and if it bothers you, there are ways to install a flat mounted grille by using some creative carpentry. Placing it in a discreet location or concealing it with built in shelving are both ways of dealing with this issue.

More and more frequently these systems are being used in new construction as a result of other advantages. A forced air system with ducts incurs roughly a 30% energy loss, whereas the ductless system will lose only 1 to 5%. They have become a popular choice for net-zero energy construction.

In addition to energy savings, the price of the units may be lower. The labor expenses required for these units will be significantly less because they are far simpler to install than a system that requires duct work. Savings on the HVAC system can then be devoted to improvements in insulation, windows and sealing in air, so that the construction is extremely efficient overall.

This video from Fujitsu discusses their mini-split and how it works for climate control and cleaning the air.

1 comment:

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