Guide to Mini-Split Air Conditioners: What They Are and How They Work

August 18, 2017

Most homeowners are informed about central air conditioners.

Mini-split systems are a form of ductless heating and cooling. Rather than giving conditioned air to the complete home through a network of air ducts, they heat and cool a single room at a time. This provides more advanced temperature control, enhancing comfort and energy efficiency.

How Do Mini-Split Air Conditioners Work?

Mini-splits are most similar to heat pumps in the way they operate. Both kinds of equipment offer electric cooling, the same as an air conditioner. This uses refrigerant to draw out heat from in a building and exhausting that warm air outside. Then, a reversing valve allows the system to run backward, heating your house in the winter by removing heat from outdoor air and depositing it inside.

The biggest contrast between mini-splits and heat pumps is that mini-split systems don’t need ductwork. As an alternative, the indoor unit has a built-in air handler, which mounts directly to the wall or ceiling in the area you are looking to heat and cool. Copper tubes, wiring and a condensate drain line connect to an outdoor condensing unit through a small conduit in the wall. This exterior component looks similar to an air conditioner or heat pump condenser.

More than one indoor unit can work off of a single outdoor condenser, permitting you to heat and cool your full home with this system if if you want. This configuration also makes zoning practical, a very desirable feature that permits you to customize when, where and how much you heat and cool individual areas.

Mini-split basics infographic Birmingham 

Is a Ductless Mini-Split Right for My Residence?

Mini-splits are a great choice for most households. Think about these reasons why installing a ductless mini-split might be a wise choise for you:

  • You can heat and cool a total residence that doesn’t have existing ductwork.
  • You can turn off the heat and air conditioning in empty rooms to save on your energy bills.
  • Mini-splits provide extra heating and cooling for spaces that are difficult to keep comfortable.
  • Use a ductless system to heat and cool a house addition or sunroom without the hassle of installing ductwork or the annoyance of relying on window AC units.
  • Mini-splits are the perfect choice for spaces where traditional ducts is impractical. A few examples are period houses, tiny homes, temperature controlled sheds or workshops, or garage conversions.
  • What are the Advantages of a Mini-Split System?

    Ductless mini-splits are extremely capable systems, but you might still be thinking why you would want to choose it over a regular furnace and air conditioner. Here’s why a growing number of Birmingham homeowners are using ductless mini-splits:

    • Avoid the hidden issues of ductwork: By delivering heated and cooled air directly, air doesn’t move through leaky air ducts on its way to every room. This can save you upward of 30 percent on your heating and cooling costs. Also, if your house doesn’t already have ducts, you avoid the annoyance and expense connected to putting them in.
    • Select the best temperature for all rooms: With zoned heating and cooling from a ductless mini-split, you can keep an office chilly while maintaining a comfortable nursery—all while optimizing energy efficiency.
    • Use less money and energy by not heating and cooling vacant areas: Shutting supply registers in a central HVAC system can disturb it, straining the equipment and canceling any potential savings. But with independent air handlers in every room, you can heat and cool certain areas only when you need them.

    Depend on Norrell Service Experts to Put in Your Mini-Split Air Conditioner

    Much like common HVAC systems, ductless mini-splits require meticulous sizing and Expert installation to deliver the most efficient performance. Our experienced mini split installers in Birmingham can help you determine if a mini-split system will fit your needs. We can then support you with determining the precise equipment size and model to make your house as comfortable and energy-efficient as possible.

    For added info, or to request an appointment, contact Norrell Service Experts at 205-267-0023. You can also schedule an appointment online.

    chat now widget box