Mini-Split Musings

Ductless Heat Pumps Offer Design Flexibility!

April 11, 2016

While a ductless system is perfect for heating and cooling an entire house, it is custom-made for homeowners who want to add on to their home, but extending the existing duct work is not feasible.

It can be challenging to meld an existing footprint of a home with the design of a new addition. Sometimes, heating and cooling design issues trump aesthetics. Ductless systems offer design flexibility because they require no duct work. Only an outdoor compressor/condenser and one or more indoor air-handling units connected by a conduit are needed. Although there are some considerations, an outdoor unit can usually be placed in a discreet area on an outside wall. And, an indoor air handler can be ceiling or wall-mounted, or free standing. With careful planning, a new ductless system can blend seamlessly with an existing system.

Ductless systems are used in commercial add-ons, too. Consider a heating and cooling design project for a recent addition to a church that consisted of 18 partitioned classrooms, a kitchen and a gym. Many bids were offered including one that required the installation of 30 air handlers! But, the resulting hybrid heating and cooling system decided upon combines the use of zoned ductless mini-splits with a roof-top energy recovery ventilator; in combination with another system that supplies additional conditioned air that reduces the capacity required of the heat pumps. In addition, thermostats are used in the partitioned classrooms for even more pin-pointed control. And that eliminates wasteful heating or cooling of rooms that aren’t being used.

In other words, the design flexibility of ductless systems offers the best possible solution for any addition, whether it is a home or commercial building project.

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