Valley Home Services technician mounting the ductless mini-split outdoor condenser

When compared to a ducted system, commonly referred to as central HVAC, there are many reasons why ductless mini-splits are the ideal solution for many Maine homeowners looking to make more efficient use of their HVAC unit and save on utility costs.

What Is a Ducted HVAC System?

Ductwork attached to a furnace and AC unit is a type of system that heats and cools an entire structure all at once.

A ducted HVAC unit is often controlled by a single thermostat that runs the heating or cooling system to maintain the temperature you set.

However, the temperature where the thermostat is located isn’t necessarily reflective of the temperature throughout an entire home or structure. This can result in significant temperature variations in different rooms.

Pros and Cons of Central HVAC

Pros:

  • Your home likely already has existing ductwork. If you decide to replace a furnace, air conditioner or heat pump, the ductwork can likely stay the same and won’t require significant modification.
  • A ducted HVAC unit provides consistent and reliable heating or cooling for your entire home.
  • The system offers excellent air filtration and purification for your home. Air quality products like HVAC filters, humidifiers and dehumidifiers can be integrated with the system.

Cons:

  • Since ductless HVAC systems heat and cool the entire home, you’ll likely be wasting energy and paying to heat and cool rooms you don’t use.
  • Your ductwork may require cleaning and occasional repairs, which means additional costs.
  • If your home doesn’t have ductwork, installing central heating and air can be a costly, lengthy and complicated endeavor.
  • Ductwork can leak, resulting in reduced efficiency and temperature control performance.

What Is a Mini Split Ductless System?

A mini split ductless system is designed to heat and cool individual rooms. The system comprises two units — an indoor head (up to eight heads can be installed in different rooms and zones within your house) and an outdoor condenser.

When the ductless heat pump is in heating mode, the unit will kick on when the temperature drops below what you have set on the thermostat, pulling heat from the outside air via a compressed refrigerant and pushing it inside. In cooling mode, the reverse occurs, with the system moving heat from inside your home to the outside.

One of the reasons heat pumps are so efficient is they’re essentially moving heat rather than burning fuel to generate heat.

Advantages of a Mini Split Ductless System

  • Mini split ductless systems are known for “zoning.” They provide targeted heating and cooling in specific rooms and areas of your home that can be adjusted based on your family’s needs.
  • They don’t waste energy controlling the temperature in unoccupied rooms, making them fundamentally more efficient.
  • They don’t require the installation or expansion of costly ductwork.
  • They will never suffer inefficiencies or poor indoor air quality due to duct leaks.
  • Household members or occupants with different temperature preferences can adjust their room’s heat pump without impacting other people.
  • Mini split ductless systems are easy to install and can run for decades as long as they’re properly maintained.
  • Ductless heat pumps can be added to your existing whole-house system to provide supplemental heating or cooling exactly where you want it, and avoid boosting the thermostat, which inevitably increases the temperature in your entire home.
  • Ductless mini-split heat pumps can be installed in a variety of places where installing traditional ductwork may be inconvenient or impossible.
  • Mini-split installation is fast. It is just a matter of mounting the outdoor condenser and the indoor air handler, then running the electric, condensate, and refrigerant line between the two.
  • Many energy-efficient, ductless mini-split systems are eligible for great instant rebates from Efficiency Maine. These rebates can reduce the cost of your heat pump installation by potentially thousands of dollars.

Is a Mini Split Ductless System Right for My Maine Home?

If you’re interested in an energy-efficient way to heat and cool your home, a mini split ductless system may be the right option for you.

The team at Valley Home Services is here to discuss the best HVAC options for your unique space, needs and budget.

To schedule your appointment, call (800) 316-7815.