Are you looking to buy a mini-split heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) system? Unlike central HVAC systems, mini-split HVAC systems don’t require ductwork. You can install them in individual rooms without relying on ductwork. Also known as ductless HVAC systems, they are ideal for basements, garages, bonus rooms and other indoor spaces. But there are several things you should consider when choosing a mini-split HVAC system.
#1) Cooling Only vs Cooling and Heating
Some mini-split HVAC systems only offer cooling, but others offer both cooling and heating. Mini-split HVAC systems that only offer cooling are essentially packaged AC systems. They feature a condenser coil and an evaporator coil. Mini-split HVAC systems that offer both cooling and heating feature these same coils, but they operate like a heat pump. They can transfer heat from the interior to the exterior, or they can transfer heat from the exterior to the interior.
#2) Cooling Capacity
You should consider the cooling capacity when choosing a mini-split HVAC system. While only some mini-split HVAC systems offer heating, they all offer cooling. Cooling performance or strength is represented by cooling capacity. And cooling capacity is measured in tonnage or British Thermal Units (BTUs). The higher the tonnage or BTU, the greater the mini-split HVAC system’s cooling capacity.
#3) Energy Usage
Different types of mini-split HVAC systems offer different energy efficiency ratings. You can refer to the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating to determine how much energy a mini-split heat pump will use. A high SEER rating indicates energy efficiency. It’s not exclusive to cooling. Rather, SEER ratings represent energy efficiency for both cooling and heating.
Since you’ll probably be using it indoors, you may want to choose a mini-split HVAC system that’s relatively quiet. All mini-split, as well as central, HVAC systems produce some noise during operation. But some of them are quieter than others. Mini-split HVAC systems often have a decibel rating. The decibel rating reveals how much noise a mini-split HVAC system will produce.
#5) Installation Requirements
Don’t forget to consider the installation requirements when choosing a mini-split HVAC system. There are two main parts to a mini-split HVAC system: the blower and evaporator coil and the condenser coil. You’ll have to install the former part on a wall inside of your home, and you’ll have to install the latter part outside of your home. If you aren’t comfortable installing it yourself, though, you can always hire a professional to upgrade your home with a mini-split HVAC system.