Making The Most Of A Mini-Split AC System
A central-air system is a popular choice for cooling a home, but central air is not always the best choice. There was a time when central-air systems were the only option for cooling a home, but times have changed.
Advancements in cooling technology allow you to cool your home more efficiently than you could with a central-air system. In some cases, a mini-split system will offer you better cooling than you can get with a full-sized central-air system.
The Costs of the Ducts that Come with a Central-Air System
When you use a central-air system, you have to install ducts. This is an added expense at installation, but there are other costs associated with ducts. As air flows through your ducts from your AC unit, it exerts outward pressure on them, which can cause leaks.
The more your system leaks, the less efficient it is. In fact, leaky ducts can decrease your overall efficiency by up to 40%. Another disadvantage of a duct system is that you have to maintain the same temperature throughout your home. Thus, whether you are using a room or not, you have to cool it.
Closing the vent to a room will only add more pressure to your ducts, which can promote the formation of leaks. Also, if you have two people who like different temperatures, you either have to compromise or establish a pecking order.
The Advantages of a Mini-Split System
With a mini-split system, you can place evaporator coils directly in the rooms you want to cool. This eliminates the need for ducts, so you don't have to worry about the installation or maintenance costs associated with a duct system. Your AC unit never loses efficiency due to leaks in the ducts because a mini-split system doesn't have any.
Each evaporator unit will have its own thermostat, which provides you with two advantages: 1. You can control the temperature independently, so each room's occupant can be comfortable. 2. You can shut off the evaporator in a room that you are not using, so you don't have to worry about cooling a room that you aren't using.
If you live in a big home, then a mini-split system is probably not for you because you can only run four evaporator units off of the one condenser unit. Air conditioning services are best for big homes that are in constant use. If you live in a smaller home, or you only need targeted cooling in your home, a mini-split system can give you the cooling you need at a fraction of the cost associated with installing and maintaining a central-air system.