What Is a Ductless AC System?

ductless ac system

Installing new ductwork for air conditioning doesn’t make sense in every situation. It is often impossible to install air ducts at older homes which haven’t got the space for them. It is often impractical when the homeowner only wants climate control in a single room of their house, or is building a new addition and doesn’t wish to pay to extend their existing ductwork. New ductwork installation is also prohibitively expensive to many homeowners.

Fortunately, there is an affordable way to add reliable air conditioning to any living space. A ductless air conditioner (aka mini-split) delivers cool, dry air to any room it is installed in – and installation doesn’t require one inch of new ductwork!

How Does a Ductless AC System Work?

Ductless AC is just like a central AC in a few key ways. Both AC systems include outdoor and indoor units. They exclusively utilize the air which is already indoors. Plus, both deliver cool air on demand.

Ductless AC system’s outdoor unit connects directly to its indoor unit by a single pipe. The outdoor unit feeds liquid refrigerant through that pipe to the indoor unit’s coil. The refrigerant turns into cold gas inside the coil. This replaces heat and humidity within the surrounding room with cool and dry air. The refrigerant is continuously returned to the outdoor unit. Here, it converts back to its liquid state.

Can a Ductless AC System Cool Multiple Rooms?

The simplest ductless AC system has one outdoor unit, one indoor unit, and a single pipe that connects the two. These are known as a single-zone system.

A multi-zone system still has a single outdoor unit, but that unit connects to many indoor units by just as many pipes. A multi-zone system is an excellent choice for homes of larger families. They grant each family member total control over their own room’s temperature. A single-zone system is quite naturally less expensive to install. Though, you may upgrade to a multi-zone system at any point in the future.

What Are the Advantages of a Ductless AC System?

We’ve already touched on a ductless AC system’s primary benefit: It is affordable. Ductless AC completely does away with the need for expensive ductwork installation. In many cases the installer only has to bore single holes through the home’s interior and exterior walls. Installation is made even more affordable by the system’s smaller indoor and outdoor units, as well as its lack of any indoor wiring.

A ductless AC system becomes even more cost-effective once you consider its energy efficiency. A central AC system can lose up to 30 percent of its cool air while circulating said air through its ductwork. A ductless AC system does away with this design flaw entirely, and it furthermore allows the homeowner to avoid cooling rooms which aren’t presently occupied.

The versatility is often the best and only option for cooling certain rooms. Even when a house already has ductwork, extending that ductwork to meet an attic or garage may not be feasible. Redesigning or finishing those spaces may only be possible by adding a ductless AC system.

Ductless systems are unobtrusive.

Its indoor unit’s low-profile design won’t conflict with the surrounding room’s geometry and decor. The indoor unit creates very little noise, and it also cannot produce toxic gas which would necessitate the installation of additional ventilation. Most ductless AC indoor units are mounted high up on walls where they are out of sight and more effective at circulating air, although ceiling units are also available.

A ductless AC system’s outdoor unit also emits comparably less noise because it is smaller. But when the homeowner wishes to keep their patio, deck or other outdoor living spaces quieter, it is easy enough to install the outdoor unit farther away with a longer pipe.

Would you like to learn whether a cost-effective, energy-efficient and low-profile ductless AC system is right for your home or place of business? Contact PrairieSons today! Our expert HVAC team currently serves the greater Sioux Falls, SD area for all its ductless AC needs, and we’re standing by to explain how you can beat the summer heat with this futuristic cooling technology.