When a home does not have a ductwork system installed in it, it can leave homeowners wondering what air conditioning options they have. The summers are getting increasingly warmer and going without some form of air conditioning is not an option. So, what air conditioning is available for homes without ductwork? In this article, we will explore one possibility that is increasing in popularity for homes without ductwork.
Some homeowners who live in homes without ductwork have opted to install window AC units. However, after investing in these types of systems, they quickly find out that window units are a far cry from providing the comfort that they seek during the hot and humid summers. These units use a lot of energy. They are noisy. Their indoor air quality suffers. Even worse, their home still feels hot and sticky.
Ductless systems are increasing in popularity throughout the United States. Not only are they being installed in homes that already have forced air systems, but they also serve as an excellent option for homes that do not have a ductwork system.
Homeowners usually choose to go with a ductless system over the installation of ducts. The reason is that installing a ductwork system is expensive and time-consuming. No one wants to, essentially, rebuild their home to have ducts put in place. Adding ductwork to a house requires the massive alteration of the walls. Doing so takes away from the typical activities of everyday life. It requires the household to live in a construction zone.
Ductless systems, on the other hand, offer homeowners a quick and easy installation. For most typical circumstances, installing a ductless air conditioner usually takes about a day. A ductless installation only places about a 3-inch hole in the wall. This small hole is used to run electrical wires from the indoor air handler and to the outdoor compressor. Therefore, homeowners have found a growing interest in ductless systems for homes that do not have a ductwork system in place. Ductless systems provide homeowners with lower cooling costs, quiet operation, improved indoor air quality, and a higher level of comfort than all of the other options available.
Ductless Air Conditioner Reviews
When looking for a ductless system for your home, it is essential to consider a few factors. Not all ductless systems are created equally. Therefore, it is vital to take the time to look into a few different models to find the one that works best for you.
Some of the factors that need some consideration include BTUs, how many cooling zones your home needs, and the type of installation that will take place. For example, a ductless system with a single zone has one air handler which connects to one outdoor air compressor. If you want to air condition more than one area, then a multiple zone ductless air conditioner is necessary. It uses many air handlers (the indoor units) and connects them to one condenser (the outdoor unit). However, the best way to determine this is to verify how many BTUs you will need to cover the square footage of your home. Also, you will need to consider installation type.
Installation type refers to wall mounted units or ceiling units. Ceiling units apply to single zone systems only. Ceiling units can be recessed, concealed, or suspended. The best way to determine which type of unit works best for you is by consulting with a licensed and certified HVAC contractor.
Mitsubishi vs. Fujitsu
When comparing different ductless AC manufacturers, there are two that stand out. One is Mitsubishi, and the other is Fujitsu. Although both have incredible reviews that discuss their reliability, energy efficiency, long warranties, and increased levels of comfort, Mitsubishi tends to top any other brand of ductless air conditioners.
Mitsubishi offers the highest level of energy efficiency. Some units have a SEER rating that goes up to 20-22. It provides a higher level of cooled air for a minimal amount of energy use. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the system will be. The parts have a 5-year warranty, and the compressor has a 7-year warranty. If your system is installed and registered within 90 days from installation, the parts and compressor have a 10-year warranty. Additionally, if a Mitsubishi Diamond Contractor installs it and it is registered within 90 days from installation, then your warranty is extended for two more years, for a total of 12 years. Mitsubishi has manufactured ductless systems for over 30 years, and they are top of the line in the industry.
Ductless Cooling Costs
Ductless cooling costs can vary from one home to another. Various factors come into play. Some of these factors include:
- The difficulty of the installation
- The number of zones in your home
- The type of unit that you chose to have installed
- The size of the unit
- Your electric panel
- The configuration of your system
There are many different ways that a ductless air conditioner can be installed in your home. For this reason, the configuration of your units can move your installation cost from the low end to the high end of pricing.
Single Zone Ductless Systems
The installation of a single zone system consists of one indoor unit, an outdoor unit, and the line set that runs through the wall. The installation ranges from $3,500 to $5,000. Single zone systems are great for smaller homes, sunrooms, a garage, a finished attic, or a pool house. It works in small homes that do not have any ductwork or in an area of the home where the existing ductwork does not extend.
Multi-Zone Ductless Systems
The cost of multi-zone installations varies. For larger homes that do not have ductwork in place, they may need to install 3 or more units. The number, of course, honestly depends on the home’s layout and the cooling needs of the homeowner. A multi-zone system with two indoor units costs between $7,000 to $10,000. A much larger house with 4 zones costs $14,000 to $17,000.
It should be noted that ductless systems provide flexibility. You can always add units to your home in the future. You can add a zone when it works with your household budget.
While the initial cost of installing a ductless air conditioner may seem steep initially, your investment pays for itself quickly. As mentioned earlier, these units are extraordinarily energy efficient. Therefore, you will see a significant reduction in your home cooling costs. Thus, the installation of a ductless air conditioner is a smart investment for your home.
For a free consultation, contact Princeton Heating & Air Conditioning. Our NATE certified HVAC contractors will advise you on all of your air conditioning options so that you can feel nice and comfortable this summer. Call our office today to schedule an appointment.