With a quality heating and cooling system, you can create different temperature zones in your house. One of the best systems that can achieve this is a ductless mini-split. This system allows you and your loved ones to set different temperatures in different rooms or zones.
A ductless mini-split system absorbs interior heat before releasing it outdoors. When you turn the system on heat mode, it reverses the cycle. This is why a ductless split system can provide comfort all-year-round.
However, these systems do have limitations. When temperatures are very low, the heat pump can malfunction and/or have trouble absorbing outdoor heat. In turn, the overall performance can suffer.
How To Keep Your Ductless System Working In The Wintertime
- 1 How To Keep Your Ductless System Working In The Wintertime
- 1.1 Invest In A Ductless Heat Pump
- 1.2 Check The HSPF Rating
- 1.3 Installing The Outdoor Ductless Unit
- 1.4 The Defrost Mode
- 1.5 Installing The Indoor Air Handler
- 1.6 Compensate For The Limitations Of A Ductless Mini-Split In Winter
- 1.7 Ductless Pipe Sizes
- 1.8 Whooshing Sounds
- 1.9 Cooling Function During The Winter
- 1.10 Check Out One Of Our Ductless Installation Projects
- 1.11 In Conclusion
- 1.12 Call PFO Heating & Air Conditioning Today
There are several tips to keep in mind if you want to get the most from your mini-split. By following the suggestions below, you can optimize your system’s performance during some of the coldest days of winter. These tips include:
Invest In A Ductless Heat Pump
Make sure you buy a mini-split heat pump when you decide to purchase a ductless HVAC system. This will keep your home comfortable when winter arrives and throughout the season. Not only that, but there’s an array of benefits it offers. It allows you to set different temp zones within the home. Also, it has a compact design. Furthermore, it won’t generate heat because the heat pump moves heat. In turn, it uses less energy without sacrificing the quality of output.
Check The HSPF Rating
If you reside in an area that gets hit with frigid temperatures, then you’ll want to purchase a heat pump. A ductless heat pump will provide you with heat even when it’s below zero outdoors. What you need to do is check the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor rating, or HSPF for short. The higher the rating, the more efficient and reliable the make and model will be. A unit with a very high HSPF rating will not have issues supplying your home with plenty of heat.
An HSPF rating can go as high as 13.5, while SEER ratings can go as high as 33.1 with specific Mitsubishi models. These models are very energy efficient, but they are powerful enough to heat up your entire home very quickly.
Installing The Outdoor Ductless Unit
There are three main parts that make up a ductless mini-split system. This includes the conduit line, the indoor air handler, and the compressor. As the name suggests, the technician will install the outdoor unit outside. The outdoor unit must be installed in an appropriate place because this will allow the system to function all winter long.
An HVAC technician will mount the compressor a few inches from the ground, as this will protect it from any accumulated snow and heavy winds. When the compressor is installed too close to the ground, then snow can be sucked in. If this happens, the compressor will work harder than necessary because it will waste energy melting the snow. Also, this unnecessary use of energy could have been used to heat your home. When appropriately mounted, the compressor will properly work all winter long.
Also, the compressor should be mounted under an overhang because that will cover the unit and protect it from ice, snow, and rain. It will prevent snow and ice from building up on the unit. If no overhang is present on the property, then build a cover that can go over the compressor. It is vital not to restrict airflow. Therefore you want to leave enough space between the cover and the unit.
The Defrost Mode
To turn on the defrost setting, you have to use the controls for the condenser. The condenser could end up accumulating ice and frost if you use the mini-split system to heat your home up without using the defrost setting. The defrost setting will melt the ice, and the water will go into the pan below it. Then you can remove it from the unit.
However, the water in the pan can freeze if the temperatures become too extreme. If this happens, then the blades of the fan could freeze, and this can create a major issue. Not only that, but the coil fins could become damaged. In turn, you’ll be on the hook for expensive ductless HVAC repairs. What you need to do is install a quality drain pan heater. Trust us when we say this will prevent costly damage.
Not all drain pan heaters are compatible with all systems, therefore choose one that is compatible with the mini-split system you have or plan on buying. A professional HVAC contractor can install the drain pan heater. They’ll plug it into the condenser’s control board, which will automatically turn on the heater when the temperatures drop.
Installing The Indoor Air Handler
The indoor handler should be able to allow you to heat your entire home, but only if you ensure it’s proper installation. Therefore, always hire a reputable HVAC company, like PFO Heating & Air Conditioning, for your ductless install.
When the handler is installed in a low position, then the warm air will move through the flooring area and eventually move upward. This will heat the room at a steady pace, and it will prevent the room/rooms from overheating quickly. Plus, air handlers that are installed at floor level can make it easier to change the air filters or to clean them.
Compensate For The Limitations Of A Ductless Mini-Split In Winter
The ductless mini-split heat pump won’t be able to heat your entire home, at least not right away. This is why you’ll want to set your thermostat to at least 60 degrees or below, as this will compensate for this limitation. Feel free to keep the thermostat set at 50 degrees. This is especially true if you are going to be away from your home for a few days.
Don’t worry about how effective the ductless heat pump will be when you set it at a temperature that’s low. This is because the unit will still circulate hot air. In turn, there should be no cold spots in your property, even if you leave and come back after a few days or weeks.
Ductless Pipe Sizes
For inside and outdoor units, you need to have at least 15 feet of piping. This will soundproof the units. If it’s absolutely necessary, then feel free to have longer pipes put in. However, the longer the pipes, the more the system’s efficiency will suffer, but not too much.
When cooling or heating the house, a ductless mini-split does make a whooshing sound, but most people have no issues with this. They get used to it very quickly. Plus, the benefits outweigh this minor inconvenience. With that said, you do want to be able to tolerate a certain amount of noise with these systems, but don’t worry because it is only a nominal amount of noise.
If you want to get an idea of the kind of noise this system makes, try to find a friend or relative that already has one. However, if that’s not possible, then find a showroom that has this system, and the experts there will have no problem showing you a demo. If you find that this small amount of noise is too much to handle, then maybe you should opt for another type of HVAC system. However, it’s worth pointing out that many people that operate ductless systems in their home, can’t tell when it’s running due to how low the noise is. Some people even forget to turn the system off when they exit the home or leave the room.
Cooling Function During The Winter
Do you use your mini-split system to provide cool air to the kitchen or the dining room? If so, then you will want to install a system that can be used all-year, even during the coldest times of year.
There are a few systems to choose from. Therefore you want to choose the one that’s best suited for your needs. If you choose any old system, you could end up with a unit that will fail much sooner than later. This is why it’s a good idea to invest in wind baffles, which can prevent wind flow from getting into the compressor. Not only that, but the condenser fan will function better.
Keep in mind that not all mini-split systems can be fitted with wind baffles, and this is why it’s crucial to buy a unit that can be fitted with them. This is especially the case if you live in an area that has very cold winters or longer winters. Make sure that the baffles you purchase can be used in conjunction with the make and model split-system you’re thinking of buying.
Check Out One Of Our Ductless Installation Projects
If you want a heating solution that is energy-efficient and reliable, then consider buying a ductless mini-split system. This system allows you to remain cost-effective and meet your heating/cooling needs at the same time.
Winter is just around the corner, and the last thing you want is the coldest days to arrive and not have efficient heating. The best thing to do is to contact a professional technician. They can help you choose and install the right ductless mini-split system that’ll meet your needs this winter and beyond.
A highly skilled technician can install your system within a short period of time; that way, you’ll be 100% prepared when winter finally arrives.
Call PFO Heating & Air Conditioning Today
For all your HVAC system needs, call PFO Heating & Air Conditioning today. Our technicians are all NATE-certified, and they have a great deal of experience. They’ll also discuss what your needs are and what requirements there are before helping you select the ideal system.
As a full-service HVAC company, PFO Heating & Air Conditioning offers an array of HVAC services. This includes installations, tuneups, repairs, and much more.
Call PFO Heating & Air Conditioning today to discuss your options, ask any questions, or to schedule a free estimate. We are here for all your HVAC needs. Make sure you call us right away because winter is right around the corner, and now is the time to get the ideal mini-split ductless system.