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Are Mini Splits Cost-Effective? 5 Reasons They Are

mini split unit mounted near ceiling


When weighing your options for air conditioning systems in your home, one of the most critical factors is cost-effectiveness: powerful cooling capabilities, adequately sized capacity, flexibility, and low operating costs. Here are the top five reasons why mini splits are one of the best and most cost-effective solutions for home cooling.

1. They Are Ductless Systems

The primary benefit of a mini split AC system is its ductless nature. Unlike central air conditioning, you do not need to install or use existing ductwork in your home to deliver cool air.

The mini split system relies on one or multiple indoor air handling units (one per room or zone) and one outdoor unit. The outdoor unit’s purpose is to cycle warm air outside and send cool air to each indoor unit, using a circuit of power and refrigerant lines connecting each indoor unit to the outdoor unit. These lines fit in a 3" wide pipe, requiring significantly less work to install than new ducting in a house not already equipped with ductwork.

This system is significantly more efficient than traditional AC systems because the cool air does not have to travel through ducting, where it may leak out and cause efficiency losses.

mini split new home construction

2. They Have High SEER Ratings

Air conditioning unit efficiency is measured using the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). SEER uses a number to represent the average yearly cooling output divided by its total electric energy input. The higher the SEER rating, the less energy it requires for a specific cooling capacity, making it more energy-efficient and contributing to its overall cost-effectiveness.

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Mini split systems can achieve very high SEER ratings, higher on average than other home air conditioning systems. Although the federal minimum SEER rating for mini splits sold in the United States is 15, you can find numerous Energy Star-certified products with SEER values of 20 or more.

The highest-rated mini split systems possess SEER ratings of 25 or more. Some of the best products on the market like the Gree Sapphire 9k BTU system is as high as 38, offering unbeatable energy savings and making them well worth the initial cost. You can save even more money by looking for rebates for mini split systems, further reducing the sticker price and letting you benefit from their highly efficient nature for less.

3. They Give You Zone Control

Typical mini split systems may feature between one and five indoor units, allowing you to control the temperature and atmosphere in an equal number of rooms or zones of your home. You can also place these units in spaces that are not traditionally ducted, such as the attic, the garage, or even an outdoor shed or workshop separate from the main house.

Single-zone systems are ideal for studios, apartments, bedrooms, living rooms, or any area that requires cooling and air quality control. You can efficiently use multi-zone systems to control the atmosphere inside an entire house, including in high-humidity rooms like bathrooms or spaces with frequent temperature changes such as kitchens or rooms with high sun exposure.

mini split unit in bathroom

4. They Are Environmentally Friendly

Modern mini split systems rely on modern refrigerants, such as R-410A and R-32. These compounds are called hydro-fluorocarbons (HFCs). They are a family of refrigerants that replaced earlier-generation chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), such as R-12, and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), such as R-22. Unlike CFCs and HCFCs, HFC refrigerants do not harm the ozone layer when released into the atmosphere.

Shop High-Efficiency Multi-Zone Mini Splits

Although most mini split systems sold today use R-410A refrigerant, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plans to phase out its use by 2023 and ban its use starting in 2025. The planned replacement for R-410A is R-32, an even more environmentally friendly refrigerant with a Global Warming Potential of 675, equivalent to less than one-third of R-410A.

5. They Run Only When and Where Necessary

A significant benefit of installing a mini split AC system in your home is its flexibility. Mini splits grant you complete, independent control of each indoor air unit, letting you turn the AC on or off and choose specific temperatures in each controlled room or zone.

This system is much more efficient than a ducted system, which delivers cool air to all ducted rooms when active, including rooms not currently in use.

The mini split design cools rooms to a target temperature, turning themselves off when the sensors detect the current temperature is equal or sufficiently close to the target, as long as you opt for an adequately sized indoor unit for the specific room or zone. For example, a Gree 12,000 BTU system works best in 400 to 650 sq.ft. rooms.

Install the Most Efficient Mini Split AC Systems for Your Home

If you’re looking for cost-efficient air conditioning and temperature control for your home, ComfortUp has a selection of the best mini split systems for sale. Browse our single and multi-zone systems by Gree, Mitsubishi Electric, Rheem, LG, and Boreal and take control of your house’s atmosphere without breaking the bank.

FellowNeko /

Charise Wilson /

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