Should I Leave My Mini Split on All the Time?
If you're used to traditional centralized heating and cooling systems, a mini-split system will be unlike anything you've seen before. It's essential to note the key distinctions regarding usage and energy efficiency, especially with all the different types available today.
The Cost-Effectiveness of Using Ductless Mini Split Systems
Chances are, one of the main reasons you are considering switching to a ductless mini-split system is the savings they offer. Installation prices, including materials and labor, vary from $2000 to $14,500, depending on the size of your home, the efficiency of the unit, and local labor rates. A traditional system costs a minimum of about $5000 and can go up to $15,000 for installation and materials.
The other cost-saving factor is energy use. Since ductless mini-split systems are much more efficient than their traditional counterparts, they typically consume less energy, resulting in lower bills and fewer emissions into the environment. That efficiency is predominantly due to the absence of ducts. Ducts account for more than 30% of energy consumption in a traditional system. But, since ductless mini-splits feature a direct connection between the inside and outside units, they eliminate air loss, thus improving efficiency. That is a major factor contributing to overall ductless heating and cooling systems costs. Heat pumps are often favored because they can cool or warm your home. Instead of generating heat like a traditional system, the mini-split uses the outside air to produce either hot or cold air.
Unlike traditional, ducted systems, you should keep your mini split system running all the time to optimize its energy efficiency and lifespan. Allowing it to cycle on and off can be costly due to the long start-up times of these systems. Turning them on and off requires more energy than letting them run. Keeping the system off for heat pump mini splits will make it more prone to freezing. That's because the indoor unit will be unable to draw heat from the outdoor unit, causing it to become too cold. If a mini-split stops working or cycles on and off due to frost buildup, it can cause severe damage to both the indoor and outdoor units and reduce efficiency.
As with any heating and cooling system, keeping indoor temperatures moderate throughout the year is the best way to ensure your mini-split provides maximum energy efficiency. This means keeping your home at or below 68 degrees in winter and 78 or above degrees in summer. Anything outside this range can be inefficient and costly.
Lastly, you should be aware of your chosen unit's seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER). The higher the SEER number, the more economical and efficient your system will be. If you are considering one of our single-zone mini-split systems, a SEER 16 rating is a great option. For multi-zone systems, look for a SEER rating of 18 or higher to get the most from your investment. If you’re on a budget, the Gree Vireo Gen 3 Kit has a SEER 26 rating and is the best bang for your buck.
Why Mini Splits Are Great Options for Your Heating and Cooling Needs
Besides cost-effectiveness and efficiency, ductless mini splits are a great option for heating and cooling because they provide excellent indoor air quality. The direct connection between the inside and outside units means there is no risk of air leakage or extra infiltration of dust and harmful particles into your home. These systems offer precise temperature control compared to traditional HVAC systems due to their adjustable fan speeds and dry-mode feature. You can adjust the settings to meet your comfort preferences without sacrificing energy efficiency throughout the day.
With modern mini-split technology, you have more options for customization than ever before. For example, our Boreal DIY-capable mini split systems offer the ability to control temperatures in each room of your home with an app on your smartphone or tablet. The ease of installation is also a vital advantage of the mini-split system. All you need is an outdoor unit, an indoor unit, and some tubing to link them together, making these systems ideal for any space, whether it's a single-room apartment or multiple rooms spread over several stories.
Overall, ductless mini splits from Comfort Up are fantastic options for providing efficient heating and cooling solutions without breaking the bank. And with their energy-efficiency ratings improving every year, now is the perfect time to switch from a traditional HVAC system.