How Do Mini Split Heat Pumps Work

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In the modern era, every homeowner finds ways to reduce energy bills. With many people choosing to occupy one room or turn the heating devices off to save some coins, technology has saved us.

The introduction of mini split heat pumps brought a new dawn for money saving. As such, today, I’ll share with you how do mini split heat pumps work.

Although there are various options for heating and cooling our homes, most systems can be stressful due to unclean air. Most heaters blow pollen and dust into the room, making it difficult for kids, older people, and people with allergies to cope.

However, the mini heat pump or the ductless heat pump has solved all these challenges. Thanks to the new technology.

What is a Mini Split Heat Pump?

How Do Mini Split Heat Pumps Work
Heat pump

Mini split heat pumps are small HVAC units that heat or cool a small house area. They have an outdoor compressor and an indoor air handler that work together to get the job done.

The units are ductless, unlike other systems. A single 3-inch pipe links the inner and the outer components. Surprisingly, an outdoor compressor can serve up to 4 indoor air handling units.

How Do Mini Split Heat Pumps Work?

The mini split heat pump has two major components.

  • The outdoor compressor
  • The indoor air handler

As discussed, the outdoor compressor is placed around 50 feet away from the inner air handling units. Both are connected by a thin pipe of about 3 inches installed around the exterior of the wall.

On some occasions, one compressor can be connected to several indoor air handlers for various rooms. Each indoor handler is installed with a separate thermostat.

The indoor air handlers are usually smaller therefore easy to mount them high on the wall or around the ceiling. When in operation, the system uses a refrigerant to transfer heat to the indoor or outdoor.

There are two general questions asked;

  • Do mini splits heat and cool?
  • Do mini splits work in cold weather?

The answers are they heat and cool even during cold weather. Read below to understand clearly.

During hot days, heat is absorbed by the refrigerant from the house and drawn out to cool the room. On the other hand, during cold days, it does the opposite. The refrigerant absorbs heat from outside and sends it inside to warm the room.

The system is designed with whisper-quiet technology, enhancing a quiet and calm environment during operation. As such, you can install it in the study room and read comfortably.

An LCD remote operates the mini split heat pump systems. All you do is press your remote for adjustments at the comfort of your couch.

Secondly, mini split heat pump efficiency is on another level. The systems are proven to be more efficient than oil or gas heating methods.

Read: Cheapest heating system to install

How Do Mini Split Heat Pumps Work
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How HVAC Zones are Determined with Mini Split Heat Pumps

If you decide to have several indoor air handlers, you need an HVAC specialist to guide you on the best zones. The specialists have the skills to determine and install the handlers in the actual locations to enhance efficiency and reduce your energy bills.

For instance, if your house has a basement, first floor, and upstairs, the number of units to install will be determined by the room size.

However, since there is no ducts installation, the cost can be lower to install all the rooms with an air handler.

Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Mini Split Heat Pump for Your Home

The mini split heat pumps are not designed for every house. There are various factors you should consider before installing one. Take a look;

  • Smaller house

The system works best in smaller homes since they are designed to heat and cool a small area. However, you can decide to have two air handlers in your large living room.

  • Old house

If you live in an old house built without ductwork, installing a new one may weaken the walls or turn to be costly. Instead, a mini split heat pump can be your best option.

  • Different temperature preferences

If you have other family members who prefer different temperatures from yours, a mini split heat pump will save you from arguments.

With each room having an air handler installed, each person can set their desired temperature without affecting the other.

Read: Should I heat my garage?

How Do Mini Split Heat Pumps Work
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Are Mini Split Heat pumps Worth It?

Mini split heat pumps have several benefits. Take a look;

  • They are easy to install

No ducts are required around the rooms; therefore, easier to install compared to other heating systems that require ducts.

  • Flexibility

You can run up to four indoor air handlers under one compressor, making the systems flexible.

  • Clean air

The system doesn’t blow air with dust or pollen, unlike others. This mechanism is very safe for kids, older people, and people with allergies.

  • Quiet

The device has whisper quiet technology that makes it less noisy during operation. As such, you may install it around and read without noise disturbances.

  • Less space

The units are installed on the higher wall or around the ceiling. The floor area is free to arrange furniture and allow easy movement.

  • Less maintenance

Systems with ducts need regular cleaning to prevent blockage and dust. In mini split heat pumps, there are no ducts hence less maintenance.

  • Energy efficient

The units are proven more efficient than gas and oil heating methods. They focus on heating a small area which reduces the energy bills.

Read: How to heat a cellar

FAQs on Mini Split Heat Pumps

Can I Install a Mini Split Myself?

Mini split heat pump systems are easy to install since they don’t require much skills like ducts installation. However, you may need an HVAC specialist to guide you on the best zones to enhance efficiency. But if you have some skills, you can do it yourself and save some money.

How Long Do Mini Splits Last?

Except for regions with higher humidity, mini split heat pumps can serve you for around 30 years. Note just like other HVAC units; they require regular maintenance for efficiency. Luckily, maintenance is a do-it-yourself task if you know how mini split heat pumps work its components.

Read: Radiant floor heating design guide