Whether we are designing a comfort system for a single room or a large campus of buildings, every HVAC project is unique. A Mini-Split heat pump, or “ductless” heat pump, is a heating and cooling system that can be a smart fit for a number of different applications. A Mini-Split gets its name because it’s “split” into two parts: an outdoor compressor or condenser, and an indoor air handler. Several indoor units in several spaces can be paired with a single outdoor unit, with a refrigerant line connecting them. In today’s blog post, we are reviewing three of the most common applications for a Mini-Split heat pump, and when you might consider using them for your new build, retrofit, or replacement project:
No-ductwork Retrofit Projects
One of the most common applications we see for mini-split systems is in retrofit projects, where we are asked to add cooling to a space that does not already have ductwork in place. This is especially common in older homes that currently heat their space through radiators or baseboards. For home or facility owners that would like to add AC (or convert from their existing heating source to a heat pump) without the expense or disruption of adding ductwork, a Mini-Split heat pump is a typical recommendation.
Bonus tip: A Mini-Split is also often what we recommend for historic facilities, where conditioned air is needed for comfort or preservation purposes, but ductwork cannot be added due to the age of the structure, the type of structure, and/or historic preservation concerns.
Not a fan of the look of wall-hung units? Depending on the space you have available, mini-split systems are available in a variety of configurations including above-ceiling, ceiling-installed, or floor cassettes. Your JK Comfort Consultant will evaluate the available space during your on-site assessment in order to suggest the best option.
Another common use for a Mini-Split Heat Pump is to add supplemental heating and cooling to a space that needs it. For some homes or facilities that are generally heated and cooled through other methods, it can sometimes make more sense financially or for design/space concerns to add a Mini-Split instead of running additional ductwork or potentially needing to increase the size of the existing equipment. Recent Mini-Split projects for supplemental comfort have included sunrooms, garages, workshops, and over-the-garage living space.
Because of the two-part design of Mini-Split systems, they can be a great way to add room-by-room control, or “zoned” control, without the additional need for zoning equipment that a traditional HVAC system would require. For this reason, Mini-Splits are a popular solution for some office spaces or multi-family facilities, as the built-in zoning abilities allow the occupant of each room or area to control their own comfort. For larger facilities or new construction, a system with zoning and advanced controls may be the more practical solution, but for retrofits, smaller applications, or a quicker fix, a Mini-split can be a good fit.
Ready to learn more about whether a Mini-Split heat pump is a good fit for your project? The JK Mechanical team is here to help. Contact us here or give us a call to learn more.