While many modern homes still use traditional heating systems with a furnace and ductwork,, there are several alternatives that are both energy-efficient and cost-effective. Ductless mini-split heat pump systems are increasing in popularity for homes without existing ductwork. Here are four of the primary advantages of ductless mini-split heat pumps.
Zone Heating Capability
When you run a furnace system, warm air is blown into every room with ductwork at the same time. Even if you close off the grill in one of your rooms, your furnace is still using energy to send heat to that room. Ductless mini-split systems do not waste energy by heating rooms that you are not using, as they are true zone-heating systems.
Zone heating is the concept of creating pockets of warmth throughout the home as you need them. Heating zones typically encompass one or two rooms each and are created by a heat source, such as a wall heater, within the room. This capability combined with the lack of ductwork can reduce energy losses by 15 to 20 percent.
Flexible Installation Options
Ductless heat pump systems are one of the simplest, most affordable, and most versatile heating systems to install. Connecting the outdoor pump to the interior units requires only a three-inch hole for the power cable, tubing, and condensate drain. This makes a mini-split system an excellent option to install in homes that are currently relying on less efficient systems, such as baseboard heaters, wood stoves, or space heaters.
There are several different types of interior units to choose from. Floor units and wall units are common, but you can also choose ceiling units for the most low-profile option. Ceiling units can either be standard units that are visible from below, or concealed units that are installed above the ceiling and contain a small duct and grill to blow warm air into the room.
Healthier Indoor Air
One of the biggest problems of ducted heating systems is the potential for dirt, dust, and other allergens to build up in the ducts. While your furnace filter will filter out a lot of the impurities in the air when it first enters the ducts, it is not 100 effective. As years go by, the air from your furnace will be less and less pure as impurities build up in the ducts. Additionally, the dark, damp environment of your ducts is conducive to mold growth that can release harmful spores.
Ductless heating systems do not suffer from the same downsides. These systems draw fresh air from the outside through filters and directly into your home. No matter how many times you have your ducts cleaned, your indoor air quality will begin to decline again over time. Ductless systems can provide clean air for years as long as you change or clean the filters regularly.
Year-Round Heating and Cooling
Baseboard heaters, space heaters, and other ductless heating systems require you to have a separate solution for cooling. With a mini-split heat pump system, you do not have to rely on window air conditioners that can be expensive to operate and only cool one or two rooms. You will have a thermostat in each room that allows you to select heating or cooling from the same interior unit.
As these advantages show, a traditional furnace system is not the only viable option for heating your home efficiently. Whether you are renovating an older home without an efficient heating solution, or having a small home built that may not require a full furnace system, consider a ductless mini-split heat pump for a heating system that is affordable, energy-efficient, and easy to install. Contact a company like Redlands Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning to learn more.