What Is Ductless Air Conditioning?

Just like the name implies, a ductless air conditioner provides AC for your home or office without having to install ductwork. It’s perfect for older home that don’t have duct work, adding AC to any room or area of your house (great for solving hot spots), when converting a garage or attic into living space and a popular solution for the master bedroom. It’s easy to install and provides a highly efficient way to cool areas.

People also refer to it as ductless cooling, ductless mini split and some simply refer to it as a mini split. No matter what you call it, the ductless solution is growing in popularity throughout the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

Traditional AC Versus Ductless AC

There are some hurdles to consider when it comes to traditional central air conditioning systems. Zones can be large.  As an example, it’s not uncommon for a zone to comprises an entire floor of a house. This is a very inefficient way to cool your home.  It can take a long time to cool down.  Hot and cold spots can develop because of the lack of airflow required for effective cooling.  Plus, you need ducts throughout the ceiling and walls to move the cold air.  If you have an older or historic home without ductwork, it will require ductwork meaning you’ll have to rip up your whole house and spend a lot of money doing so.

Ductless air conditioning offers a reliable solution. It solves these problems because it doesn’t need ductwork to move the air and distribute it.  They are incredibly flexible.  You can cool one room, one zone in your home, or the whole house.

How Does A Ductless Air Conditioner Work?

Ductless AC and traditional AC systems work much in the same way.  They pull in the warm air from inside, absorb the heat and moisture, and then dump it outside.

The big difference is how the cooled air is delivered.  Traditional AC systems pipe the air through a network of ducts in your home.  Many homeowners don’t realize that they lose about 20-30% efficiency due to leaks in their ductwork or as the cool air travels through the ducts.

Ductless air conditioning blows the cold air directly into the room or zone.  Eliminating the need for ductwork increases efficiency and can lower your cooling costs.

A ductless air conditioning system has three major components:

  • Indoor unit
  • Outdoor Unit
  • Conduit

The indoor unit consists of a blower and evaporator.  It’s mounted on the wall inside the room.  That’s what takes the heat and moisture out the air.  They are thin units typically measuring about three feet long.

The outdoor unit is a condenser.  It takes the heat energy from the room and pumps it to the outside.

The conduit is a cable that holds refrigerant tubing, a power cable, and a drain.  It connects the indoor and outdoor units to transfer the heat.

Where Can I Use Ductless Air Conditioners?

They are small enough that you can install them in just about any home.  They literally can go anywhere.

They are so quiet that you’ll barely know it’s there.  That makes ductless AC popular for Master Bedrooms or Baby’s room.  They are also effective for:

  • Any room with hot spots
  • Home offices
  • Sunrooms & 4 Season Porches
  • Home additions
  • Bedrooms
  • Basements

You can choose ductless air conditioning for one room, an area of your home, or it can handle the whole house.  Single-zone and multi-zone ductless AC is perfect for older homes with limited space or homes without ductwork.  They are also effective for newer homes that may have hot or cold spots.

Daikin is the world leader in AC technology.  They offer a broad range of sophisticated and highly efficient AC systems with a wide variety of options.  You can choose units that wall mount or floor mount. 

How Do I Install a Ductless Mini-Split?

The only way to insure the right product selection and a professional installation is to hire a certified and trained contractor.

While ductless air conditioning has been in use for decades in European and Asian countries, it’s considered “newer” technology in the U.S.  As such, not every contractor will be experienced in making the proper product recommendation or familiar with installing ductless air conditioning units.

Make sure you hire a contractor that is trained and experienced.  Most problems arise from not choosing the right system for your needs and not getting it installed by a professional.

Ductless Air Conditioning Explained