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The Ultimate Mini Split Buyer's Guide

How to Pick the Perfect Mini Split

Product Expert

Installing a mini split in your home is one of the best decisions you'll ever make.

They are quiet, discrete, and arguably the most efficient way to control the climate in any home.

In this article, we'll show you how to pick the best strategy for your home while providing links to all of the possible equipment you'll need.

What's a Mini Split?
Named for their split design, a mini split system is a comfort solution used for countless HVAC installations the world over.

Consisting of an outdoor unit and one or more indoor units, mini splits can be utilized as a standalone system, supplemental system, or for dedicated rooms. They also feature a ductless design that provides flexible and compact installations making them ideal for almost any application.

Some setups include installing a mini split to previously unconditioned spaces such a garages or addition. They can also be used to supplement an existing system in areas that are under-served, or to serve as a complete heating and cooling solution for homes without duct work.

quiet comfort
Quiet Comfort
With sound ratings as low as 19 dB, mini split units can operate at sound levels quieter than a whisper.

This means your mini split will not only be unobtrusive, but you may even forget it's running at all.

Why Mini Splits?
Energy Efficiency = Energy Savings
By combining several energy-saving technologies, mini splits are one of the most energy-efficient ways to keep your home comfortable all year round.

Inverter-driven condensers cuts down on waste by delivering precise amounts of heating or cooling required to keep your space comfortable thus minimizing energy costs.

Mini Split Efficiency
Mini splits with inverter technology are more efficient and maintain more even temperatures than traditional HVAC systems.

Compared to conventional central-air equipment, mini splits use advanced control algorithms, intelligently-designed heat exchangers, and inverter-driven compressors to save you 30% or more on energy bills and achieve incredible efficiency ratings over 28 SEER.

Learn More: The Efficiency of Mini Split Inverter Technology

Learn More: SEER & HVAC Acronyms Decoded

Superior Comfort
Unlike traditional systems which are either off or on, inverter-driven units can vary the amount of cooling or heating they deliver.

This means that instead of swinging from too hot to too cold as your system turns on and off, the mini split air conditioner will deliver continuous cooling to minimize temperature variation and maximize your comfort.

As an added benefit, they even remove moisture the entire time they're running, making your home even more comfortable.

Learn More: Removing Humidity with a Mini Split Air Conditioner

Choosing a Type
Before you go off and try to purchase a mini split, you'll first need to decide if you want one that will do both heating and cooling or one just to cool the air.

Cooling + Heating vs. Cooling Only
Choosing a cooling-only mini split or one that can do supply both heating and cooling is pretty simple.

Cooling-only mini split systems are typically found in tropical or desert climates as well as special applications like server rooms. Mini split heat pumps are the most popular choice as they can be used anywhere to cool in the summer with the option of heating in the winter.

Learn More: The Difference Between Heat Pumps and Air Conditioners

Challenges in Frigid Weather
When the temperature outside drops too low, it inhibits a mini split system's ability to function effectively.

Extremely high outdoor temperatures make it difficult for an air conditioner to reject heat, and as outdoor temperatures drop below freezing, absorbing heat also becomes more difficult. In either case, this causes a decline in both efficiency and performance.

Learn More: Keeping Your Mini Split Working Through the Winter

How Many Zones?
Another key benefit of mini split systems is the ability to zone your home into multiple areas.

The ability to zone your home with a mini split system gives you tremendous control and flexibility over your homes environment. You are able to condition only the spaces you need, when you need them while controlling each space independently.

Zoning Mini Split

Single Zone
Single-zone systems consist of a single outdoor unit and a single, matching indoor unit. These types of systems are ideal for adding cooling and heating to previously unconditioned spaces or to supplement under-served spaces in an existing system. The only drawback is that single-zone systems cannot be converted into multi-zone systems at a later time.

Learn More: Choosing Between Single-Zone & Multi-Zone Systems

Multi Zone
Multi-zone systems consist of a single outdoor unit with up to 8 indoor units giving you a combination of control, comfort, and efficiency that no other system on the market is able to match.

Each indoor unit operates independently of the others in the circuit, providing you with individualized comfort in each space. For example, you can turn off your laundry room unit until laundry day, or you can adjust the unit in your kitchen when you're cooking a meal - the possibilities are endless.

Learn More: How To Create a Zoned Mini-Split System

Choosing an Indoor Unit
There are multiple types of indoor units available to serve your home's needs. The indoor unit(s) you choose should be based on your home's layout as well as your aesthetic preference.

Indoor Mini Split Unit Overview

Learn More About Each Unit Type:

It's equally important to have all of the necessary components in order to install your mini split equipment as it is to get the best quality parts to ensure top performance. From line sets to condensate pumps, you'll learn everything required to install your custom system.

Learn More: Mini Split Accessory Buying Guide

Detailed Accessory Buyer's Guides:

Installing HVAC equipment is highly technical and best left to the professionals. Take it from us, finding the best contractor to install your equipment is essential to ensure years of reliable service and warranty coverage.

You don't want to go through all the trouble of getting the best equipment just to have it improperly installed and not work properly.

Learn More: Get Your Equipment Installed by a Pro

Build Your System
Now that you know the type of system and indoor units you need, the next step is figure out which size mini split will be best for your home. To get into that "Goldilocks zone", you need one that's just right - not too small, nor too large.

NEXT: Mini Split Sizing Guide

One of the best things about mini splits is they're infinitely customizable. But, there can be thousands of systems from which to choose.

Luckily, our mini split system builder is a quick and easy way to find the right system for your home. Once you choose your specifications, you'll be able to view a list of systems perfect for your space.

NEXT: Mini Split System Builder

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