If you are a resident of Firestone or a neighboring town, you may want to upgrade to a new air conditioner before summer hits. You have many options, including standard central air models that work as part of your complete HVAC system. Mini-split systems are another option. Now is a good time to find out how this system works and whether it will use a lot of power and increase your electric bills.
What Is a Mini-Split AC?
A mini-split system consists of an outdoor unit and one or more indoor units. The outdoor unit sits near your home. It has wires and tubes that connect it to the indoor unit(s). The outdoor unit sends refrigerant through the tubes to the interior unit(s) that supply cold air to each room. With a single-climate system, you use just one interior unit, also called an air handler. You’ll usually pick a central room in your home to install it, like your kitchen or living room.
The beauty of a mini-split is its ease of setting up multiple zones, each with its own air handler and thermostat. You might use one in the main bedroom and another in your living room. With zones, you can choose specific temperatures for each part. For instance, maybe you’ll keep your bedroom warmer during the day and have it cooled prior to going to bed. With smart thermostats, you can set a schedule to automatically control temperatures.
Unlike a standard system that moves air through ducts and out the vents, a mini-split has no ducts. You do not need to ensure the system is compatible with existing ducts or hire someone to install new ones.
How Much Energy Do AC Systems Use?
Different types of air conditioners use varying amounts of energy to cool the home to the same temperature. Window and portable units may work temporarily to cool a small area. If you want to keep your whole home cool, go with a mini-split or a central air system.
Window and Portable Units
Window units are the least efficient type of air conditioner. This type of AC is a temporary solution to the heat outside. You can install it yourself and move it to other rooms and windows to cool off other spaces. Window units use so much electricity that you’ll likely notice a big increase in your next bill. Portable air conditioners use even more power. These are large and bulky units that have casters or wheels on their bases. You can use one in any room when you need a break from the heat.
Central air systems have a large unit that circulates air through your ducts. It also uses duct returns that collect the air and moves it back through the system. The amount of energy the system uses will depend on its size. While a 3.5-ton AC uses up to 4,000 watts per hour, a 5-ton system can use 5,500 watts or more. In most cases, central air systems use an average of 3,500 watts per hour.
A ductless mini-split AC uses much less power than a central AC. Each air handler uses around 700 watts or less per hour. With multi-zone systems, you will use up to 2,000 watts of energy per hour when you use all climates/zones.
There are a handful of factors that determine how much power your mini-split system uses, like the square footage of your home. Mini-split systems in larger homes use a lot of electricity because they need more power to cool the whole space. The type of windows you have will also affect the energy usage. Double-glazed and triple-pane windows have more insulation and keep the air inside cooler. Systems in homes with older windows that have a single pane and no insulation require more power as cool air leaks outside.
Discover the Benefits of Ductless Mini-Split AC Systems
Ductless mini-split AC systems are highly energy efficient. You can install one in a home that doesn’t have ducts and choose a system that fits your budget. We can help you compare the Energy Star ratings on the top systems to find one that is more efficient and won’t use as much electricity. Contact My Guy Heating and Air, LLC today to discover how a ductless mini-split system can save you money.