When you think of a central AC or furnace, you might think of words like “bulky” or “cumbersome.” Not only do you need to make room for their respective units, but they also require significant lengths of ductwork.
On the other hand, ductless mini-split systems look far more streamlined and high-tech. Despite the size of their air handlers, they can fit seamlessly into any room, they barely make noise, and they don’t need ducts.
With these perceptions in mind, it almost seems as if the ductless system is too sleek and shiny to ever need repairs. But that couldn’t be true, right?
As far as repairs go, there are a couple of benefits and drawbacks that need to be explained.
No Ducts Means No Duct Services
Duct systems are a cost-effective way to heat or cool your whole home. They’ve been used for decades with central AC and furnace systems.
However, what many people forget is that the ductwork is just like any other component in your HVAC system. Likewise, that means it needs its share of maintenance.
The biggest problem plaguing ducts is their eventual decay. Fluctuating temperatures and pressures will cause the ducts to buckle a little bit every day, meaning the sealants and adhesives holding them together can eventually wear out. This leads to leaks—a serious problem that can waste nearly 30% of the air that goes through the ducts.
For this reason, duct systems require occasional testing and sealing. If the ducts are in bad shape, they might just be repaired or replaced instead.
As you may have guessed by now, a ductless system has nothing to do with this issue. You can factor these potential costs out of the equation entirely.
More Air Handlers = More Maintenance
On the other hand, there is more room for potential repair problems since these systems have more units.
Central air conditioners require only one outdoor unit and one indoor unit. A ductless system, on the other hand, could have as many indoor units as there are rooms to cool—plus one more for the outdoor unit.
Although this makes for efficient heating and cooling, the downside is that each air handler is going to need its own maintenance checks. That can certainly lead to a more expensive maintenance visit than one for a furnace or central AC.
But It’s Still a Forced-Air System
Whether it’s ducted or ductless, a forced-air system is crammed with sensitive electronic and mechanical parts. If one of those components goes bad, you can expect it to have a detrimental effect on the rest of the system. That’s just how the current technology is, regardless of what specific brand or system.
The alternative would be a system like a boiler or radiant heating system. These heaters have far fewer moving parts and don’t require heating repairs in Grand Rapids, MI nearly as much.
But despite this, ductless systems are still rated to last five years longer than the average central AC or furnace.
To learn more about ductless mini-split systems, contact Westshore Mechanical today. Serving West Michigan Since 2004.