How an HVAC system popular overseas is improving apartment living in the U.S.
It’s an unfortunate reality of apartment living: airflow is often a struggle. By the nature of their design, the same amount of air can’t move through apartments as freestanding homes – leading to reduced air quality and spaces that can be unbearably hot in warmer months.
To make matters worse, apartment buildings often rely on inefficient, energy-hogging cooling and heating systems that force residents to pay sky-high bills for mediocre levels of comfort. Many buildings use a centralized HVAC system that can’t be personalized in each apartment, creating headaches for landlords constantly fielding complaints that the temperature is too hot or too cold, and disgruntling tenants forced to supplement with portable air conditioners to make their apartments comfortable.
An ineffective climate control system impacts every facet of apartment living, creating an unbearable home environment, too-high energy bills, and strained relations between landlords and tenants.
Fortunately, the American market is beginning to embrace a new HVAC solution that resolves all of these challenges for apartment buildings: ductless mini splits. Long popular in other parts of the world, these units are gaining traction in the U.S. by enabling people to save energy and money while taking control of room-to-room temperatures in their homes.
Why conventional AC systems fail apartment buildings
Traditional HVAC systems can be a poor solution for apartment living. Here’s why:
- Centralized air solutions make it impossible for tenants to control their comfort.
- With so many spaces to heat or cool, apartment buildings require greater performance from their HVAC systems. Centralized systems, which rely on a complex network of ducts that are prone to leaks even in standard homes, often provide insufficient cooling or heating as they attempt to distribute conditioned air throughout such large areas.
- Many tenants use room air conditioners like window units to fill the comfort gaps, but they generally are not efficient or powerful enough to ensure ideal temperatures and energy savings. These bulky units also take up a lot of room in apartments where space is already at a premium.
- The ductwork that central HVAC systems require is expensive to install if it’s not already in the building.
Why ductless mini splits are the right solution
There are many factors that make mini split HVAC systems an ideal option for landlords and tenants of apartments. Super quiet and extremely energy efficient, they provide a premium heating and cooling experience that raises the value of the property while lowering energy bills. Here are six reasons ductless mini splits are the right choice for apartments:
- Easy installation. In an apartment building that doesn’t have central air, residents generally don’t have access or permission to install a large and complex ducted air conditioning system. Ductless mini splits please property managers because they don’t require extensive drilling or wall cutting – only a three-inch hole is needed to run the line set between the inside and outside units. This simple process makes them easy to install virtually anywhere, and ideal for situations with complex applications or specific heating or cooling issues, like apartments.
- They can cool many rooms. Some people assume that ductless mini splits can only cool a single room – that’s simply not the case. One outdoor unit can handle up to eight indoor air handlers, all of which are individually controlled. Multiple outdoor units can also be installed for the same building.
- Significant savings. The easy installation of ductless mini splits keeps costs to a minimum. They also significantly lower tenant utility bills – and benefit the environment – by allowing people to only use as much energy as they need to cool or heat the room they are using.Mini splits certified by the government’s ENERGY STAR program use 60 percent less energy than standard electric heating systems and 30 percent less than conventional air conditioners, where 30 percent of the air is lost through leaks, holes, or poor connections in the ducts. Mini splits’ inverter-driven compressors also improve energy efficiencies by speeding up and slowing down as needed, instead of wasting the bursts of energy needed to continuously restart a conventional unit throughout the day.
- Personalized comfort. Ductless mini splits include an array of smart operational functionalities and control options that enable every tenant to personalize their comfort without impacting other units – or even people in other rooms in their own apartment. That includes room temperature, fan speed, airflow, time of operation, and more.
- Whisper quiet. Ductless mini split manufacturers pride themselves on creating units that operate at extremely low sound levels – so whisper quiet that most people don’t even realize they are operating. That’s an important feature for apartments, where shared walls and close quarters often lead to complaints about noisy window unit solutions.
- Enhanced air quality. Mini splits overcome the poor air quality that often plagues apartment buildings with built-in advanced air filters. Their multi-stage filtration deodorizes bad odors and makes the air safer and more breathable by eliminating at least 99.9 percent of harmful airborne contaminants in a space. These quality filters also help maintain the reliability of the system by keeping out dust and particles that can clog and damage internal components. Mini splits maintain proper humidity levels as well, removing the excess moisture that can lead to mold and other harmful issues in an apartment.
A comfortable climate is the foundation of a quality home environment, but landlords and tenants of apartments have struggled to find an HVAC solution that fulfills everyone’s comfort needs at once. With customized comfort and attractive cost and energy savings, ductless mini splits are emerging as the answer to the heating and cooling challenges of apartment living.
ComfortUp is a provider of high-quality indoor and outdoor products and services that enable our customers to enjoy a more comfortable and energy-efficient lifestyle. Contact us to learn more about ductless mini split HVAC systems, and how we can help you gain control over your comfort.