Ceiling-mounted ductless units offer a lot of advantages over other styles of ductless units. In particular, they’re discreet and they improve airflow. However, there are many different types of ceiling-mounted ductless units. If you’ve decided on a ceiling-mounted ductless unit, you still have several other decisions to make.
To help you out, we’ve put together a list of the questions you should consider when choosing a ceiling-mounted unit. These questions will help guide you to the best ceiling-mounted units for your home. Have questions about cost, installation, or other elements related to buying a ceiling-mounted ductless unit? Then, contact us at NETR, Inc today.
1. Can your home accommodate ceiling-mounted units?
Ceiling-mounted ductless units work in most homes, but there are some exceptions. In almost all cases, they work on the top floor of your home because there’s ample space between the ceiling and the roof, or in some cases, you can even put a unit in the attic and duct the air to the rooms below.
However, for basements and ground floor applications, you need to ensure that you have enough room to fit the ductless unit into the ceiling. Most units require at least 10 inches of space, and you also have to work around recessed lights, vent work, or anything else in your ceiling.
If you can’t fit a ceiling-mounted unit into your ceiling, you may want to look at suspended ceiling mounts. These units are more obvious than the recessed units, but they can attach to nearly any type of ceiling. They can be a great option for people who really want a ceiling mount, but whose home can’t accommodate it.
2. Do you want to add heating to your ceiling-mounted air conditioning?
All ceiling-mounted ductless units offer air conditioning. However, you can also opt to add heating to your system — the additional cost for heating is surprisingly affordable. If you want to add supplemental heat, you should expect to spend a few hundred more dollars.
Hyper heat adds between $1,00 to $1,500 to the cost of a single-zone setup, but keep in mind that this replaces your existing heat source. It can efficiently heat your home in sub-zero temps.
You need to make this decision before you invest in your ceiling-mounted unit. Unfortunately, if you change your mind after installation, you will need all new equipment.
3. What type of outdoor condenser do you want?
Your heating and cooling preferences will dictate the type of outdoor condenser that you need. There are outdoor condensers that only work with AC units, and there are also heat and hyper heat condensers. Additionally, you need to choose between a single or multi-zone condenser.
Different types of ceiling-mounted units work with different types of condensers. You need to choose a ceiling-mounted unit that works with the condenser that you want.
4. What capacity do you need?
Ceiling-mounted ductless units come with a range of capacities. For instance, the MLZ-KP EZ-FIT® ceiling cassette from Mitsubishi comes in capacities ranging from 9,000 to 18,000 BTU/H. The main deciding factor for capacity is the space you’re trying to heat or cool.
Typically, for a standard home built in New England between the 1940s and 1990s, you need between 25 and 30 BTUs per square foot. So, if you’re trying to cool 500 square feet, you need about 12,500 BTUs. However, factors like building materials, insulation, and ceiling height can also affect the capacity you need.
To ensure you select the right capacity for your ceiling-mounted unit, you should have an HVAC professional come to your home. They can do a manual J calculation to assess the capacity you need.
5. How many ceiling-mounted units do you want?
You need one indoor unit for every zone in your home. For small homes, apartments, or condos, you may only need a single ceiling-mounted unit, but most homes require at least two zones. So, they need at least two units.
The number of zones you need depends on the layout of your home, but it also varies based on personal preference. For instance, some people want every bedroom to be a separate zone — that allows you to customize the temperature settings in every room. But others want multiple bedrooms or a whole floor in the same zone so that they can save money on equipment.
6. Do you want to use other types of mounts?
As you think about the number of zones in your home, keep in mind that you don’t necessarily have to put a ceiling mount in every zone. Depending on the setup of your home, you may want to use floor- or wall-mounted units in some areas and ceiling-mounted units in other areas.
7. Where do you want to put your ceiling-mounted unit?
For maximum efficiency, it’s usually best to put ceiling-mounted units near the middle of the room. This maximizes your efficiency and helps the air flow more effectively around your room. However, you also need to take into account how you use the space — for instance, if you only use two-thirds of a room, you may want to put the unit in the middle of the living area rather than in the middle of the room itself.
8. What type of airflow do you want?
One of the main advantages of ceiling-mounted vs wall-mounted ductless units is that they offer airflow in more directions. You can choose a dual-vane ceiling-mounted unit that blows air in two directions, or you can opt for a multi-vane unit that blows air in four directions. The latter is ideal for large open spaces.
9. What shape of unit do you want?
The two main shapes of ductless ceiling-mounted units are square and rectangular. You can choose the shape you want based on your aesthetic preferences, but you also need to consider the functionality of the unit and how that works for your space.
Generally, the rectangular units blow air in two directions, while the square units blow air in four directions. Beyond that, you also need to consider the installation process.
Most rectangular units fit between the rafters or joists, and you don’t need to do any carpentry work besides cutting through the sheetrock. Square-shared units, in contrast, don’t fit between the rafters, and by extension, they require additional carpentry work during the installation process.
10. Do you want some ducted ceiling-mounted units?
When rooms are close together, you don’t necessarily need to put a ductless ceiling mount in every room. Instead, you can put a heat pump in one room and then, use a small amount of ductwork to vent it to an adjoining room.
This often comes into play with upstairs bedrooms. Instead of putting a unit in every bedroom, you can put a heat pump in the attic, and then, you can run duct work to each of the rooms and put registers in the ceilings.
This setup allows you to have all of the advantages of a ductless system, but it helps you save a bit of money. Rather than buying a separate unit for each of the bedrooms, you buy a single unit for the attic.
11. What type of controller do you want?
Different ductless units are compatible with different types of controllers, but some of the main options include wall-mounted controls, handheld remotes, and phone apps. There are also integrated controls that let you control your ceiling-mounted unit as well as your backup heat source.
12. Who should install your ceiling-mounted ductless unit?
Ideally, you should always opt for professional installation when you get a ceiling-mounted ductless system. For ductless units, DIY installation is very error-prone, and in some cases, it can void the warranty on your equipment.
When choosing an installer, look for a company with extensive experience in the HVAC industry, but also, make sure that they have dedicated experience with the type of ductless unit you’re installing.
Companies like Mitsubishi and LG provide extensive training to the companies in their dealer network. This training ensures that HVAC professionals know how to select, install, and maintain branded equipment for their clients. Ideally, you want to hire a company that has the highest level of training and experience possible.
At NETR, Inc, we have the highest level of dealer training for both Mitsubishi and LG ductless units, and we also have 30+ years of experience in the HVAC industry. Whether we’re working with residential or commercial clients, we are committed to their comfort.
Want to make your home or business more comfortable? Want help choosing and installing a ceiling-mounted ductless unit? Then, contact us at NETR, Inc. today.