Dangers of DIY Ductless System Installation (Video)

Mike Cappuccio from N.E.T.R. Inc. discusses the dangers of installing a ductless system yourself, including buying an incompatible system or the wrong size system, and the dangers of drilling holes in your home and hitting electrical lines, gas lines, or water pipes.


Hi, my name is Mike Cappuccio. I get asked this question a lot. “I bought a ductless unit online and I’d like to know if you guys can install it.” That’s a tough question to answer sometimes. Do we want to install this? Do we want to get involved in this? Most times we do back away from that and we say no, but I want to let you know some of the dangers of do-it-yourselfers and trying to install this system in your home, because there’s a lot of danger involved in this if you don’t know what you’re doing.

The first things are, people go buy a unit online and they look and say, “Okay, this is going to work in my house.” They always tend to think bigger is better. They buy a bigger air conditioning system than they even need for their home and they end up cooling the home so much that it just runs and shuts off and doesn’t remove any moisture from the home and you end up with mold problems in your home. That’s one of the problems you can have if you don’t know how to size something properly.

The second thing that happens with this, a lot of the time, is people buy the system online, and a lot of these online sellers don’t even have units that are United States compatible, they don’t run on United States electricity. I don’t know if anyone’s ever been overseas and you try to plug a cell phone into an outlet and it doesn’t have the same outlet because they have different hertz over there for electricity and different voltages. A lot of their air conditioning systems run on different current and different hertz, and a lot of those systems are sold online and some people don’t even know what voltage they have in their house and what hertz they have in their house in the United States.

You wouldn’t even think of something like that. Then the unit shows up at your house and now, God forbid, you try to install that in your house and it’s not going to work. You’re going to have problems with that. It’s just not going to operate on the type of current that you have. It might even short out and start on fire, who knows?

Then we get the people who are smart enough to actually buy the right voltage and they get the unit and now they see, “Okay, well, now I need all these tools to install it. I don’t have some certain tools.” A lot of these tools, they’re professional tools, you need training on how to use some of these tools, digital scales that weigh in refrigerant into units. We need evacuation pumps to remove air from the refrigeration lines, we need certain flaring blocks to make fittings on these high-pressure lines that we deal with. Some of these lines, the pressure in them is 400 to 500 psi. God forbid one of those lines isn’t flared right and blows off one of the units, having a line with that much pressure maybe hit you or hit you in the face. I’ve heard of incidences where people have even been killed from that.

Next thing that do-it-yourselfer, they get out, drill a hole through your house, we’ve got to put the indoor unit in, put the outdoor unit on the outside, and they get the drill out and they make the hole in the house and, next thing you know, they’ve drilled into a gas line or they’ve drilled into an electrical line or they’ve drilled into a water pipe. I’ve seen everything happen with the do-it-yourselfer that tries to install this that doesn’t really know what they’re doing.

They have no camera to look inside the wall, no camera to examine what might be in the wall before they just start drilling these holes. A lot of times people buy an air conditioning system, it’s not even compatible. They don’t even have enough amperage and electricity in their house to run the system. These are some of the things that you really need to have a professional come out and look at.

Proper sizing, make sure to unit size properly, make sure you have the right amount of current in the house, make sure where you’re going to be drilling holes that there’s not anything in the walls. The tools that are being used and the dangers of all these things so people don’t get hurt — you could get seriously hurt installing one of these in your home. Rely on a professional to do this for you. Give us a call and we’ll come out, we’ll be more than happy to look at your home, provide you with a solution that’ll work.

It’ll be installed professionally. Now you even have a warranty. The labor warranty is going to be guaranteed for a year, all the parts are going be guaranteed for the 12 years. We’re going to be able to file all your rebates online, get you your money back from the state and these utility companies that you’re going to need. If you’re doing this yourself, you can’t apply for these rebates — you’re not a certified installer. It could actually be costing you money to do these installations.

Think about it before you really get involved in it.


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