When people talk about mini splits, they tend to focus on ductless designs, but this isn’t the only option. You can get either ducted or ductless air source heat pumps. They both use the same energy-efficient technology, but one option has ducts while the other doesn’t.
To help you learn more about the differences, we put together this guide. Keep reading to learn more or contact us directly.
What Is a Ducted Air Source Heat Pump?
This is an air source heat pump that delivers cool or warm air to your home through ducts. It heats by extracting warm air from the outside of your home and bringing it inside, and it air conditions by reversing this process. Ducted air source heat pumps can connect to your existing ductwork or new ductwork.
A ducted air source heat pump blows air into ducts which carry the air to vents which release air into the room. A ductless air source heat pump features an indoor air handling unit that blows air directly into a room. Both options use heat pump technology to move hot air rather than generate heat.
Ductless heat pumps are easier to install if you don’t have existing ductwork, and with this option, you don’t have to worry about losing efficiency through the ductwork. A ducted heat pump is a great option if you have existing ductwork, if you want to add ductwork, or if you have applications that would work better with a short-run duct.
If you have existing ductwork, you may want to connect a heat pump such as the SEZ low-static horizontal ducted indoor unit to your ducts for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the most popular reasons that people take this route:
- To improve efficiency by moving from a traditional furnace to a heat pump.
- To reduce your carbon footprint by upgrading from a fossil fuel furnace to an electric heat pump.
- To add air conditioning to a central system that only includes heating.
- To enjoy the efficiency of a heat pump without having air handling units visible in their home.
- To streamline installation (when they already have ductwork in place).
- To avoid having conduit on the outside of their home.
These are just some of the reasons that people take this option. In some cases, homeowners even opt to combine ducted and ductless systems. For instance, imagine that you have ductwork throughout your home but it doesn’t extend to your accessory dwelling unit (ADU). Then, in this case, you may want to connect a ducted air source heat pump to your ductwork and then put a ductless mini split in your ADU.
A ducted heat pump combined with short duct runs allows you to reap the advantages of ducted and ductless air source heat pumps. Often, people take this route when they’re trying to heat and cool multiple small rooms that are very close to each other.
To give you a classic example, imagine three bedrooms in the second story of a home. You could put a single small-capacity indoor air handling unit in each of these rooms — that gives you a separate thermostat for each room, but it also drives up your upfront cost.
In contrast, you could put a ducted unit in the attic, and then, you can run short ducts to each of the rooms. This turns all three rooms into a single zone with a single thermostat, but it also saves you money on equipment costs.
Wondering what’s best for your home? Ultimately, it depends on your personal preferences, your existing ductwork, whether or not you’re building a new home, and multiple other factors. Want to learn more? Then, contact us at N.E.T.R., Inc today. We can help you decide on the perfect options for your unique situation.