Thanks to their unique advantages, ductless mini-splits have become the home comfort system of choice for quite a few people. But because they still represent only about 10% of the total HVAC market, not many people know how to use them to their full potential. Here are some ways to get the most out of your ductless HVAC system in Berryville, VA.
Make Sure Your System Is Properly Sized
Prior to installing any kind of HVAC system, the installation team should perform a Manual J Load Calculation to determine your home’s HVAC capacity. Even though you can divide your home into a set of distinct heating and cooling zones with a mini-split, a house-wide calculation like this is still essential to ensure that your system runs properly.
A system that is too small may overburden itself attempting to either heat or cool your home, resulting in a greater risk of breakdowns and a drastically reduced useful life. A system that is too large may turn on and off too frequently and place itself under unnecessary stress or simply overload your home with more heating or cooling than you need, which poses a variety of problems.
Run Your Mini-Split Efficiently, Not Constantly
This will seem like counterintuitive advice if your entire frame of reference consists of the standard workings of traditional HVAC systems. Ordinary central HVAC systems turn on and off in response to indoor temperature changes, maintaining climatic equilibrium through cycling on and off.
Mini-splits don’t work this way. They’re designed to work at lower speeds most of the time. The startup for heat pumps tends to be the time when these systems waste the most energy, so the longer runtimes actually help save power. Additionally, the longer runtimes mean that these systems are filtering the air more often, potentially helping to improve indoor air quality. Once the system has settled into a groove, moving it out of that rhythm eats up more energy.
Put Your System Fan on ‘Auto’ Mode
Immediately after your new ductless system is installed, you may have to tinker with its settings for a bit before landing on an indoor temperature that feels comfortable. This is normal. However, once you’ve found this ideal temperature, set your fan to “Auto” mode.
When in “Auto” mode, the mini-split’s fan will vary its speed of operation in accordance with both your pre-established ideal indoor temperature and the prevailing weather outside. During colder weather, the fan will have to work harder to heat your home, and cooling it will take more work when the weather is warmer. Programming your system to respond to outdoor temperature changes helps it use its energy resources most efficiently.
Always Remember to Schedule Regular Maintenance
HVAC industry professionals customarily recommend that homeowners schedule professional maintenance on their HVAC systems at least once per year, regardless of the type of system they happen to have. Professionals will clean your system and use their expertise to detect potential problems in the early stages, saving you money in the long run by avoiding more frequent and complex repairs and premature replacements. This is essential to keeping your mini-split running as efficient as possible, as long as possible.
There are also some simple maintenance actions that you can take on your own. For example, you should change out your system’s filters every 90 days. Ask a service technician about whether it’s possible to clean the condenser coil periodically as well. Cover all your bases when it comes to caring for your ductless heating and cooling system.
When you use and care for them properly, ductless mini-splits can create an incredibly comfortable environment at a low cost. If you live in or around Berryville, VA, and have decided that one of these powerful systems might be right for you, call Griffith Energy Services to request our ductless HVAC services.
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