Building A New Home: Consider Ductless HVAC

Published on: June 3, 2013

Building a new home is one of the most exciting steps you can take toward creating a comfortable, safe atmosphere for your family. You’ll make many important decisions about your home’s architecture, design elements and comfort systems as you build. Choosing to control home comfort with a ductless HVAC system is one of the easiest ways to meet your heating and cooling needs without breaking the bank. Ductless systems are designed to provide efficient, reliable service.

Choosing An HVAC System for Your New Home

As a homeowner, you know that choosing the right HVAC system for your new space will ensure your comfort and will help to increase the value of your home. It’s important that you choose a contractor to work with as you explore your home heating and cooling options. Your contractor will provide you with information about your HVAC options and will guide you as you select a new system for your home. In most situations, you’ll need to choose one of the following systems:

  • A ductless system with heating and cooling capacity.
  • A central air system with heating and cooling capacity.
  • Portable air conditioners and space heaters designed to take care of temporary, seasonal needs.

Understanding Your Ductless Heating & Cooling Options

Ductless heating and cooling systems have become extremely popular with both home and business owners because they offer the utmost in efficiency and reliability. Unlike central air systems, ductless systems don’t require the design and installation of ductwork. Instead, they work by pairing an outside unit with indoor air handlers. The units are connected by a small refrigerant line that is passed through the wall of your home. You can use any of the following as part of a ductless system:

  • Electric air conditioners.
  • Heat pumps.
  • Electric heaters.
  • Furnaces and boilers.

Why Choose a Ductless HVAC System?

If you’ve already started shopping for an HVAC system for your new home, you’ve likely noticed that you have many options from which to choose. Make a list of the features that you need in a system before you shop. As you weigh your options, remember that ductless systems offer:

  • Fast, simple installation.
  • Relatively quiet operation.
  • Excellent efficiency ratings.

Selecting The Right Ductless Heating & Cooling System for Your Home

Deciding to go ductless is a great first step toward creating an energy-efficient, green home. If you’ve decided that a ductless system is right for you, you’ll need to take some time to choose the system that best suits your home. Remember that your contractor can guide you through this process and can provide you with information about factory rebates and tax incentives to help ease the burden of purchasing a new ductless system.

Equipment Sizing

Choosing a unit of the right size is absolutely essential. If you choose a unit that is too small, you’ll be left feeling uncomfortable and will need to run the system around the clock. If you choose a unit that is too large, you’ll always be too hot or too cold and may see a big increase in energy costs. In order to choose a unit that is the right size for your home, determine the total square footage of the space that needs to be heated or cooled. Your building or HVAC contractor can help you with these calculations. Ask your contractor for a chart that describes how many BTUs (British Thermal Units) your new heater, air conditioner or heat pump must have in order to meet your demands.

Efficiency Ratings and Rebates

Finding efficient heating and cooling solutions is a top priority for most new homeowners. As you shop, you’ll notice that several different terms are used to describe unit efficiency. Familiarize yourself with the following terms so that you can choose the most efficient unit possible:

HSPF (heating seasonal performance factor) ratings are used to gauge how efficiently heat pumps heat during the cold season. All new units must have a rating of at least 8.6. The higher the HSPF rating, the more efficient the unit.
SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) ratings are used to gauge how efficiently heat pumps and air conditioners cool during the hot season. All new units must have a rating of at least 13. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the unit.

Choosing an energy-efficient unit can also be a great way to earn municipal utility company incentives and manufacturer rebates. You may also be able to take advantage of federal 25C tax credits when you purchase new, efficient HVAC equipment. This credit is only offered through the end of 2013, so be sure to make your purchase soon.

Ductless Features

Of course, choosing a ductless unit that is suited to your home is about more than just paying attention to sizing and efficiency. It’s also about picking a unit that has the features you want. Before you start shopping, consider which of the following features you need in your new system:

  • Zone control to set the temperature in every room or area individually.
  • Dual heating and cooling capacity.
  • Advanced air filters to help remove pollutants and dirt from the air.

Working with Ductless HVAC Professionals

At AC Southeast®, we’re dedicated to helping you find an HVAC contractor in your local area. Use our handy online tools to locate and get in touch with a qualified contractor. Remember that working with an HVAC professional is the best way to ensure that your new HVAC system meets all of your needs.