Similar to central air conditioners, split air conditioning units employ a split or divided design, but utilize air ducts to make them less costly to install than their central air counterparts. One unit, the air handler, is located inside the air conditioner, while the other unit, the compressor, is located outside of the housing. Some split air conditioning units feature multiple air handlers all driven by a single compressor.
Split air conditioning units vary in size and BTUs (British thermal units). BTUs mean the measure of heat extracted from a dwelling for the purposes of cooling. Determining the correct BTUs needed for any system, including split air conditioning units, can save you money. An average living room, for example, at 15 x 20 feet, needs an 8,000 BTU unit to keep it comfortably cool.
By purchasing split air conditioning units in the appropriate size and BTU capacity, homeowners not only save in initial purchase costs, but also in overall energy savings. Another thing to keep in mind when purchasing any type of unit is the amount of shade from trees or large shrubbery.
These plants can play a major part in determining how much energy is necessary to cool a home in the heat of the summer, which is growing time, when all plants, both evergreen and deciduous, are leafed-out. So add or subtract BTU accordingly, more if your home is situated on a hot, dry lot or less if you are fortunate enough to have a home surrounded by trees and tall hedges.
Split air conditioning units make for greater energy efficiency and they also provide a quieter living environment than traditional window-unit air conditioners. Although their initial costs are higher, and it does require the expertise of a certified HVAC installer to have them put in, these factors are soon outweighed by the long-term benefits of split air conditioning units.
So the next time you are considering cooling your home, keep split air conditioning units in mind. With the pros outnumbering the cons, you very well may find that installing split air conditioning units is the right cooling choice for you.