mini split air conditioners

FilmCarp
mrincredible said:
Yeah I should have acknowledged that.
You need to run electric to wherever you have an internal unit. Plus a 230V line to the compressor itself. Finally you need coolant supply and return lines to each internal unit from the compressor. This can involve a lot of drilling and patching!
The biggest issue though is you need someone to fill the coolant lines with refrigerant and purge all the air. It takes a trained HVAC specialist to do that. That's one thing an otherwise undaunted DIYer like me can't handle, but finding someone to do just that part of the job is nigh impossible. A large A.C. installation is a lucrative job for an HVAC company so they're not going to do just the one part.

 Some diy systems include precharged hoses, but the choices are limited.



jimmurphy

OK, so theoretically, you have a fully installed system that “has a leak” and needs the hoses purged and charged. 


Inherited from a prior owner, say.


Nobody will come out to do that a price??


mrincredible
jimmurphy said:
OK, so theoretically, you have a fully installed system that “has a leak” and needs the hoses purged and charged. 


Inherited from a prior owner, say.


Nobody will come out to do that a price??

 I honestly couldn't say. I have to imagine you could get a repair from one of the HVAC service companies, and they might even want to sign you up for a service contract. But that's not the same thing as them facilitating a homeowner doing their own AC installation.


Red_Barchetta

I would consider hanging around the shop of one of the service companies, or approach one of the guys when you see them getting coffee or lunch.  It would be after hours or weekend work for the guy, not the company.


fed123
Klinker said:
 I've had the opposite experience.  My ductless units (Fujitsu Halcyons) are much better than my old window units.  They cool better and they are infinitely quieter.  An added bonus is that, while the units were expensive, they are cheaper to run.  
You can run multiple units on one compressor so I think there is an economy of scale.  The per unit cost of multiple units is substantially cheaper than the per unit cost of one.

Got our Fujitsu Halcyons mid summer last year and have been very pleased with them. The best thing is that we can cool our spaces with the dry (dehumidifier) function which saves a lot of money and I suspect is better for the environment. It also has a heating function, though that doesn't compare with our steam system.


FilmCarp
fed123 said:
Got our Fujitsu Halcyons mid summer last year and have been very pleased with them. The best thing is that we can cool our spaces with the dry (dehumidifier) function which saves a lot of money and I suspect is better for the environment. It also has a heating function, though that doesn't compare with our steam system.

 I'd love to ask you a few questions about the heating side of your system, if you don't mind.

  First, do you try to use it as primary heat and delay starting your steam system?  Second, is your house well insulated or drafty? Are you windows new or in good shape?  Third,  do the units heat well nearby, or heat a room well, or fail completely to keep you comfortable? 

 I have put a lot of research into a system, and I am getting quotes to install one.  I would love to be able eventually to replace my beloved steam system (I'm serious - I love steam heat and know it well) to free up space in my basement and allow me to finish it.

   I appreciate your time.


fed123
FilmCarp said:
 I'd love to ask you a few questions about the heating side of your system, if you don't mind.
  First, do you try to use it as primary heat and delay starting your steam system?  Second, is your house well insulated or drafty? Are you windows new or in good shape?  Third,  do the units heat well nearby, or heat a room well, or fail completely to keep you comfortable? 
 I have put a lot of research into a system, and I am getting quotes to install one.  I would love to be able eventually to replace my beloved steam system (I'm serious - I love steam heat and know it well) to free up space in my basement and allow me to finish it.
   I appreciate your time.

 Filmcarp,

I have never considered trying it as a primary heat system and was greatly surprised that it was a possibility. It might work during the fall and spring and maybe even during winter, but my guess is that during winter the costs for us would be exorbitant. The system itself suggests that it works better to maintain a room temperature that has already been reached. So I thought of using it as a  way to maintain the temperature overnight for example but never did the experiment. 


Because the system recommends that you not let it go more than 30 days without usage to prevent an accumulation of moisture, I turned the heat on during the winter every 30 days or so before turning on the furnace. I could tell from that experience that it would take too long for it to get the house to our desired temperature.   One reason for that is our units are near the ceiling rather than near the floor. That works great with the dehumidifying and air conditioning but the heat stays at the top of the room even though the vents are aimed downward. Thus more work for the system.


We installed new windows when we first moved into the house so have very few drafts other than in the attic. In the event that our furnace went down in the winter it is great to know that there is a backup system until the repair person shows up! It might cost a lot in terms of electricity but it will prevent you from getting too cold. 


Also lot also depends on the size of the unit and the size of the room you will be trying to heat. If you make clear that your goal is heat the installer can plan accordingly. A big unit will do the trick for a smaller room.   


gerryl
gonets said:
Marty Spangle installed ours last year. Very fastidious and completed on schedule. Whenever I have question he calls me right back. 
http://spanglebrothers.com/

 I think this is who we used. Did good job. Price seemed fair.


terminator3

Amazon Home Services..... you can go there and schedule somebody to installed your owner supplied ductless unit..... I think the estimate is $1600 for the labor.


Rob_Sandow

Update:  I found Jaws HVAC through Home Advisor.  https://www.homeadvisor.com/rated.JawsHVACRLLC.78332572.html

They agreed to remove an old Mini Split and replace it with the new one I bought from HomeDepot.com for $1000 in labor cost.  It was one guy on a Sunday morning, and it took him about 4 hours.  Not bad.  I highly recommend Jaws.  Now that I know that one person who knows what he's doing could do the job in 4 hours, I am insulted by Jack Frost HVAC, who quoted me $3000, but also by all of the other contractors I talked to who declined the job entirely, saying they only install equipment that they furnish.  

The Home Depot unit was about $700.  So the whole thing wound up costing $1700.  I had to dispose of the old unit myself, easy enough at South Orange Container Day.  They have a separate pile for air conditioners because I assume they have to bring in someone to extract the refrigerant before they can recycle the metal.  


FilmCarp

just to play devils advocate, would you have been happy to pay the $1000 if the equipment didn't work?  He didn't provide it, how can he guarantee it?  Would you have paid him again to install another set?   Would home depot have provided a new set, or claimed incorrect installation?   I can easily understand refusing to install equipment that I didn't provide, if I did AC work.


Rob_Sandow
FilmCarp said:
just to play devils advocate, would you have been happy to pay the $1000 if the equipment didn't work?  He didn't provide it, how can he guarantee it?  Would you have paid him again to install another set?   Would home depot have provided a new set, or claimed incorrect installation?   I can easily understand refusing to install equipment that I didn't provide, if I did AC work.

 

Well it did come with a warranty from Home Depot that was good as long as it was installed by a licensed professional.  Yes I would have had to pay for another installation fee if it didn't work and I had to have it completely replaced.  But that was a worst case scenario.  A similar installation through one of the more established "furnish and install" contractors in the area was closer to $5000, so I was willing to take the chance.  It worked out for me.



phenixrising

We have a Fujitsu split unit which cools/heats our renovated sunporch, which is now insulated. Waaay better than any window unit. Since our sunporch is off the kitchen, it actually cools the kitchen a part of our Dining room. Very efficient unit and an energy saver. The person who installed our unit is below. Good luck!

John D’Archangelo
New Jersey Heating and Cooling
http://njheatingandcooling.com/services.php




In order to add a comment – you must Join this community – Click here to do so.