A ductless mini-split system includes an air conditioner and heat pump. In addition to providing year-round comfort, this setup may be installed as a DIY project. But as experts in ductless installation, we at Oregon Ductless don’t recommend it. We will explain why you should hire a mini-split installer and not take the risk.
Should I Install a DIY Mini-Split?
A DIY mini-split can be just as reliable and efficient as any other unit. It is well-suited for a property with a non-ducted heating system, a room addition, or a hard-to-reach area. Some of the advantages of a DIY system include:
- Save on the labor of installing the system.
- A single-zone ductless system can be connected with ease.
- The steps to installation are clearly explained in the instructions.
- The line sets are precharged, so connecting coolant and electrical lines are simpler.
- You choose where to install the units, such as a room with high sun exposure.
- No ductwork is needed inside walls, ceilings, or other difficult areas.
But just because it’s possible to DIY install a mini-split system, that doesn’t mean you should. Saving money upfront doesn’t mean you’ll save later. Ductless mini-splits are efficient and will save you over time, but if you make a mistake, you might not experience the efficiency benefits while incorrect installation can lead to costly damage. But those aren’t the only reasons you need a mini-split installer.
Why It’s Best to Hire a Technician
Some of the reasons to hire a professional to install a mini-split system include:
- Many states, including Oregon, require a licensed professional to perform HVAC services.
- Installation requirements can vary depending on the HVAC unit and manufacturer.
- An AC system requires secure connections as a refrigerant leak can be dangerous.
- A mini-split requires an electrical hookup, including from the breaker panel to a disconnect switch, and from the switch to the unit.
- Installing a mini-split isn’t always as easy as it looks; a professional can anticipate any challenges.
Also, consider the steps for installing a ductless mini-split system and whether these are something you are confident handling on your own. The process will require you to:
- Choose the Right System: If you’re installing a system for your entire home, and not just one room, a professional must set up the refrigerant lines. A technician should assist in picking the right system, whether a single-zone, dual-zone, or multi-zone mini-split is best suited for your home. Capacity is another issue; the system must be the right size, in British Thermal Units (BTUs) or too big or too small a unit won’t provide sufficient heating or cooling. Sizing a system requires considering square footage and other factors.
- Navigate the Installation Process: When installing a mini-split, selecting the best location on an exterior wall is crucial. The air handler must have sufficient space around it and not be near a heat source. There shouldn’t be any obstructions in the outside area of this location either. Running the conduit requires locating wall studs, drilling through the wall, running refrigerant pipe, mounting the indoor unit to the wall, and other tasks.
- Set Up the Outdoor Unit: Specialized hardware is needed to mount the outdoor unit after a suitable location is chosen. The unit will have to be secured to a pad and all the pipes and tubing included must be properly connected and secured. If the lines need to be charged, you’ll need a mini-split installer as this can be very dangerous. Professional tools are required as well.
Even if you were to attempt the mini-split installation yourself, you’d need to consult with a professional afterward. Their expertise, and permitting requirements, will help ensure all hardware is safely installed. At the very least, this should give you peace of mind. We strongly recommend hiring a technician so your mini-split is installed without a hitch.
Oregon Ductless Has Experienced Mini-Split Installers
At Oregon Ductless, our team is trained to quickly install ductless systems and anticipate and manage any unforeseen circumstances. We can replace a ductless system or help you switch to one. For each project, we factor in the proper size of the system, its energy efficiency rating, your zoning preferences, and your budget. To learn more about our services, schedule an appointment, and receive a detailed quote, contact us online or call 503-755-5332 now.