All you need to know about split system air conditioning
After an extended episode of rainfalls, temperatures are slowly rising up to mid 30s, making way for summer to settle in Australia. But before you set the thermostat to “full speed ahead”, take a moment and review “the good, the bad and the ugly” of your AC unit. Here is everything you need to know about your split system air conditioner.
What is the mechanism behind a split system?
A split air conditioner, as the name implies, consists of two separate parts: the indoor unit that has an evaporative coil and the outdoor unit, featuring the compressor and the condenser.
Think of it like an advanced filtration system. Technically, the system works by extracting hot air as well as humidity from the inside of the building and directing it outside through the compressor. Alternatively, the refrigerants inside the compressor cool air from outside and transfer it through copper pipes (also known as “line-set”), where the chilled air is evenly blown throughout in the room.
What is a split system suitable for?
Split air conditioners have become very popular on the Australian market, being considered a practical cooling and/or heating option. However, this doesn’t mean it is the ideal choice for every household. As a matter of fact, we recommend using a split system air conditioner if:
- You need to cool one larger room (where a portable system wouldn’t handle the pressure)
- You live in a building that is suitable and approved to have a split system installed
- You want to cool up to 4 rooms (then, choosing a multi-split over a ducted system may be wiser)
What are the benefits of a split system?
- User-friendly device
The split air con is quick and easy to operate, temperature being easily adjusted with the help of a remote control.
- Versatile and cost-effective installation
Unlike a window air conditioner, a split system can be installed almost anywhere. Since no major changes of the building are required, installation of a split AC also becomes less expensive than a ducted system installation.
- Low maintenance costs
The indoor components of split system air conditioners contain filters which can be easily removed and cleaned by the owner as DIY practice. Combined with a regular professional check at least twice per year, it delivers an optimal performance.
- Multi-purpose unit
If you don’t live in a climate where “Cooling-only” option is enough, then we highly recommend a “Reverse cycle” split system. Having both cooling and heating capacities and offering many extra features, such as remote control options, timer, humidity control etc., it can be successfully used as a “2 in 1” device, all year round.
- Air purification
Another quality of a split system is that it purifies the air, keeping it fresh and free of dust or other allergens. This is a great benefit if you or any family members suffer from allergies or asthma, helping one to breathe easier.
What are the drawbacks of a split system?
Split systems may not be appropriate for multi-storey apartments because of the two-part system featured. Additionally, the tubing connecting the units is limited to a certain length, that’s why reviewing this aspect is very important before installing the air conditioner.
Normally, traditional air conditioners such as window units may be a lot cheaper to buy as well as to get installed compared to the split systems. In the end, it’s quality, efficiency and comfort that make the difference.
While usually whisper-quiet on the inside, the outside compressor of a split system air conditioner can be quite noisy, so just keep your neighbours in mind when looking for a suitable location.
Until next time, enjoy the warm, sunny days!
Your friend and AC expert,