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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    2
    I've done a far amount of searching and reading through posts in the forum and am impressed with the info on this forum.

    Here's my situation and what I'm asking.

    We're in CT and are typically "open the windows" type of folks. We have an attic fan that does an excellent job of cooling the house off provided the outside air is reasonably comfortable. Our heat is a combination of baseboard hydronic (original part of house) and radiant hydronic (staple-up application in an addition).

    I'm considering having a professional install one of the mini-split systems to provide cooling for parts of the house. SEER ratings aren't all that important because we would likely only use the system(s) on the really brutal days like we're having now (90+ temps with high humidity). Use of the A/C would be as much for dehumidification as for cooling.

    Here are some assumptions for you to consider:

    • The primary installation would be in a large sunroom - 24' x 18' with cathedral ceilings that start at 9' and increase to 14'. The air handler would be mounted high (11'-12') on an outside wall on the long axis of the room. The condensor unit would be on a concrete pad close to the air handler. This is the south side of the house. At the other end of this sunroom is a 6' wide opening (used to be a sliding glass patio door) to a 20' x 12' standard height room.
    • Assume the system will be properly sized, which to me means not over-sized. I'm OK with a somewhat undersized system that runs longer to achieve the desired results, especially since that's what appears to be needed for good dehumidifiation.
    • Assume the system will be "properly" installed by an HVAC professional. I realize that having a top-notch HVAC guy/gal doing the work is as or more important as the equipment itself.

    My questions:
    • I need a neat and clean installation to keep the wife happy. Are there any brands that will give a cleaner looking install, from the perspective of walking into the sunroom from the rest of the house and seeing the air handler up on that opposite wall?
    • Of the various brands, which are easiest for you HVAC pros to service? Which brands do you tend to see fewer problems with, understanding that we're probably talking about a mini-split system in the 12,000 BTU range (assuming my understanding of sizing the systems is somewhat correct).
    • The most important equipment factors to me would be lowest profile interior installation, quiet operation, remote control is a must (I ain't crawling up a ladder to turn this on and off!), and reliability/servicability of the equipment. Least important is SEER and, to some degree, purchase cost. What other factors should I consider when looking at systems?

    Thanks for your time and help.

    Rob



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    I wouldn't overlook SEER,13SEER's are available now ,as well as R410a systems,something to at least consider.


    http://www.410a.com for more info..

    I don't think you'll find much difference in the physical size,amoung brands.

    We have had good luck with Fujitsu,most models and brands have a "dry" or dehumidification mode that lowers the cfms ,to reduce the humidity,at a touch of the button.

    The indoor unit won't be as noticable to others as you might think,IMHO.


    With the opening to the other room ,are you intending to cool it as well?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    654
    My experience with duct-less splits is they cool the room where the evaporator is, and not alot more around that. Of course the whole house will be dehumidified wherever you put the blower, but temperature-wise there will be great disparity. That is bothersome to me, maybe not to you. Close off a bedroom and forget about cooling that room all together. I have a similar setup in my home as you described in yours, isn't there some attic space to put a conventional air handler split system?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    2
    Originally posted by dash
    With the opening to the other room ,are you intending to cool it as well?
    I'd expect at least some cooling to occur in that other room. We have a wood stove in that other room and it throws a lot of heat out into the sunroom during the winter, although I do understand a lot of that is radiant heat. We have ceiling fans in both rooms which would help to circulate air between the 2 rooms.

    I certainly would not expect the above to be anywhere as effective as having an indoor unit/evaporator in the smaller room.

    Originally posted by casturbo
    ... isn't there some attic space to put a conventional air handler split system?
    Not in the addition, at least not easily. The addition has a cathedral ceiling with fully insulated roof. There is a small triangle of space in the very peak of the addition roof where we could fit a duct in the sunroom, but getting the ducts out there would be one nasty job. The main house could use a pair of conventional systems if we were doing the whole house - 1 in the attic and one in the basement. Even if we had an air handler in the main house attic, there is no way to run ducting to the addition.

    For the sunroom, I believe that a standalone unit makes the most sense from an installation perspective.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    Ceiling fans do little to move the air from one room to the other.Their function is to make people feel cooler,as such turn them on when you're in, and off when you're out.

    Unles the mini,can throw (push) air thru the door opening to the other room don't expect too much cooling in there,IMHO.

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