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Thread: Are there multi-zone ductless systems that are able to be installed in "phases"?

  1. #1
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    Are there multi-zone ductless systems that are able to be installed in "phases"?

    Greetings, and thanks for reading...

    I have a small apartment that I'd like to upgrade from window/wall AC units to a 3-zone ductless system.

    I would like to be able to have the system installed in "phases", starting with just one of the 3 indoor units and the multi-zone outdoor unit.

    Then, probably in a year, I would have the other 2 indoor units installed to complete the system. (I would expect to put in place the line sets for the "phase 2" zones during "phase 1", and connect them later).

    Are there any particular brands/models that can be installed in "phases" like this?

    If so, are there any pitfalls or disadvantages to a "phased" installation?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    The better question is there a contractor willing to install it in phases?

  3. #3
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    You need to contact local contractors to see what say about doing it in phases.

    I will say this I have installed a 1-3 head mini split on phases because the outdoor unit is designed for 3 heads so the btu's/size of the outdoor condenser/heat pump will need to be sized larger then the one head you want to install now.

    Idk if that's even possiable having a outdoor unit designed for three heads and only installing one for now? Is it possiable idk will it work right idk? That's why best to contact contractors in your area and ask.

    Others will be long to post that might be able to answer your question more in deepth to weather it will work or not. As for me have done 1 head with 1 condener all the way to 3 head with one condenser but all were designed to work that way.

  4. #4
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    Thread Starter
    I know two AC contractors, both friends of mine, (I'm an electrical contractor) who are willing to do an install in phases, as long as the brand and model of equipment being installed is OK'd by the manufacturer to be installed in that manner.

    Because these guys are buddies, I'm doing the product research so they don't have to. I'm hoping that rather than me calling the customer service/tech support line for every major manufacturer out there, maybe one of the experts who hang out here will have run into this situation before, and be able to point me in the direction a brand or two that will be OK with this.

    FWIW, I'm not trying to take money out the pockets of the HVAC wholesale network, or contractors, etc etc...as a guy who makes his living the building trades, I GET that...I'm just trying to be efficient about finding the information I need, to know if I can move forward as I hope to, or adjust my plans accordingly if this can't be done.

    If it's not obvious by now, I've posed this question to both my HVAC contractor friends...one thinks for sure there is at least one mfr. who allows this, but can't recall which one, and the other had not encountered this request before, but could not see a reason in theory that would not allow it to happen, if sanctioned by the mfr.

  5. #5
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    Typically will need to do two heads minimum of a three or four zone system. Have to manage refrigerant storage and need at least two heads connected.
    Perhaps you should have read the instructions before calling.

  6. #6
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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by jrbenny View Post
    Typically will need to do two heads minimum of a three or four zone system. Have to manage refrigerant storage and need at least two heads connected.
    Thank you, jrbenny...I was just about to post that I just called several mfrs. and that is exactly the answer I was getting from most (Panasonic, Mitsubishi, LG) LG said min of two heads, which also must have a min. of 50% of the BTU capacity of the outdoor unit....makes sense. Fujitsu said theirs can't do this at all...but might not have understood my question.

  7. #7
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    I have installed Fujitsu in phases. You must have at least 50% of rated outdoor btu's in use. Example: 3 zones total 36 btu's. 1 18 btu, and 2 9 btu's. If you install the 18 it should work. However they do recommend at least 2 heads installed. I have done both ways.

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