Welcome to the second addition in our new series addressing some common myths about ductless heat pumps! In part one we talked about proper sizing of your home or business for the right number of air handlers, or indoor heads. We busted the myth that each room needs it’s own head in order to heat the structure properly. This second myth is related to that one, and is a common misunderstanding surrounding ductless heat pumps.
Here we go.
2. Ductless Heat Pumps provide uneven heating and cooling.
This is really a pretty easy one to believe given the history of single system heating or cooling units in our country. Anyone with a window unit air conditioner or a space heater knows that the area directly in front of the unit will be the coolest or the warmest, and the farther away you get from the unit, the greater the loss of that cooling or heating. Think “cold spots” or “warm spots”, or in other words, very uneven temperature distribution. So when folks see the single head ductless heat pump in a space of 1200 square feet, they expect the same results. But, ductless heat pumps do not work like traditional window air conditioners or space heaters.
Ductless heat pumps do not “create” heating or cooling like a space heater or a free standing air conditioning unit, or even a standard furnace or central air unit for that matter. Instead, ductless heat pumps transfer the heat or the cool from the existing air outside. And as we learned in the first post in this series, ductless heat pumps are made to constantly move the air throughout your home or business. Because of this continuous flow, they are creating a movement of air in your home that distributes the warm or cool air from your head into the entire space that your unit is sized for. This can be 1000 square feet or more, and include the entire floor of a home or business.
The analogy of the warm home on a winter’s day works for this myth too. To quote the first post in this series: “If it is 40 degrees outside and you open the front door and keep it open, eventually your whole house will equalize in temperature to the outside, that 40 degrees. The circulating air from the Ductless Heat Pump is like that open door. It moves the air around the entire space of your home and equalizes the temperature.”
This air movement happens in homes with open floor plans and those without. The air may move a bit more freely in homes with fewer walls and doors, but it will also move in homes that are not built this way. This is because air moves primarily due to temperature changes which influence its density.
So if your new ductless system has been properly sized for your home and its building envelope, then you should not experience uneven heating or cooling. If you do, there is something not quite right and this should be investigated further.