Architects, contractors, and specialty trades all know that having many approaches to solve the challenges of their client’s projects gives them a great advantage. One area where this can be particularly true is in how a building is heated.
No Ducts – Only Architecture
Mini-split ductless heat pump systems are an extremely efficient heating solution for projects with large, open-concept spaces. There are no ducts and vents to install. The conditioned air moves directly from the cassette through the rooms and hallways. And it provides both warm and cool air for all-season comfort. Also, the only connection between inside and out are a couple of pipes for the refrigerant. So no outdoor air pollutants are pumped into your house.
Cool air moves downward. So, mini-splits do a great job of cooling your space. However, in colder months, since warm air rises, the further a room is from the cassette, the less heat reaches it. This can cause ineffective heating and create cool spots/rooms. One solution, of course, is to install multiple cassettes in various rooms throughout the home. However, this quickly gets costly, and requires multiple holes in the exterior walls for the refrigerant plumbing to reach the multiple cassettes. And every penetration of the building envelope increases the risk of temperature exchange with the outside. Sure, a ducted heat pump could be installed instead, but those are also costly and have limits to their effectiveness. Additionally, it means more moving parts that can fail, and increases the chance that refrigerants will leak.
This is where electric, infrared radiant heat comes in as a great supplement to cover insufficiently heated spaces. This solution also requires no ducting and, in fact, no further penetrations in the building envelope. As easy to install as can lighting, it rounds out the system at a lower cost, allows for room by room control. And, with no moving parts, it will likely last as much as twice as long as the mini-split itself.
Less Can be More Appropriate
In the case of small, tightly built ADU/DADUs, and additions, mini-splits are generally overkill both for what the space needs in terms of heating power and often even cooling power, as well as for the client’s bank account. Once again, infrared radiant heat fits the bill perfectly: no mechanical room to add, no ducts, no holes in the exterior walls. Just wire and mount them, and you’ve provided your client with efficient, cozy heat that can readily be controlled with the simplest thermostat or the most sophisticated home management system. Ducoterra ultra-slim, infrared radiant ceiling panels are especially favored by designers as they are completely silent, paintable, nearly invisible, and carry a lifetime warranty.
Retrofitting an Upgrade
If your client needs to replace an hydronic system with a broken boiler or leaky plumbing, or a faulty electric furnace, you will keep their costs down with a brand-new infrared radiant system. And you can get them back the space used up by the boiler and registers, or furnace and ducts. Or, you can get rid of noisy, inefficient cadet heaters and obtrusive baseboards with clean, silent, far more efficient heaters that are up and out of the way.
Cost Effectiveness and Custom Comfort at Scale
Maybe you have a big job like a high-rise condo or office building, and the bathrooms or individuated office spaces need primary or supplemental heat. Wires are much easier and less expensive to install into each of these spaces than hydronic plumbing or forced air ducting. Even multiple head mini-split ductless systems quickly become cumbersome solutions for these rooms. And, at these scales, the costs, especially for installation, rapidly add up. Infrared radiant heat can be the perfect solution to keep costs down, customize, and manage heat distribution to occupied spaces.
Concerns about the new energy code? We’ve got you covered.
Are you a homeowner working with a contractor uneasy about using something they haven’t used before? Let’s all jump on a phone or video meetup.
Call 206.880.1558 or email firstname.lastname@example.org