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Case Studies

Apr 16, 2021 3:16:18 PM by Ron Musser

Ductless AC and Heating: Re-Imagining Home Comfort In New Hope, PA

PROBLEM: The Bennetts historic New Hope home didn't have ductwork, a basement, or an attic. They did not want to give up space in the house to add ductwork and also didn't want to drastically alter the home's look.

SOLUTION: ECI Comfort installed a multi-zone Mitsubishi Ductless Mini-Split system in the home. The Bennetts went with different setups for each room of the home to fit their heating and cooling needs and aesthetic concerns perfectly.

After living all over the world, John Bennett and his family decided to settle in New Hope, Pa. And to make their new house truly their own, they carried out several renovations, including outfitting the entire house with Mitsubishi Ductless Mini-Split systems for heating and cooling. 

Listen to John tell us why he chose Mitsubishi systems and why he went with ECI to handle a complex project like this one.

The Bennetts had many reasons for choosing these systems over other HVAC options. But perhaps the most practical reason for their choice was the home itself; their historic house didn’t have ductwork, a basement, or an attic. 

With a new traditional furnace or central air system, the family would have to give up closet space and build out a room to house the unit. Additionally, installing ductwork would drastically alter their ideas for the home’s new look. Not to mention it would add thousands of dollars to the project -- and they still wouldn’t get the custom heating and cooling they wanted.

Luckily, the family had ductless systems in two previous homes, so they had a good idea of how they worked. This time around, they made the decision to invest in a Mitsubishi system, one of the smartest technologies one can get for heating and cooling. 

In this case study we’ll take a virtual walk through the Bennett's newly-renovated home and see how each piece of Mitsubishi equipment they chose fit every room and family member perfectly. 

Mitsubishi Ductless and ECI Comfort 

Zoned HVAC with Mitsubishi ductless customizes comfort

While doing their homework, the Bennetts recognized the full range and outstanding quality of Mitsubishi products; and after carefully comparing the specs of several brands, this one was the clear winner.

And when it came time to find an installer, Mitsubishi recommended ECI. We’ve served the Delaware Valley for over 30 years and we are certified installers for Mitsubishi products!

The Bennetts needed a company that would work closely with them for the long haul and make sure that their dream home became a reality. Moreover, John of course wanted the install done correctly, and wanted it done by a company that would also handle the maintenance for years to come. So the combination of our experience, expertise, and reputation for excellent customer service were big draws for the family. 


Maintenance and Warranties

Another upside of working with ECI and Mitsubishi Electric is that a twelve-year warranty is offered on all the units -- and the best part is, we take care of the documents for you! No worrying about collecting serial numbers and model information, filling out all the paperwork, and making sure everything gets submitted on time. ECI worked with Mitsubishi to handle everything and guarantee a smooth experience for the Bennetts.

In addition to the warranty, John signed up for our service contract for annual preventative maintenance. Having the units checked out regularly keeps the warranties valid and ensures the system is always in great shape.

Now, let's see how the project turned out!

Virtual Install Tour

High-wall unit in the home office

Mitsubishi ductless air handler in a New Hope, PA home officeJohn went with a standard setup for the ductless AC and heat in the home office.

This room features the most common air handler you’ll see: a high-wall unit a few feet wide and hanging in the corner of a wall near the ceiling. As you can see, we were able to keep it out of the way and mounted on exposed brick that was painted the same color as the air handler. 

While the high ceiling in the room could cause problems with efficient heating and cooling for other HVAC systems, Mitsubishi air handlers avoid any issues by using heat sensors in the unit that detect warm or cold spots and direct the fan toward them. 

Whisper-quiet heating and cooling in the living room

Ductless ceiling cassette in a New Hope, PA living room The Bennetts chose a ceiling cassette air handler for the living room. These are recessed into the ceiling, so they blend in well with the open-space layout. 

With a larger space like this — versus, say, a bedroom or home office — these models can circulate enough air to heat and cool the entire room. The best part is, you can't feel the air moving around and can't hear it, either — a significant advantage in a room with a TV.

“The biggest thing I noticed is that they’re phenomenally quiet,” John said. “They are totally unobtrusive. You can sit almost underneath the unit and watch television without any interruption at all.”

Ducted air handler in the master suite

Air handler with short-duct run for a master suite in a New Hope, PA home

For the master suite, John and his wife went with a different system: an air handler with a short ducted system to treat the bedroom and bathroom.

“We didn’t want the standard wall unit in every room,” explained John. “We wanted a variety.”

In this case, the bathroom didn't have enough space for even the smallest wall-mounted unit, so we ran two ducted vents from one air handler. 

This setup takes up less space while still providing the same comfort and energy efficiency. And John and his wife still control the temperature with a thermostat that's just for the master suite.

Ductless floor unit in the guest bedroom

Low-wall or floor air handler for a guest bedroom in New Hope, PA

The Bennetts went with a floor unit as the more aesthetic choice for the guest bedroom rather than the more common high-wall units. 

John’s wife and daughter are “HGTV fanatics,” he said, and they felt a standard wall unit would be too noticeable in this room. Since the room is smaller, a unit that sits very low and close to the floor was the better option for them.

To fit this unit, the family moved the bed from under the window to an opposite wall, concerned that the air handler would be too loud for someone right next to it. But it turned out the redesign wasn’t needed. John explained that the unit is quieter than a ceiling fan and that it fit the room — and his family’s expectations — perfectly. 

“This looks much more attractive for us,” he said. “It’s exactly what they wanted.”  

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Ductless in an artist's space

Standard high-wall Mitsubishi ductless air handler in New Hope, PA

The Bennetts’ daughter, an artist, needed as much wall space as possible in her room, so they went with a high-wall unit here. The high-wall unit takes up less space than the low-wall air handler. 

John’s daughter was specific about where she wanted the unit placed and we had no problem honoring that request. And when we took into account the layout of the other rooms, we realized it would be easy to connect the line set from this unit to the one coming from the air handler in the office downstairs. This made the work outside much less noticeable. 

Putting It All Together

With everything laid out for the interior, the next step was figuring out how to connect it all to the heat pumps. 

The air handlers and heat pumps connect through flexible line that circulates a special refrigerant liquid that carries thermal energy. After that, each air handler has a power supply cord and a condensate line that gets rid of moisture when humidity condenses back into liquid. 

All three fit neatly into a line set that’s only a few inches wide. That’s sort of the secret to ductless: we can place the units just about anywhere because it’s so easy to hide those line sets. 

Connecting the heat pumps

Hyper-Heat heat for New Hope, PA home with no attic, basement or ductwork

This job was a little unusual -- since this house didn't have an attic or basement to run lines through, we had to get a little creative.

Based off the size of the home and amount of air handlers, the solution was to go with two outdoor pumps instead of one. Fortunately, these units are usually no larger than traditional outdoor AC condensers. And, once again, they’re much quieter. 

Custom Heating and Cooling That Fits Any Design Choices

heat pump and line casing for ductless HVAC in a New Hope, PA home

The last piece of the puzzle was the line set casing, which houses all the wires that lead from the house to the outdoor heat pump. 

The Bennetts chose a casing with a color that matched the house when they first bought it. However, part of the renovations included painting the outside of the home a new color, leaving them with the options to paint the casing or leave it as-is to create an accent to the new color.

Like every aspect of the project, John and his family were able to choose an option that fits how they wanted their home to look. And they didn't have to sacrifice any of the home comfort they wanted from their heating and cooling system.

In fact, after speaking with John four months later, he said everything worked even better than they thought it would!

ECI is happy to welcome the Bennetts to the area, and we’re honored to have been able to make sure their home is comfortable for the years to come. 

If you’re ready to re-imagine your home comfort, click the buttons below or give us a call at 215-245-3200 for a free consultation. We’ll look at your home’s unique features and layout and help you create a customized heating and cooling system that’s just right for you and your family.

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This entry was posted in Bucks County, Mitsubishi Electric, Ductless, New Hope, PA