When customers ask about options for new heaters and even new air conditioners today, we’re fast to recommend the ductless system. Reason being, these systems are extremely efficient and very effective in their operation. Rather than function by using a network of air ducts connect to an indoor air handler (like a traditional central air conditioner), a ductless system has an outdoor unit to which you can connect up to 4 indoor air handlers. These air handlers are mounted up high on the walls of the rooms where they’re installed, and can be controlled independently from one another.
There are a variety of advantages to going ductless in your home. But it’s important to remember that these systems are not immune to the need for heating repair in Spokane, WA, especially if you don’t have yours professionally installed or maintained. Given that, we’re going to discuss some unique needs that can come up for your ductless system, if you neglect it.
Water Leaks Behind the Air Handlers
No matter what type of HVAC system you have, at some time or another you will need a repair. But this is one of those repair needs that is specific to ductless systems.
Each wall-mounted air handler is connected to the outdoor unit of your ductless heating and cooling system through a conduit that’s routed through your wall, behind it. This conduit has within it a power line, refrigerant line, and condensate drain line. The drain line removes moisture from the cooling process so that it doesn’t enter your home. These lines can leak, and if this occurs, water will start to develop between the back of the air handler and the wall.
What eventually happens, in this case, is that the wall material weakens, causing the air handler to rip away and fall off. This damages the wall, and can even break the air handler as well.
Broken Air Handler
There’s some good news and some bad news when it comes to having a broken air handler. The bad news is, of course, you have a broken air handler! Whatever room the defective component is in won’t receive conditioned air and therefore won’t be comfortable.
The good news, however, is that the only area of your home impacted will be the one with the broken air handler in it. So if one unit stops working you can still go to other rooms of your home while you wait for a repair technician to come remedy the situation.
Loss of refrigerant actually isn’t a problem that’s unique to ductless systems. However, the potential danger it presents is unique, since refrigerant runs all the way to the indoor air handlers up on your walls. Be sure to keep a close eye on your system so you can take note of any signs of refrigerant loss. This can include a drop in heating or cooling power, or coils icing over in the air handlers. Refrigerant leaks must be accurately located, refilled, and the leak patched up so it doesn’t occur again in the future.
ACI Northwest is here to help with your home comfort needs or concerns. Please do not hesitate to contact us for helpful advice.