Recently, we discussed how split system air conditioning keeps your home cool in summer.
Sometimes however, a split system just isn’t enough to give you the cooling you need.
Your house might be too large.
You might need complete control over your cooling from one central location.
It might even be as simple as you not wanting multiple split system on your walls!
Whatever your reason, a split system air conditioner may not be the most suitable AC system for your home.
Ducted air conditioning installation offers an alternative – but how does it work? And what makes it different from split system air conditioning?
Our air conditioning specialists explain…
Let’s start by breaking it down
To understand how ducted air conditioning keeps you cool in summer, it’s essential to explain the different components in your typical ducted system, and the roles they play in keeping you cool.
Just like your split system air conditioner, there are two main parts.
What role do ducts play in your ducted cooling?
Like the name suggests, ducted air conditioning delivers cool air through – what else? – ducts.
These ducts are installed in your ceiling (or floor), delivering cool air from a central unit throughout your home.
These ducts are the reason ducted air conditioning is so good at maintaining an even temperature throughout your home.
It’s not enough to just install any old piece of tubing. To maximise energy-efficiency, ducting needs to be thermally-efficient.
This minimises heating or cooling loss as air travels between your rooms and air conditioner unit.
What does the air conditioner unit do?
Just like with split system air conditioning, ducted air conditioning systems feature an external unit.
In the case of ducted air conditioning, these are generally mounted on the ceiling in large boxy units.
Inside this box you’ll find:
- Evaporative coils
- Heat exchangers
Unlike split system air conditioning, all of the work happens in the outdoor unit.
Think of it as both halves of a split system, except sized up and combined into the one roof-mounted unit. The only thing the ducts do is distribute the air!
How ducted air conditioning installation keeps you cool
1) What happens when you turn your ducted air conditioner?
When you turn on your ducted air conditioning system, your outdoor unit turns on its fans.
This starts sucking warm air from your home into your vents, which is funnelled to the outdoor unit to be processed.
Once the air reaches the outdoor unit, your ducted cooling system gets to work turning your hot air into cool air.
2) How your outdoor unit turns hot air into cool air
Like we mentioned when we talked about split system air conditioning, air conditioning abuses a loophole in the laws of physics to cool your home.
More specifically, when liquid evaporates and turns into vapour or gas, it tends to absorb heat.
This is known as the “heat pump” principle. Using specialised refrigerants, modern air conditioning systems use this quirk to transform hot air into cool air.
When hot air reaches your outdoor unit, your system runs it through evaporator coils. As it passes through, your system heats up refrigerant, which gets to work drawing heat out of the air.
The result? Refreshing, cool air!
3) The most important step: cooling down your house
Step 3 is to deliver your now-cool air throughout your house. Powerful fans blow the now-cool air through your vents, cooling your house down.
Additionally, ducted systems with zoning feature dividers in your ducts. These allow you to cut cooling off to certain room, allowing you to set different climate levels by each individual room!
4) Recycle recycle!
Refrigerant isn’t an infinite resource. Your air conditioner only has a finite amount of it stored.
This might be a surprise to some. Few of us have had to top up our refrigerant – it’s not too much of a stretch to assume that it’s infinite.
The reason you don’t ever need to top it up yourself? One word: recycling.
Once refrigerant has been used, it gets transferred to another section of the outdoor unit, known as the heat exchanger.
During this process, heat escapes, allowing refrigerant to cool down to usable temperatures again. It’s then pumped through an expansion device that expands it and lowers its temperature even further.
5) Your ducted air conditioning doesn’t hibernate during winter
Reverse-cycle air conditioners make up a significant chunk of ducted air conditioning systems nowadays.
That means instead of taking hot air and absorbing the heat, reverse-cycle systems can take cold air and run it through the same process in reverse.
The upshot is your air conditioner can double as a heater when winter rolls around!
Call Tri-Tech for ducted air conditioning Brisbane
If there’s one key takeaway from this entire explanation, it’s this: ducted air conditioning is complicated.
As such, ducted air conditioning installation should only be carried out by specialist air conditioning experts.
Tri-Tech Air Conditioning specialises in providing high-quality air conditioning services throughout Brisbane.
Our in-depth approach to system design accounts for every possible variable when selecting a suitable air conditioning system for you.
Sunlight, insulation, ceiling space – each of these can impact the feasibility of ducted air conditioning installation.
Want to know more? Unsure if ducted or split is right for your home, office, or store?