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Contractor's Voice: Residential Non-Ducted AC Systems

Originally published: 05.01.15 by HVACR Business Staff

Editor's Note: Each month, we'll feature business opportunities from HVACR contractor owners in a featured product category, followed by a short roundup of some of the latest and greatest products in that category.

Ray Grimm
Company: A.W.E. Air. Water. Energy. Inc.
Size: $9 million in revenue
Average Split Systems Sold: 30/year
Website: www.theawefactor.com

When Ray Grimm reinvented his Carol Stream, Ill. company in 2011 as A.W.E. Air. Water. Energy. Inc., his goal was to be able to provide a one-call solution for an entire home's vital systems.

"I want to ensure we're always offering the top quality service, products and work environment and sometimes you have to break down the old to begin anew," Grimm says. "That's challenging but when done right, it can produce incredible results and a great feeling of accomplishment."

Grimm believes it's important to be on the cutting edge,

always offering products that provide his customers with the best possible solutions. With the rise in popularity of ductless systems in North America, A.W.E. Air. Water. Energy. recognizes the opportunity this holds for its business.

"Expanded services have helped grow new revenue sources we did not have in the past," Grimm says. "Ductless systems bring a new revenue stream to the business and allow us to give customers solutions typical ducted systems cannot."

Much of the demand for ductless systems doesn't come from customers, Grimm says, at least not initially. Once his company's comfort advisors offer it as a viable solution to condition a space at a reasonable cost, however, it's a popular choice.

"You can miss the opportunity if you don't bring it up to your customers," Grimm says. "Ductless systems solve a client's need for indoor comfort, and offering it brings more business volume to your company."

Recently, A.W.E. Air. Water. Energy. had a client who wanted to condition one small bedroom, as well as a bathroom.

"There was very little option to run ductwork to these spaces without having to replace a majority of the existing ductwork going to that side of the house," Grimm says. "We solved the problem with a ductless system for a cost of about $10,000 instead of nearly twice that to completely redo the ductwork and HVAC system."

For contractors who don't currently offer residential ductless AC systems, Grimm recommends going to some of the manufacturer training classes and looking at all the available options.

"These systems are a great alternative for conditioning parts of a residence or small business," Grimm says. "It's always nice to have one more option to provide your customers — it just makes sense."


American Standard

American Standard ductless systems are an ideal choice as a retrofit for houses without ducted heating systems, for room additions where installing ductwork is impractical or too expensive, or where the main system lacks capacity to expand, as well as for areas of the home that require additional heating or cooling.

The indoor high wall heat pump is specially designed air vents efficiently reduce operation noise to provide quiet comfort. This ductless system offers efficiency up to 27 SEER. In addition, it has 3D airflow control and can operate down to -4F low ambient conditions.

Visit americanstandardair.com for additional information.



The new Infinity Series is Carrier's most advanced ductless system, offering consumers superior heating and cooling technology in a variety of models and styles. It features a 30.5 SEER rating and is capable of cooling in outdoor temperatures up to 130F and heating at -22F.

It also comes in white and gray finish options and has Wi-Fi controls. In addition to the new ductless Infinity Series, Carrier also has upgraded its existing Performance, Comfort and Toshiba Carrier series single- and multi-zone ductless systems for residential and light commercial uses.

Visit carrier.com/homecomfort for additional information.



Comfort-Aire VMH Series mini-splits use inverter technology to reduce temperature fluctuations while saving up to 40 percent on energy consumption. VMH inverter units reach SEER levels as high as 23.5 for real energy efficiency. All units are ENERGY STAR rated heat pumps, ranging in capacity from 9,000 to 24,000 Btu/h.

Mini-splits are the ideal solution for conditioning areas where adding ductwork is impractical or too expensive. This includes older homes, bedrooms, sunrooms, additions, office spaces, computer rooms, sports arena skyboxes and interior warehouse offices.

Visit comfort-aire.com for additional information.



Daikin introduces new 15 Series and 19 Series wall mount ductless systems, providing energy efficiency and comfort control with an affordable, cost-saving solution. Available in both heat pump and cooling-only applications, these systems feature streamlined, wall-mounted indoor units paired with compact outdoor units with Daikin Inverter technology compressors delivering capacities ranging from 9,000 to 24,000 Btu/h.

The 15 Series provides efficiencies up to 15 SEER and 8.2 HSPF while the 19 Series provides up to 19 SEER and 9.0 HSPF. Both systems come with a 10-year parts limited warranty.

Visit daikinac.com for additional information.



Fujitsu has three wall-mounted ductless split systems with efficiencies up to 33-SEER. The new 9,000 (9RLS3), 12,000 (12RLS3) and 15,000 (15RLS3) Btu models provide up to 33 SEER and HSPF of up to 14.2, making the entire line ENERGY STAR Most Efficient.

Fujitsu's 2015 Halcyon lineup includes 36 single-zone systems with capacity ranges of 9,000 to 42,000 Btu. Mix-and-match evaporators of the multi-zone systems add tens of thousands of more combinations and allow contractors and owners to create the perfect climate control for any size space.

Visit fujitsugeneral.com for additional information.



Haier FlexFit ductless systems allow you to mix and match the same indoor unit to both single-zone and multi-zone outdoor units, effectively reducing the time and cost of inventory management.

Each of the three indoor unit styles (wall mount, slim duct, compact cassette) has its own special features and is available in three or four different Btu ratings — allowing for more than 1,000 possible indoor-outdoor combinations.

Visit haier.com for additional information.



LG High Efficiency Standard Single Zone systems, recognized with the ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2015 designation for their energy saving enhancements up to 21.5 SEER, incorporate advanced inverter technology to maximize compressor efficiency and minimize power consumption.

The systems provide a quiet environment, with the single-zone indoor units operating at sound levels as low as 19 dB(A) in sleep mode. Available in capacities from 9,000 to 24,000 Btu/h, the systems can be controlled through a standard wireless remote or a wireless device, like the Smart AC.

Visit lg-dfs.com for additional information.



Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Cooling & Heating Division introduces the Hyper-Heating INVERTER (H2i) MXZ multi-zone outdoor unit. At 19 SEER, the H2i MXZ is Mitsubishi Electric's first Hyper-Heating INVERTER multi-zone unit for use in residential applications.

A single multi-zone outdoor unit is capable of connecting to up to eight indoor units, making it an ideal solution for whole-home heating and cooling. Available from 22K to 54K Btu/h capacities, the H2i MXZ makes heating and cooling in extreme conditions particularly cost-effective. The units feature 100 percent heating capacity at 5F and guaranteed operation down to -13F.

Visit mehvac.com for additional information.



Panasonic's energy-efficient Exterios E system provides powerful, low-ambient operation for optimum power, control and performance. The 23 SEER system is ENERGY STAR certified and features Panasonic's Inverter technology, which enables the change of power supply frequency, providing flexible operation while using less electricity.

Also featured is Panasonic's ECONAVI technology, which has the ability to monitor and sense when there are people in the room. Through the detection of human activity, the ECONAVI smart technology will automatically adjust the temperature setting for optimum operation.

Visit panasonic.com/hvac for additional information.



Thanks to Samsung's innovative triangle design, the Pearl offers longer, larger and faster airflow. It's exclusive design and engineering delivers powerful cooling performance and cleaner air quality with built-in Wi-Fi capabilities with SEER ratings up to 28. The enlarged inlet port increases air intake by up to 39 percent while the wider front blade ensures a throw of up to 46ft.

For greater convenience, the Pearl operates seamlessly with Wi-Fi controls, allowing users to control myriad functions, including powering the system on and off and setting the temperature.

Visit samsunghvac.com for additional information.



Trane's indoor ductless heating and cooling unit works as part of a ductless mini-split system. Mounted on the wall, the ductless unit offers flexible, high-efficiency heating and cooling for precise comfort without the ductwork.

The 4MXW27 has up to a 27 SEER rating, making it remarkably efficient and environmentally friendly. Its sleep function automatically adjusts temperature based on set sleeping time to maintain comfort in the room, saving energy.

Visit trane.com/residential for additional information.


If you're a contractor owner and you have a business lesson you'd like to share, please email info@hvacrbusiness.com. To have your company's product considered for inclusion in an upcoming Contractor's Voice feature, please fill out the form below.




About HVACR Business Staff

HVACR Business Staff

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