From window air conditioners to simple baseboard heaters, there are lots of ways to regulate the temperature in your Mesa, AZ, home. However, few are as efficient or as popular as the split-system HVAC. Supported by central ductwork, split systems have indoor air handlers and outdoor condenser and compressor units for cooling. Air conditioners are frequently paired with furnaces that supply warm air when outside temperatures plummet. Read on to learn all about your options in residential heating and cooling systems and to find the right equipment type for your household.

Air Conditioning in Mesa

Residents of Mesa have year-round climate control needs. Although triple-digit temperatures are the norm in summer, winter regularly brings near-freezing conditions. The region is far too hot from June through October to make do with low-efficiency window ACs, overhead ceiling fans, or standing fans alone. Residences require fixed, whole-house cooling solutions to ensure safety and overall habitability.

As such, most new homes in the region are built with central ducting included. Apart from an increasingly scant selection of historic homes, most properties either have central AC or the ability to support it. Many modern houses have AC or heat pump condensers in their back or side yards and indoor air handlers. Connected by copper refrigerant tubing and electrical wiring, these systems extract heat from warm indoor air and funnel it outside. They also regulate indoor humidity and provide limited air filtration.

Heating in Mesa

With nighttime temperatures falling just below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, many Mesa households have either furnaces or heat pumps for heating. Although several states and smaller municipalities have either implemented or attempted to implement bans on natural gas appliances, the State of Arizona has moved to render all bans on natural gas illegal. Thus, there are many homes in Mesa and in surrounding cities that use mid-efficiency or high-efficiency gas furnaces instead of heat pumps or electric furnaces for heating.

Why More Homeowners Are Opting for Heat Pumps

While split-system HVAC systems are the most popular choice for climate control throughout the nation, split-system HVAC that includes heat pumps is fast becoming the most popular choice in Arizona. Year-round, Arizona has the ideal climate for capitalizing on the unmatched efficiency of these heating and cooling systems.

During summer, heat pumps are functionally identical to air conditioners. In winter, these appliances work in reverse by sourcing heat from the outside air and transferring it indoors. In climates like Mesa’s, even entry-level heat pumps can operate at efficiency levels as high as 400% throughout much of the year. This means that they’re capable of producing up to four times as much heating and cooling energy as they consume in electricity.

Unlike fuel-combusting appliances, heat pumps don’t produce carbon monoxide (CO) or other harmful emissions. Along with their high levels of efficiency, they are a great choice for eco-conscious consumers. In fact, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), heat pumps are invaluable for reaching ambitious emissions-reduction goals across the globe.

The Rise of Ductless Mini-Split HVAC Systems

Throughout the nation, ductless mini-split systems are the most popular choice for climate control in homes lacking the ducting to support central HVAC. Like central, split HVAC systems, ductless HVAC systems have outdoor condenser and compressor units and indoor air handlers. However, rather than having just a single air handler, these systems have one air handler in each room or zone.

Ductless mini-split systems can support up to eight indoor zones to provide reliable, whole-house heating and cooling. They’re significantly more efficient than baseboard heaters and window air conditioners. In addition, you can adjust the temperature in each zone independently. This allows homeowners to save on energy costs by not heating or cooling areas, like guest rooms, when they are not being used.

When citing the drawbacks of ductless mini-split HVAC systems, many people note their higher costs. Ductless air conditioners and heat pumps cost quite a bit more than central ACs and furnaces. However, for homes that lack ducting, installing a ductless mini-split system will often prove much cheaper than the total costs of purchasing central heating and cooling equipment and paying for ductwork retrofitting.

Ductless Mini-Split Systems in Mesa

If you have an older home that lacks HVAC ductwork, consider installing a ductless mini-split system. Much like a central heat pump, a ductless mini-split heat pump can provide whole-house heating and cooling with efficiency levels of up to 400%. However, there are also homeowners in Mesa who purchase ductless mini-split systems to heat and cool remote building areas or areas that aren’t fully serviced by their existing HVAC equipment. For instance, you might install a ductless mini-split to condition the air in your:

  • Attic bedroom
  • Recent home addition
  • Sunroom

Ductless mini-split systems are also a popular choice for climate control in attached garages that are used as workshops, rec rooms, home offices, or home gyms.

Popular HVAC Systems Throughout the U.S. Versus Popular HVAC Systems in Mesa

In regions with significantly colder winter weather, the use of heat pumps is far less common. In general, heat pumps are most efficient for heating when outside temperatures are 40 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. Although there are high-performance heat pumps that will continue providing heat when temperatures fall below freezing, these options are less cost-effective than natural gas heating in extreme climates. Due to its more moderate cold season, Arizona has a far greater percentage of homeowners who rely on either central or ductless heat pumps year-round.

For whole-house heating and cooling, ductless mini-split systems are also less common in the region than central, split systems. However, this isn’t due to shortcomings in efficiency or performance. Instead, most modern Arizona homes are built to support central heating and cooling.

Which Option Is Best for Your Home?

For cooling, you can get impressive performance from both central air conditioners and central heat pumps. With smart thermostats, central HVAC zoning, and features like variable speed fans, central cooling technologies will regulate your indoor temperature at a reasonable cost. You can add a ductless mini-split heat pump or AC with a single indoor air handler for remote or under-serviced living areas to avoid the cost of installing additional ductwork.

For many older homes in Mesa, ductless installation is both more affordable and more feasible than ductwork retrofitting. However, it’s important to note that relying on a ductless heat pump for cold-weather climate control will make you wholly reliant on electricity. Electric furnaces and heat pumps produce heat at temperatures between 92 and 97 degrees Fahrenheit. This slow and steady heating takes a bit longer than gas-fired furnaces to warm building interiors up on exceedingly cold winter days or nights. Gas-fired heaters produce heat at temperatures as high as 140 degrees Fahrenheit and are often preferred by homeowners who like intense and rapid heating.

Solar Installations

To curb their energy costs, many homeowners have solar panels installed. Some even have solar batteries for excess energy storage. With buy-back programs available through local utility companies, it’s estimated that consumers can earn between $50 and $700 per month. As such, whether you opt for a split-system HVAC or a ductless mini-split, there are definite incentives for choosing all-electric heating and cooling equipment and supporting it with solar panels.

At Honest Air Conditioning, we have been serving the residents of Mesa, AZ for over 12 years. We install, maintain, and repair heating and cooling systems. In addition, we offer indoor air quality services. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced team members.