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3 Major Differences Between Split and Packaged HVAC Systems
Wednesday, August 05, 2020
Tips to Avoid an HVAC Emergency This Summer

Having the right heating and air conditioning system can mean the difference between comfortable and miserable. In the south, two of the most common systems are split and packaged HVAC units. If you’re considering an upgrade, it’s essential to know the difference. Here are three of the major differences between the two.

#1: The Equipment

One of the primary differences you’ll find when looking at split systems and packaged systems is the equipment. And split systems can be further broken down into air conditioners with a furnace or a heat pump system.

A split system air conditioner includes:

  • An indoor furnace that supplies heat and circulates the air through your ductwork during the heating and cooling seasons
  • A cooling coil, called an evaporator coil, that is attached to the furnace but functions only when cooling is needed
  • An outdoor unit, called a condenser, that contains a coil to dissipate heat and houses your compressor which pumps the refrigerant throughout the system
  • A thermostat
  • An air filtration system
  • Ducts that the air flows through from the heating and cooling unit into the rooms of your home

A split system heat pump includes:

  • An indoor air handling unit that contains an indoor coil that cools the house in the summer and warms it in the winter. This air handling unit will also come with supplemental strip heaters to help out the system when temperatures really drop. It also circulates the air through your ductwork all year long
  • An outdoor unit, called a condenser, that contains a coil to dissipate heat and houses your compressor which pumps the refrigerant throughout the system
  • A thermostat
  • An air filtration system
  • Ducts that the air flows through from the heating and cooling unit into the rooms of your home

A packaged system includes:

  • A cabinet that contains all your air conditioning and heating system components in one nice box that sits outside your home
  • Ducts to circulate the air in your home as well as return air to the HVAC system
  • A thermostat
  • Registers where the air blows into the rooms in your home

#2: Installation

Because there are more components in a split system, the installation can be more complex and take longer. It also means more chances for something to go wrong. The installation of a packaged system may be easier, but there is a greater chance for extensive damage. Because it’s all housed in one unit, if damage occurs, it’s likely to impact more than one thing.

Also, it will depend on the attributes of your house as to which type of system you can go with. Package systems are usually used when there is a low crawl space and a furnace or air handler can’t quite squeeze under the house. There is usually only enough room for the ductwork.

#3: Energy Efficiency

Split systems are usually more energy-efficient than packaged systems. Because all of the components of a packaged system sit outside, they are often subject to the heat and weather, making them work harder to do the same job. Split systems have the cooling and heating components indoors and also have higher energy efficiency ratings.

Are you still confused about which system is right for your home? The team at G+S Heating Air Energy Services can help. And if you want to learn more about the differences between a split system air conditioner and a split system heat pump, visit G+S’s Product Insight webpage where you can watch some great videos that explain the differences.

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