I’m a fan of mini-split air conditioners in Boston for certain applications. Because the air conditioners are ductless, they are a great option for a home that doesn’t have heating ducts, and for homes that may already have central air conditioning, but may also have a hard-to-reach hot spot that just never seems to cool down.
Mini-split (or ductless) air conditioners are less expensive to purchase and install than central air conditioning is and they’re efficient, but there are two big caveat you should know about if you’re considering purchasing a mini-split air conditioner online for a DIY installation. Purchasing a mini-split air conditioner system online normally voids the manufacturer’s warranty on the device. Also, not all mini-split units available for sale online have service and support options in case you run into trouble.
If you plan to purchase a mini-split air conditioner online in the hope of saving a few bucks, you’ll probably be able to do just that. If you need service or your unit fails, however, you’ll be out on your own. Before you purchase any mini-split systems online, check the manufacturer’s website and read the terms of their warranty carefully. You’ll need to decide for yourself whether the savings you may find through an online purchase is worth the risk of losing your warranty protection.
Further, before you choose a brand, check the manufacturer’s website to verify that service, support and replacement parts are readily available after your purchase. Some online retailers have no parts and service operations in the United States. You could purchase a unit directly from a manufacturer in China, for example, but you may have no way to get replacement parts or service quickly. That could leave you in a bind over the summer if your AC gives out and you need to wait on a parts delivery from overseas.
The availability of parts and warranty service is very important, and as ductless air conditioners become more popular in the US, these issues will arise more frequently. While you may save a few bucks up front by buying online, you could be spending more on parts and service over the life of the unit. Worse, you may end up replacing the unit prematurely when parts and service aren’t readily available locally.
If you have questions about mini-split or ductless air conditioning systems, give Boston Standard Plumbing & Heating a call at (617) 288-2911. We’ll be happy to consult with you on an existing ductless system, or help you choose a system that meets your needs. Don’t forget to like Boston Standard Plumbing on Facebook!