Can One Mini-Split Cool Multiple Rooms? (With BTU Chart for Room Size)

If you’re in the market for an affordable and reliable mini-split, you may be wondering, can one mini-split cool multiple rooms?

The short answer is yes; a mini-split can cool multiple rooms, but depending on your set-up, it may be less efficient at doing so than central cooling. Just be sure to calculate the number of BTUs necessary to properly cool off the desired area. 

Let’s learn more!

Can One Mini-Split Cool Multiple Rooms?

So, can you cool multiple rooms with a mini-split?

When it comes to cooling down a large space, a mini-split can be a great option. Not only can they cool multiple rooms, but they’re also relatively inexpensive to operate. Plus, they’re small enough to fit in most spaces. That said, there are a few things you should keep in mind when choosing one for your home. 

The first is that mini-splits typically only have one or two fan speeds. If you need more options, you’ll want to look into an electric central air conditioning unit. 

Additionally, if you have large windows that open up wide, be sure to consider a window-mounted mini-split. These units are often quite powerful and can handle large openings with ease.

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What is a Mini-Split Unit?

A mini-split system is a type of air conditioning system that uses a small amount of refrigerant to cool a much smaller area than a traditional air conditioning system. The mini-split system has two parts: an indoor unit and an outdoor unit.

The indoor unit is mounted on the wall near the ceiling, and the outdoor unit is installed on the side of the house. The refrigerant travels between the two units through a small tube.

There are several benefits of having a mini-split system in your home. Mini-splits are extremely efficient and can save you money on your energy bills, they are quiet and compact, so they don’t take up much space, and they provide excellent comfort and control. Mini-splits also offer zone cooling, which means you can cool specific areas of your home to your desired temperature rather than cooling the entire house at once. 

Here are some of the benefits of having a mini-split system in your home: 

  • Size: The size of the mini-split will determine how many rooms it can cool.
  • Efficiency: Mini-splits are very efficient and can save you money on your energy bill.
  • Quiet: Mini-splits are very quiet and will not disturb you while you are trying to sleep.
  • Flexibility: Mini-splits are very flexible and can be installed in any room
Can One Mini-Split Cool Multiple Rooms?

Do You Need A Mini-Split In Every Bedroom?

So how many rooms can a mini-split cool, and do I need a mini-split in every bedroom?

Not necessarily, but it depends upon a number of factors, including the:

  • layout of your house
  • climate you live in
  • relative size/power of the unit you install

Mini-splits are often used in smaller spaces such as bedrooms, kitchens, and bathrooms, though some people utilize mini-split units throughout their houses. The benefits of using a mini-split are that they are very efficient and can cool down a room quickly.

Additionally, they are quiet, so you won’t wake up your sleeping family members. However, there are some caveats to consider before purchasing one.

First, purchasing a mini-split for every bedroom of your home can really add up. Though they might be a cheaper option than adding or replacing a central cooling system, mini-split units aren’t cheap.

Second, they require regular maintenance to keep them running properly, which can be difficult to find in many parts of the United States, as these devices are much more popular in other parts of the world, such as Asia or Europe.

How does a mini-split AC cool multiple rooms?

A mini-split AC cools multiple rooms by delivering cooled air directly into the room through a wall-mounted or ceiling-mounted unit.

The mini-split AC system consists of an indoor unit and an outdoor unit. The indoor unit contains a compressor, condenser, expansion valve, and evaporator. The outdoor unit contains a compressor and condenser. The two units are connected by refrigerant piping and electrical wiring.

A single indoor mini-split unit will have a hard time cooling multiple rooms. A more powerful unit might be able to cool off two rooms, but adding a mini-split is not a good strategy for cooling multiple rooms of your house.

Once the mini-split cools off the room it’s located in, the cool air will begin to seep through connected hallways and into other rooms. However, only the more powerful mini-split systems will be able to cool multiple rooms quickly. I personally have a large mini-split unit in an upstairs bedroom in my home.

Even if I run it on full blast with the door open, it won’t do much to cool the adjacent bedrooms. 

What kind of system do I need to cool multiple rooms?

A multi-zone mini-split cooling system circulates cooled air from a single central unit to several remote units. This type of system is most commonly used in commercial settings, such as office buildings and hotels. The cooled air is distributed through a network of ducts and vents, typically reaching each room via ceiling or floor registers.

A multi-room cooling system can be an economical alternative to installing individual window units or central air conditioning in each room.

To properly set up this mini-split cooling and heating system, you absolutely want a mini-split air conditioner system with the required number of indoor and outdoor handlers and a single compressor.

You can add between one and nine indoor handlers, though outages normally have better results if you keep the number of indoor units between one and four.

How many BTUs do I need to cool multiple rooms?

There is no easy answer to this question. It depends on a number of factors, including the size of the rooms, the climate, and the level of insulation in the home.

Generally speaking, however, you will need more BTUs to cool multiple rooms than you would to cool a single room. This is because when you cool multiple rooms, the air has to travel further, and the temperature has to be maintained more evenly throughout the house.

To calculate the number of BTUs recommended to cool each room, you’ll need to calculate the square footage of the room by multiplying its length by its width. Then you’ll want to multiply that figure by 25.

For example, a 10 ft by 10 ft room has a square footage of 100 (10 x 10 = 100). Taking that number and multiplying it by 25 (100 x 25), you get 2500. Therefore to cool off a room of this size, you’ll need a mini-split unit with 2500 BTUs.

Take a look at the table below to see how many BTUs you’ll need to cool various room sizes.

Room Size (in feet)BTU Rating for mini-split
10×12 feet3000 BTUs
12×12 feet3600 BTUs
12×14 feet4200 BTUs
14×16 feet5600 BTUs
Chart describing how many BTUs you need for a mini-split to cool differently sized rooms

How Long Will A Mini-Split Last?

Some people believe that a mini-split system can last anywhere from ten to twelve years. While this is an approximation, it is a good starting point when calculating how long your mini-split will last.

There are many factors that can affect the lifespan of your system, including how often you use it and how well it is maintained.

What happens if you oversize a mini-split?

Although common sense might suggest that oversizing a mini-split for your room might make it more efficient, the opposite could be true.

If you oversize a mini-split, it can lead to several issues, such as:

  1. Short cycling: Oversizing a mini-split can cause it to cycle on and off frequently, which can lead to increased wear and tear on the system. This can also reduce the efficiency of the mini-split, leading to higher energy bills.
  2. Uneven cooling: Oversizing a mini-split can cause it to cool the room too quickly, leading to uneven cooling. This can result in hot and cold spots in the room, making it uncomfortable for occupants.
  3. Increased humidity: Oversizing a mini-split can cause it to cool the room too quickly, which can lead to increased humidity levels. This can result in a damp and uncomfortable environment.
  4. Higher installation costs: Oversizing a mini-split can require a larger unit and more complex installation, which can increase the cost of installation.

Therefore, it is important to properly size a mini-split for the room you plan to use it in to ensure optimal performance and efficiency.

Can I Run My Mini-Split 24/7?

A mini-split ac unit can be a great addition to your home if you’re looking for an affordable and efficient way to heat your space.

That being said, mini-splits aren’t meant to run 24/7.

In fact, even your central cooling system likely doesn’t run 100% of the time. It usually operates by turning on and off again in response to the thermostat’s temperature readings. A mini-split works much the same way, but typically, users should turn off their mini-split unit when they leave a room.

Running your mini-split 24/7 may eventually lead to mechanical issues with the device.

Can you mix and match mini-split components?

If you’re looking to mix and match mini-splits components, it’s important to understand the differences between them. Mini-splits can be categorized by their function: heating, cooling, or stretching. 

Heating mini-splits use gas or oil to produce heat. Cooling mini splits use air conditioners to produce cool air. Stretching mini splits use a motor to stretch the fabric and increase its flexibility. 

It’s typically best practice not to mix and match mini-split components. For example, if you’re using a Daiken mini-split, you’ll probably want to service that unit with Daiken parts.

Do mini-splits use a lot of electricity?

Mini-splits can use a lot of electricity if you’re not careful. Most mini-splits run on AC power, which means your users will be affected by things like the weather and how many people are in the house.

If you have an older mini-split, you may need to upgrade to a newer model that uses DC power to avoid high electricity bills.

Are mini-splits more efficient at heating or cooling?

Mini-splits are generally considered to be very energy-efficient but they will be more or less efficient at heating or cooling depending on the outside temperature.

If it is very hot outside, a mini-split will be less efficient at cooling your room. If it is very cold outside, a mini-split will be less efficient at heating your room.

One of the main benefits of mini-splits is that they can be controlled individually, meaning that you can adjust the temperature in each room separately. This means that you can tailor the split’s heating or cooling properties to your specific needs, which is great if you live in a drafty house or want to cool down an area quickly. 

Another benefit of mini-splits is that they are very efficient when it comes to energy use.

Are Mini-Splits Worth The Money?

So, are mini-splits worth it?

A mini-split is a cost-efficient way to heat small apartments with open floorplans or a single room in a larger house. However, mini-splits will not be worth it if you have to install multiple units throughout the house – in that case, you are probably better off looking at central heat and air options.

Take a look at your personal situation and see if it makes sense for you.

Let’s wrap up

In conclusion, mini-splits can cool multiple rooms by using separate air handlers in each room. This can be an efficient way to cool your home and can save you money on your energy bill. If you are thinking of installing a mini-split in your home, call a technician to come out and do a consultation. They will be able to tell you which unit is best for your needs.

Chart describing how many BTUs you need for a mini-split to cool differently sized rooms

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