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A divide-and-conquer plan to cool your home

Mini split system can cost less, target individual rooms
Published on Jul 23, 2010

When you're looking for a way to keep just part of your house cool this summer, you might want to consider a mini split air conditioning system. These systems strike a happy medium between individual window or wall air conditioners and central air conditioning, in terms of size, installation cost and operating cost. All air conditioners work the same way, whether they're self-contained in a small window unit or set up in a larger split system. There are three basic components to the system: a compressor, a condenser and an evaporator. A refrigerant material enters the compressor as a cool, low-pressure gas. In the compressor it is compressed, changing it to a hot, high-pressure gas. It then enters the condenser, where the heat dissipates and the gas changes to a cooler, high-pressure fluid.It then passes into the evaporator through a tiny hole, causing the liquid's pressure to drop. The liquid changes back into a gas, and as it does so it absorbs heat from the air around ...

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