Choosing the right mini-split system for your home can be a puzzle if you don’t know what factors to consider. But we don’t want you to sit on the fence too long. We have considered all the variables to create this easy-to-use guide that will help you choose the best 9000 BTU mini-split.
The most vital information you need when shopping for a 9000 BTU mini split heat pump is the size of the room. The ductless air conditioners and heat pumps we have reviewed will work efficiently in rooms up to 400 square feet.
If you don’t know the size of your room, don’t worry. You don’t have to be a mathematician to figure it out. Measure the room’s square footage and ceiling height, particularly if you have high ceilings. You can then plug the data into a BTU calculator to get the right size of ductless mini split.
Best 9000 BTU Mini Split Reviews
1. Pioneer 9,000 BTU Mini Split Air Conditioner
Suitable for rooms measuring 250 to 350 square feet, this 9,000 BTU Pioneer mini-split is a great servant for small spaces. It uses standard electric outlets (110-120 V) and produces up to 9,000 cooling BTU. With an inbuilt heat pump, it can also serve as a heater during the colder months. The heating capacity is even higher, at 10,000 BTU, though the actual heat output can vary from 5,400 to 10,900 BTU/hour depending on various factors.
With regards to efficiency, the Pioneer does brilliantly. When cooling, the unit performs at a 19.5 SEER rating, which is a very high rating for a 9,000 BTU air conditioner. Heating is just as efficient, with the Pioneer rated at 10.0 (again, remarkably high among air conditioners in its category). According to AHRI Estimated Annual Operating Costs, you’ll spend just $67 per year for cooling and $213.00 for heating using the Pioneer.
The unit operates silently. The indoor component produces just 38 decibels at the high setting and as little as 25 decibels when on the low setting. The outdoor compressor, meanwhile, generates 52 decibels throughout. The Pioneer is also lightweight and thus easy to handle during installation or maintenance. The indoor unit, for instance, weighs a paltry 22 pounds!
There are other options if you have a large room including18,000 btu mini split, 12,000, 24,000 and 36,000.
- Ultra-high inverter-type compressor
- Indoor air handler produces just 22 decibels.
- Lightweight thus easy to handle
- Cloud programmable wireless internet remote access
- Cooling, heating, dehumidification, and ventilation modes
- Poor quality materials used for outdoor unit hence not able to stand extreme weather conditions.
2. Senville 9,000 BTU SENA-09HF/Z Mini-Split
Energy Star rated for its ultra-high efficiency and performance, Senville SENA-09HF/Z is another excellent AC for homeowners looking for a small room mini-split. While the unit cannot air condition the entire home, it works brilliantly in spaces ranging from 100 to 500 square feet.
Top on this unit’s impressive list of features is the follow-me remote function. This feature allows you to control the air conditioner from miles away. Another standout feature is the built-in thermostat that enables you to gauge a room’s temperature from the remote control device. That means you don’t have to stand next to the indoor air handler to read the temperature in your room; you can do so from the remote control display.
The Senville package comes with everything you need, including a complete installation kit with a 16-foot copper line set, variable-speed compressor, and DC inverter (to minimize electric consumption).
For a large room, especially 500 square feet and above, you can check other options from our 12,000 btu mini split review.
- Energy Star and AHRI certified
- Whisper Technology for ultra-silent operation
- Remote control for easy access to settings
- Comes complete with an installation kit
- A tad expensive for a 9,000 BTU mini-split
3. Senville SENL-09CD Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat Pump
Another Senville on the list, the SENL-09CD mini-split packs enough power to effortlessly cool spaces up to 500 square feet. On top of that, it also features an in-built heat pump that can prove invaluable during the cold season.
A 4-in-1 air conditioner that also functions as a dehumidifier and fan, the 09CD works even in freezing-cold temperatures. It will heat your room even when outdoor temperatures dip below -5⁰F. Another great thing about the AC is its remote control. The programmable infrared red remote control allows you to set desired indoor temperatures in advance so you can continue with your other tasks uninterrupted.
Finally, as with other Senville mini-split air conditioners, the SENL-09CD makes use of Whisper Technology for noise-free operation. The unit is ideal for bedrooms, additions, smaller living rooms, and other small-space applications. It comes with a complete installation kit, with a 16-foot copper line set included.
- Ideal for most small rooms
- The programmable remote control is a big bonus.
- Whisper technology ensures a noiseless operation.
- The low-ambient operation provides heating even in freezing conditions.
- Requires professional installation
4. Mitsubishi 9,000 BTU Mini Split
This is the most expensive 9,000 BTU mini-split heat pump on this list. However, it comes with some features that make it have the edge over some of the less expensive brands on the market.
First, this system is designed to keep your space comfortable every day of the year. As a single zone system, it is ideal for small rooms, including bedrooms, home offices, and smaller residential spaces.
What makes the Mitsubishi 9,000 BTU mini-split different from other units is its multiple operating modes. Apart from the obvious cool and heat modes, there is a dry mode that can remove up to 1.5 pints of excess moisture every hour.
With a 24.6 Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER), you’ll have maximum efficiency no matter the season. The “Econo Mode” on the other hand, will automatically direct the airflow to spaces that need it the most. The advantage of this is that it not only leaves your room comfortable but also helps reduce your energy bills.
You don’t have to struggle to install and use this unit. There is an intuitive remote control that will make it easy to change the operating mode, adjust the fan speed, and raise or lower the temperature depending on your needs.
- Perfect for all seasons
- Energy efficient
- Has a moisture removal mode
- Multiple speed fan
- Easy to operate
- Programmable timer
- Automatic restart
- Anti corrosion to protect outdoor unit
- More expensive than many other 9000 btu mini splits
5. Daikin 9000 BTU Mini Split
The Daikin 17 Series 9,000 BTU Ductless Mini Split Heat Pump is perfect for year-round use in rooms between 350 – 400 square feet. This unit is designed with variable inverter technology, which enables it to cool and heat while operating at 70% efficiency.
Apart from heating and cooling, there are also four fan speed settings with a dry mode, an auto mode, sleep mode, and programmable timer. It comes with all the necessary installation hardware. The outdoor unit is protected from corrosion thanks to the bluefin aluminum technology.
But what’s really standout about this unit is how quiet it is. At just 23 dB indoors and 45 dB outdoors, you can run it during your quiet hours even when sleeping at night.
Other features you’ll love about this unit include a remote control with a signal, auto defrost, fault-diagnostics, louvers, air filter, adjustable thermostat, programmable timer, and ETL-Certification.
- Energy efficiency with inverter technology
- Various operating modes
- Low decibel ratings
- Auto defrost
- Sleep mode
- Programmable thermostat and timer
- A little more expensive
Ductless Mini Splits Buying Guide
As you can tell from the models we have reviewed, ductless mini splits systems come in a wide range of shapes and styles. To find one that perfectly suits your needs, you’ll have to shop around a bit. The following are some of the things you should keep in mind.
What are Ductless Mini Splits?
A ductless mini-split system is an air conditioner that comes with two units that work as one: an indoor and an outdoor unit.
The indoor unit, also known as the air handler, is usually suspended from the ceiling or hanged on the wall. It’s tasked with sending cool (or heated air, depending on the settings) into the room.
The outdoor unit, also known as compressor or condenser, is placed outside the house and responsible for absorbing heat from air before it is released inside the house.
The two units (air handler and condenser) are connected via refrigerant tubing, also known as line sets. These line sets transfer cool and warm air between the indoor unit and the outdoor unit depending on whether you’re cooling or heating the room. The indoor and outdoor components are also connected via electric cables.
Heating Versus Cooling in Ductless Mini Splits
Although mini splits are primarily used for cooling indoor air, the majority of 9,000 BTU units and other large units double us as space heaters. This is made possible by in-built heat pumps that apply the reverse working mechanism of the air cooling process.
In an AC-only mini split, heat is removed from indoor air and the heat transferred outdoors through the condenser unit. In-built heat pumps work the other way round. They extract heat from outdoor air and pass the heat to your indoors.
Everything else remains the same as the air cooling process, except that heat is dumped inside the house rather than outside (as is the case when cooling the home).
Whether you’re cooling or heating the home, heat is extracted using an extremely cold refrigerant. Most mini splits use R410A refrigerant.
If the refrigerant is colder than the air outdoors, heat can be absorbed with ease since heat naturally flows from warmer to colder bodies. Remarkably, advanced refrigerants can absorb heat even when it’s freezing outside! Some perform exceptionally well, even in temperatures as low as -4F (Fahrenheit). If you can find a mini-split with a heat pump rated at less than -4F, that would be a huge advantage.
Multiple Zone Cooling (and Heating)
The other thing you need to take very seriously is the number of zones the system can cool (or heat) at a go.
Large mini split air conditioners can come in single or multi-zone configurations. The difference lies in the indoor unit. In single-zone air conditioners, there’s only one indoor unit, meant for a single space/room, thus the name “single” zone. Multi-zone mini splits, meanwhile, have two or more indoor units connecting to one outdoor condenser, while some having as many as five indoor units.
Each of these units can be installed in a separate room, or you could have two or three units installed in different locations within the same space (if working with a large space). A mini split with two indoor units is commonly called a dual-zone AC, those with three indoor air handlers are commonly referred to as tri-zone ACs, and those with four indoor air handlers are known as quad-zone air conditioners.
The most important thing to remember about multi-zone mini-splits is that each air handler can be controlled separately. Unlike with central air conditioners where all components are controlled from a single control center, in multi-zone mini splits, each indoor unit has its own thermostat for independent control. As such, you can adjust temperatures or even shut down the air handler in one room without interfering with the functioning of the air handler in the adjacent room.
Advantages of Ductless Mini Splits
There are many reasons why you should choose ductless mini splits systems over traditional air conditioners. These include;
- Energy efficiency: Whether you’re using the mini-split for cooling or heating, you’re guaranteed much higher energy efficiency than using a conventional air conditioner. For the best performance, choose an Energy Star Certified model with a high SEER (17 or more) and HSPF (9+) rating.
- Multi-zone function: If you’re looking for convenience, multi-zone mini splits will, without doubt, impress you. A multi-zone mini split allows you to cool/warm up to five spaces simultaneously while controlling the cooling or heating in each room independently!
- Quiet operation: Ductless mini splits are some of the quietest air conditioners on the market. With the louder condenser located outside the house and the indoor air handler designed with innovating technology for noise-free operation, most of the time you won’t even remember that the AC is running.
- Multi-functional: Finally, ductless mini splits are also an excellent investment because they aren’t just home coolers but can also be used for home heating, dehumidification, and even fan-only operations.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a 9,000 BTU Mini Split
Although 9,000 BTU ductless mini split air conditioners share many features, including size, there are variations between manufacturers and even across models. Consider the following key factors when making the purchase;
Size of the Room
Like we mentioned earlier, we recommend using a 9,000 BTU mini-split for spaces ranging from 351 to 400 square feet. If your space is smaller or larger, size up or down on BTUs as appropriate.
Still on size, though, poorly insulated homes (especially older homes) and homes in generally warmer climates may require higher more cooling power (BTUs). For poorly insulated areas, we recommend adjusting your BTU upwards by 20% while for warmer climates with an average yearly temperature of 90⁰F, adjust the BTU requirement upwards by 30%.
There are four main types of ductless mini splits; wall mounted, ceiling recessed, floor mounted, and concealed units.
- Installed on the wall, wall mounted units are the most common of the lot because they’re the cheapest and easiest to install. They are best for smaller rooms.
- Also known as cassettes, ceiling-recessed types are installed into the ceiling and send air in four directions. They require at least 10 inches of clearance above the ceiling.
- Floor mounted options rest on or near the floor and send air towards the ceiling.
- Finally, concealed mini splits sit above a soffit or ceiling, with only the drills visible.
Mini split air conditioners use two main types of condensers; rotary and variable-speed (inverter).
It is in your best interest to choose a mini split that uses inverter-type compressors. Unlike rotary compressors that shut ON and OFF to maintain indoor temperatures, inverter-type compressors calibrate refrigerant flow to precisely meet indoor cooling needs. The use of variable speeds rather than ON/OFF operation to control indoor comfort is not only more energy efficient but also better for the appliance’s health/life.
Finally, any extra convenience features such as remote control, built-in occupancy sensors, programmable timers, and resalable filters should also be considered.
The bottom line is that ductless mini split air conditioners are a step up from traditional central AC systems. They are more energy efficient, give you greater control, and come with several extra features for optimal indoor comfort all year round. But, you must get the sizing right. If you’re buying a 9,000 BTU model, it should be for a space measuring around 400 square feet. If the room is significantly smaller or larger, find a smaller or bigger mini split as appropriate.
Ronald Watford, the owner of Quality Home Air Care, is a qualified HVACR technician and manages the team of expert writers on this site. He believes that educating homeowners about HVAC systems is one of the most impactful aspects of his job.