5 Best Mini Split Heat Pump For Cold Weather

Just like air conditioners, you can now buy a ductless heat pump for your home! Better still, you can buy an air conditioner with an in-built heat pump so you can use it for both cooling and heating. During the warmer months, you can use the unit to blow fresh, cool air into the home, and, when the cold weather sets in, use the same unit to add warmth to your indoors.

This guide is designed to help you select the best mini split heat pump for cold weather. Among other things, we explore the different types of mini split systems, discuss how they work, and round up with factors to consider when choosing such a heater. Before that, though, let’s review the top rated best mini split for heating in cold climate.

Here are the Top 5 Best Mini Split Heat Pumps For Cold Weather

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


1. PIONEER Air Conditioner Pioneer Mini Split Heat Pump

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

 

An ultra-high efficiency dual function AC + heat pump, this ductless mini-split uses inverter technology for quiet heating and cooling. The heat pump has a capacity of 25,000 BTU/hour with an efficiency of 10 HSPF, while the AC has a cooling capacity of 24,000 BTU/hour with an efficiency of 20.5 SEER. The high -wall-mounted cooling and heating system is digitally controlled and can also work as a dehumidifier or a ventilator. 

When it comes to features, the heat pump features various modes for optimal comfort. These include Sleep Mode for quiet, efficient operation when you go to sleep, and an Auto Mode that allows you to pre-program the heater. Emergency start, 2-way draining, follow-me remote, and chassis heating are the other significant features.

 The package contains the indoor unit, outdoor condenser, a wireless remote control, an installation kit, a flare connection leak-guard sealer, an installation manual, a user’s manual, and the manufacturer warranty document. Users enjoy a 5-year limited warranty on the compressor and a 2-year limited warranty on other parts. 

Pros

  • Inverter condenser technology
  • Anti-cold air function
  • Intelligent ON/OFF technology
  • Temperature compensation
  • Refrigerant leak detection

Cons

  • DIY installation is a bit complicated

2. Senville SENL-18CD Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat Pump

Sale
Senville SENL-18CD Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat...
  • 4-in-1 Mini Split Air Conditioner with Heat Pump. Built-In Air Conditioning, Heating (Up to 5F/-15C), Dehumidifier, Fan and Turbo Function.
  • Great for Bedrooms, Additions, Living Rooms, Garages, and Commercial Applications. Can Be Installed in Virtually Any Home, Condo or Space.
  • Whisper Quiet Operation (30dB). Energy Efficient Consumption and Engineered for the Harshest Climates.
  • 5 Year Manufacturer Warranty. Senville Trusted Quality and Design. Free Technical & Installation Support Included.
  • Includes 16 Ft. Installation Kit with Communication Cable and Copper Lines (Pre-Flared) and Remote Control. R410A Pre-Charged (25 Ft. ) Requires Professional Installation.

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

 

A modestly priced Senville AC with an in-built heat pump, the LETO series SENL 18CD mini-split offers affordable heating and cooling round-the-year. With a variable inverter compressor, you’re guaranteed efficient cooling and heating (up to 5F/-15C), making this unit an excellent option for homes in more temperate climates. Installing the heat pump is easy. Even better, you can install the 18CD in virtually any room. 

Top of the 18CD’s list of features is the high-efficiency rating. With a SEER rating of 19 and an HSPF rating of 10.0, it’s one of the most efficient heat pumps in its category. The 18CD is also ultra-quiet, with both the condenser and indoor air handler designed for noiseless operation. Multi-directional air vents, the bucket-free design, and remote control are other notable features.

The 18CD is ETL and AHRI certified. It’s also Energy Star certified and comes pre-charged with R410A refrigerant up to 25 feet. Users enjoy a 5-year warranty on the condenser.

Pros

  • Rated 19 SEER and 10.0 HSPF
  • Ultra-quiet indoor air handlers
  • Multi-directional air vents
  • Remote control

Cons

  • Professional installation required

3. Air-Con Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat Pump System

18000 BTU Mini Split Ductless Air Conditioner –...
  • ENJOY A COMFY HOME no matter the outside temperature. Heat, cool and dehumidify up to 1,000 sf with our ductless mini split when outside temperatures are as low as -4F.
  • SAVE YOUR MONEY. A whisper quiet ductless air conditioner uses very little electricity. No more power guzzling starts and stops. Save up to 60% with this high efficiency power mizer.
  • TOTAL PEACE OF MIND. You'll never, ever worry about an AC problem with our 7/5 year warranty, 30 day money back guarantee, and U.S. based replacement parts and awesome service.
  • LASTS A LONG TIME. AirCon cuts no corners with production quality. None. Your new air conditioner heat pump is built with the highest pro-grade components from top to bottom.
  • WORRY FREE SIZING. The right-sized system for you depends on how you'll use each room, ambient air flow characteristics and where you live. We'll help you make the right choice.

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The 12,000 BTU Air Con mini-split is another worthy option when shopping for a multi-functional heat pump for inexpensive year-round home cooling and heating. The AC has a 13,000 BTU heating capacity and a 12,000 BTU cooling capacity and utilizes a GMCC Toshiba compressor for quiet, efficient operation. 

Meant for areas measuring 500 to 749 square feet, the Air Con boasts many convenience and performance features. A DC inverter, for example, electronically regulates the voltage and current, ensuring smooth operation with no ON/OFF motions. Low ambient heating (up to -4F) and cooling (up to 5F), automatic restart, auto defrost, auto cleaning, a 24-hour timer, Quiet Mode, Sleep Mode, Intelligent pre-heating, and louver position memory are other prominent features. You may also want to know that the Air Con has seven indoor fan speeds.

The heat pump comes with a 7-year warranty on the compressor and a 5-year warranty on other parts. Inside the package, you’ll find the compressor, air handler, a remote control, and a 15-foot installation kit (13.5-foot copper line set and 15-foot communication cable).

Pros

  • 18 SEER efficiency 
  • AHRI and ETL certified
  • Seven indoor fan speeds
  • Pre-charged with R410 refrigerant
  • Industry-leading 7/5 year warranty on condenser/parts

Cons 

  • Professional installation required

4. Classic America Ductless Wall Mount Mini Split With Heat Pump

Classic America Ductless Wall Mount Mini Split...
  • Classic America Mini Split Inverter Ductless Air Conditioner/Heat Pump. Uses 108-120 VAC electrical power, 16 SEER High Efficiency Rating, ETL Approved. Toshiba/GMCC Compressor and charged with R410A refrigerant.
  • Indoor unit has a modern and sleek appearance. The outdoor unit provides a powerful, dependable and efficient performance. Easy Installation kit and a wireless remote controller included.
  • Installation kit includes: 16 Feet Insulated Copper-Aluminum Refrigeration Tubing, Wiring Cables, Cable Tie - Pipe Wrap, Wall Sleeve Pipe.
  • Easy to use. Automatic air swing, Sleep function, Timer function, Auto-Restart, 3 Speed Fan, Anti-Freeze Pipe Sensor , Elegant Design, Washable Filters.
  • Perfect equipment for additions, conversions and ultimate independent zone control.

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Classic America has a reputation for building some of the world’s best home heating and air conditioning systems, and they did a fantastic job on this 16-SEER, 9.0 HSPF heat pump. The heat pump, which uses 108-120 VAC electrical power, boasts a sleek and modern appearance and packs the power to deliver the reliable heating (and cooling) output to keep you and your family comfortable all year round.  

The mini-split heat pump is easy to install, though the manufacturer recommends that you hire a licensed professional installation. It comes with a remote control that allows you to set and adjust indoor heating and cooling without leaving the sofa. 

You also get to choose from five operational modes; Auto, Cool, Dry, Fan-only, and Heat. Alternatively, select the Auto Switch mode for automated operation. When in Auto Switch, the mini-split intelligently detects indoor air conditions and selects the best operational mode. 

Other features of the Classic American heat pump include Sleep Mode for quiet night operation, Auto Restart that automatically turns ON the heat pump in case of a power outage, automatic air swing, and a 24-hour timer. 

Pros

  • Wireless remote control available
  • Easy installation, with a 16-foot line set included
  • Multiple operation models
  • Pre-charged with R410A refrigerant

Cons 

  • DIY can cost you the warranty

5. GREE LIVS12HP230V1B Wall Mount Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat Pump

GREE 12,000 BTU 16 SEER LIVO+ Wall Mount Ductless...
  • These Gree LIVO+ 16-SEER heat pump systems are built around Gree's G10 Inverter and variable compressor technology, using environmentally friendly R410A refrigerant.
  • Required, but not included: 1/4" x 3/8" line set | Items included: Outdoor condenser, Indoor Wall Mount, and Remote. Other accessories sold separately.
  • Each Livo+ mini-split indoor unit is designed to heat and cool a single room, and will blend seamlessly into any decor.
  • It features the Universal Wi-Fi Technology by purchasing the Wi-Fi Kit WSBEC04. With this kit, you will be able to control your unit from your smartphones or tablets anywhere, as long as you have Wi-Fi access.
  • SEER: 16.0000 -- EER: 9.3000 -- Room Size: 400 - 650 ft2

Last update on 2020-10-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Finally, the Gree LIVS12HP230V1B would also be an excellent investment for any homeowner looking for an HVAC system that offers all year comfort. The 16-SEER heat pump is built around Gree’s G10 inverter and variable compressor technology that operates at different capacities to efficiently regulate room temperatures. The technology ensures that the heat pump reaches the desired temperatures faster and maintains consistent comfort levels round the clock. 

The minimalist design is another thing we have to mention. The Gree is designed to blend well with any living space, with the slim, compact indoor air handler built to mix well with most indoor designs. The mini-split employs Gree LIVO+ universal wireless technology to allow for smartphone and tablet control. 

Other features of the Gree heat pump include quality filters, low-voltage startup, self-diagnosis, vertical auto-swing, LED panel, fan delay, and control lock. IFeel function, multiple fan speeds, bluefin condenser, dehumidification option, and intelligent operation are also available. 

The unit has a cooling range of 0 to 115F and a heating range of -4 to 75F. The heat pump works exceptionally in spaces ranging from 400 to 650 square feet and comes pre-charged with the eco-friendly R410A refrigerant. 

Pros 

  • Innovative LIVO+ Wall Mount Technology 
  • Wi-Fi ready 
  • Multiple fan speeds
  • Ultra-efficient G-10 inverter technology 
  • Minimalistic, slim, compact design

Cons

  • Line set required but not included in the kit
  • Wi-Fi kit WSBEC02 is purchased separately 

Cold Climate Heat Pump Buying Guide

Now that we’ve seen some of the best dual-function air conditioner + heat pump mini-splits, it’s time to discuss how to choose one for your home. Here’s everything you need to know;

What is a Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pump?

There are three broad categories of heat pumps; air source, geothermal, and ductless mini-splits. 

  • Air Source Heat Pumps

The most commonly installed heat pumps, air-source heat pumps, have two parts – an indoor unit (known as an air handler) and an outdoor unit (known as a heat pump). Line sets connect the two parts, and, inside the line sets is refrigerant that circulates between the indoor and outdoor units, absorbing and releasing heat as it moves back and forth. 

  • Geothermal Heat Pumps 

Geothermal heat pumps are slightly different. Also known as ground and water source pumps, they move heat through a series of pipes buried in loops outdoor. The tubes can be buried vertically or horizontally. Inside the tubes is a water solution that is warmed by the constant 50-60 degrees F temperatures in the ground. The water solution circulates into and out of your house. As it passes through the house, the heat dissipates into your rooms.

  • Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pumps

Finally, owing to efficiency issues with both air source and geothermal heat pumps, a new line of heat pumps was designed – known as ductless mini-splits ac. Like air-source heat pumps, mini splits have an outdoor component and at least one indoor unit (some have two or more indoor units). The outdoor unit is known as the compressor/condenser, while the indoor component is the air handler. 

How Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pumps Work

a flowery home with the best mini split heat pump for cold weather

Ductless mini-split heat pumps don’t require ductwork. The quiet indoor unit is installed high on a wall or on the ceiling and operated through a remote control device. The condenser, meanwhile, stays outdoors. The components are then connected using tubes. In most cases, these tubes are run through the wall. A hole, often 3 inches wide, is drilled through the wall, and all line sets and electrical wiring connecting the two components passed through that hole. 

An eco-friendly refrigerant (often R410A) circulates through the tubing and plays a starring role in delivering heat to your indoors. 

What happens is that when the wall mounted air conditioner and heat pump is turned ON, it draws warm air from outside the house, and as the air passes through the refrigerant, the heat in that air is extracted and dumped into your rooms through the air handler. The cool air (from which the heat was extracted), meanwhile, is dumped outside the house. 

Are Ductless Mini-Split Air Handlers Good for Home Heating?

Absolutely! Ductless mini-split heat pumps are some of the most efficient heat pumps you can buy. The cooling efficiency of heat pumps (or ACs with in-built heat pumps) is measured by SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio), with the federal minimum standards set at 13 or 14-SEER for new units depending on location. 

The heating efficiency of these appliances, meanwhile, is measured by HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor), with the federal minimum set at 7.7. As you can see from the above reviews, most mini splits exceed these standards.

What we want to stress, though, is that you pay greater attention to the HSPF value if you’re primarily concerned with heating. According to the American Council for Energy-Efficient Economy, the target should be 8.5 HSPF or more. If you’re buying a dual-function AC +heat pump mini split, however, try to balance the SEER and HSPF values. A 15+ SEER and 8.5+ HSPF rated unit would be excellent. 

Another thing we have to mention is that new heat pumps work well in most parts of the country, but are at their best in areas that don’t experience extreme temperature fluctuations and situations where only moderate heating is required. In extreme temperatures, such as below 10F, you’ll need an auxiliary heat source. 

Considerations When Selecting a Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pump

Aside from efficiency, two other vital factors when choosing a mini-split heat pump are the size of the unit and convenience features. 

  • Size

How much space are you looking to heat? This should be the first question you ask. If you buy a heat pump that’s either too small or too big for your home/space, you will either not heat the area sufficiently or have an overly large unit that has to go ON and OFF repeatedly during operation to avoid overheating the space. This repeated ON/OFF activity shortens the life of heaters. 

HVAC professionals refer to the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) Manual J to determine the right size heater or AC for a given space after taking into consideration; the home’s foundation, wall thickness, insulation values, air filtration, openings, and other factors.

  • Convenience Features

Convenience features are any extras included in the appliance to make your work easier and give you more comfort. Three such features that you’d want to focus on are; noise output, demand-defrost control, and reverse cycle chillers. 

For noise, we recommend heat pumps rated at 76 decibels or lower. When it comes to frost control, frost accumulation is a massive problem in the outdoor compressor unit. Frosting can impede energy efficiency and compromise indoor comfort. 

Models with demand-defrost control allow you to defrost the condenser anytime to minimize inefficiency issues. Finally, reverse cycling chillers make it possible to pair the heat pump with a wide range of heating and cooling distribution systems for even greater comfort in the home.  

How to Get more from your Mini-Split Heat Pump

Most mini-split heat pumps are incredibly efficient. But, you can always boost efficiency by helping the heater in several ways, including;

  • Prepare for supplemental heating

Although a medium-sized mini-split can comfortably warm an average-sized room, this is only practical in moderately cold seasons. Whenever the temperatures dip too low, the heat pump alone may not generate enough heat to keep you warm round the clock. In these situations, you may need a supplementary heat source such as an electric resistance heater.

  • Mount the indoor close to the ground

Most homeowners don’t take this seriously, but the way you install the indoor air handler has a big say on the ease and efficiency of heat distribution in your room. The unit should be installed at least 15 inches off the floor, with sufficient clearance in front of it. This way, the air handler gets to pull cool out of the room more easily. 

Also, at close to floor level, warm air isn’t blown directly on occupants. Instead, the air is blown across the floor and mixes with cold air, generating the perfect indoor air conditions. It’s also easier to access the filters for cleaning when the indoor air handler is closer to the floor.

  • Right size the pipes too

Most mini-split air pumps come with line sets to connect the indoor and outdoor units. The most important thing here is that the two components (condenser and air handler) should be far apart enough to ensure that no noise transfers from the outdoor unit to the indoor unit. At the very least, the components should be 15 feet apart.

Other measures

Other than preparing for supplemental heating, mounting the indoor unit close to the ground, and right-sizing the pipes, we also advise that you;

  • Add insulation to your attic and walls
  • Add weather stripping around doors and caulk around windows
  • Install and set programmable thermostats to automatically adjust heat output as appropriate

Wrap Up

As you can see, ductless mini-split heat pumps would be a great source of supplemental heating in the home. Indeed, you can even use a mini-split heat pump as the primary heat source during the not-so-cold months. As with other mini-splits, though, make sure to find the right size unit for your home.