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How Does Split System HVAC Work in Commercial Buildings?

Do you own a commercial property in Beaverton and are looking to install an economical yet powerful HVAC system for your business? If so, consider an upgrade to a split system. Split systems can be an excellent investment for any company. They provide various cooling options and are highly energy efficient. Our commercial HVAC contractors in Beaverton share all the details you need to know.

How Commercial Air Conditioning Works with a Split System

First things first: what is a split system? In simple terms, a split system refers to any air conditioning unit that has its primary components separated and placed in two different areas. Typically, this means one part of the AC will be set up outside, while the main head unit remains housed indoors. The two pieces connect via copper tubes to allow the flow of refrigerant to travel back and forth. Like all air conditioners, split systems effectively cool your business or commercial space by transferring heat from inside your building to the outside. 

Split systems rely on three components to cool and distribute air through your property:

  • Evaporator Coil: pulls heat from the indoor air and cools it using refrigerant.
  • Compressor: moves the refrigerant back and forth between the evaporator and condenser. 
  • Condenser: transforms refrigerant from a gas to liquid, allowing the refrigerant to flow through the compressor. 

What are the Types of Split Systems for Commercial Properties?

Split systems come in two different types: mini-splits and central systems. While the systems have their similarities, they each have unique features. Before deciding which commercial heating and cooling unit is best for your Beaverton business, it’s essential to examine the contrasts between the two. 

Our commercial HVAC installers outline crucial differences and potential benefits of each below:

Mini-Split Systems


Mini-splits, also known as ductless systems, consist of an outdoor condenser and compressor and an indoor evaporator. Refrigerant tubing, power and a condensate drain connect the outdoor and indoor units. These split heating and cooling units give business owners the freedom to control temperatures in individual rooms or designated spaces. 

Mini-splits typically do not require any ductwork to function, meaning easier installation and less wasted energy. Plus, since the air handlers can be mounted to ceilings or hung on a wall, mini-splits allow for more interior design flexibility. Initial installation costs can be higher than traditional forced air, but they save on cooling costs in the long run. 

Mini-splits require precise measurement and planning before installation. Our NATE-certified HVAC technicians in Beaverton can help you assess the correct sized unit, as well as ensure proper placement. 

Central Air Systems

Central air conditioners are the most common types of HVAC split systems found in homes and offices. Like mini-splits, central systems include a thermostat, outdoor cabinet containing a fan, condenser coil, compressor, and an indoor enclosure that houses an evaporator coil and fan. 

Unlike ductless models, central air systems require ducts to circulate the cool air throughout your commercial space. Ductwork can necessitate more elaborate installation and must be maintained to promote product longevity. However, central air commercial split systems allow for individualized climate control of pre-designated spaces. This means Beaverton business owners can create zones that have their unique temperature control perimeters. This is a money-saving solution for spaces that are used sporadically, as they can be turned off when the area is not in use.  

Another added benefit to central air is its overall energy efficiency. A new unit could save you as much as 20%-40% on cooling costs if your current commercial unit is ten years or older. This is another excellent way to save on utility costs without spending money on installing an entirely new ductless system. 

Professional HVAC Services for Businesses in Beaverton

Are you looking to invest in a new commercial HVAC system? Whether you are looking for central air or mini-split options, our dedicated team of professionals can help you find the best solution for your property and your budget. 

From zoning systems to repairs and upgrades, and even 24-hour emergency service, AAA Heating and Cooling is here for you! We proudly serve Portland and Beaverton commercial businesses. Contact one of our professional heating and cooling installers today for all of your HVAC needs.