Not many things other than wine and cheese get better with age. HVAC systems are no exception.

But you can make sure that your ductless mini splits don’t go bad, with proper cleanliness and maintenance.

New systems don’t have any dust or pollutants clogging their filters, and their pieces aren’t worn out. To keep your older ductless mini split functioning like new, it’s important to keep it clean and maintain it.

There are some things you as a homeowner can do to keep it clean, but don’t forget that it’s important to have a professional HVAC specialist perform maintenance work on your mini split twice a year.

To diagnose any issues and to keep your ductless system working like new in between visits from your professional, we’ll give you some ways you can help:

What To Look For In Your Mini Splits:

Breathe Easy

If you or a family member has allergies or asthma, you may have chosen a ductless mini split because ductless systems promise better air quality.

Learn more about the unexpected benefits of mini splits

Mini splits don’t trap pollutants and dust as easily as ducts do. But if you notice the air quality in your house with a mini split has been decreasing, if may be time for some maintenance.

Mini splits don’t have ducts that trap pollutants, but they do have filters. These filters catch dust, dirt, and allergens in the air instead of blowing it back out.

Luckily, these filters are easy for homeowners to maintain by themselves. All you really need to do is remove the filter every few months (or more if you have shedding pets!) and vacuum it with the soft brush attachment.

It’s Getting Hot In Here …Too Hot

If you’ve noticed that your ductless mini split is making your house too cold, too warm, or is struggling to maintain a constant climate, there are a few things that could be going wrong:

  • A dirty filter could cause some problems with your system properly cooling or heating the area. If your mini split’s filter is clogged with dirt and grime, then the system will struggle to pull in air and it will have to work very hard to get the room to the temperature you want.
  • If your mini split isn’t heating or cooling correctly, another issue could be the outdoor unit—especially in these New England winters! Make sure the outdoor part of your mini split is clear of debris, vegetation, or snow so that it can function correctly.
  • If the outdoor system can’t get the proper airflow that it needs, it will have to work harder to cool or heat your house –  resulting in a higher energy bill or funky temperatures. So when the New England winter hits, make sure to remember to shovel around your outdoor component to keep it in tiptop shape.
  • If your mini split is heating when it should be cooling and cooling when it should be heating, you will probably have to call a professional. This could be a problem with the reversing valve, and when this valve breaks your ductless system gets stuck in one mode or the other.
  • And if your mini split seems to grow weaker over time, you could have a refrigerant leak. If this happens, it is very important to call a professional ASAP, because the longer this goes on, the more damage that could happen to your mini split. If this problem goes unchecked, it may even cause a total system breakdown.

Strange Noises

Usually, your mini split should be relatively quiet. But if you start to hear strange noises, like clanking, whirring, or groaning (you may have a ghost!) you should call a professional to see if there is a problem with your system. It could be nothing, but it’s better to have it checked out and be safe rather than sorry.

Funky Smells

When your system is a few years old, you may start to smell some…unpleasant odors. This is a sign that you should call a pro to clean the coils on your outdoor and indoor units.

Especially when your mini split is in AC mode, moisture collects in these coils and can start to harbor mold or mildew.

Make sure to have your HVAC professional check these coils to avoid this problem.

Mini Split Cold Weather Cures

In New England, snow is an unavoidable reality. But snow and ductless mini splits don’t mix well. It’s important to make sure you protect the outdoor component of your mini split from the snowy tundra. However, it’s important not to restrict the airflow of your unit, so construct a small roof or shelter over your mini split. And make sure to regularly clear off any snow or ice that has gathered on your outdoor unit!

Mini Split Summer Successes

To keep your mini split running at tiptop shape in the warm months as well, make sure there isn’t any overgrown plants or vegetation that can block your outdoor unit. There should be a clearance of four to five feet around the unit so that it doesn’t overheat or run inefficiently.

Avoid These Issues with Regular Professional Check-Ups!

If you have any of these issues, it’s important to either try and fix them yourself or call a professional immediately. Problems like these are progressive, which means if they go untreated they will only get worse.

In order to keep your ductless mini split working at the top of its game, schedule a professional check-up twice a year and do what you can in the meantime by cleaning filters and clearing your outdoor unit’s surrounding area. By maintaining your mini split like this, you can actually save money by extending its life and prolonging its high-quality, like-new functions.