Ductless Systems Expand Market Potential

February 13, 2001
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EMI featured its MC/MH multizone unit, which, according to the company, can house 2-, 3-, or 4-zone systems, with total capacities to 5 tons.


Mitsubishi Electric, Hvac Advanced Product Division, said its PUG/PUGH high -efficiency vertical discharge condensing units have more of an 'American style' design.
ATLANTA, GA — Sanyo Air Conditioning Products (Chatsworth, CA) and Mitsubishi Electric, Hvac Advanced Products Division (Norcross, GA) were two of the few ductless cooling manufacturers to introduce new products at the International Air Conditioning, Heating, Refriger-ating Expo, held here recently.

Sanyo unveiled its Eco Multi Series, a new individual air conditioning system that combines a power control compressor and an electronic refrigerant control valve. The new product will be available in May, said Tom Crock, Sanyo’s hvac national sales manager.

“We believe it will do real well,” said Crock. “Instead of the inverter-driven compressor used for conventional multizone air conditioning systems, Eco-Multi employs a revolutionary Power Control compressor to control the total capacity for optimum operation.”

According to Crock, it is possible to connect multiple outdoor units with a capacity of up to 150% of the outdoor unit rated capacity. Assuming that the minimum capacity of an indoor unit is 12,000 Btuh, it is possible to connect eight units to one outdoor unit, said Crock.

“Sanyo’s Eco Multi system is truly revolutionary,” he said. “While it works for large buildings and stores, it’s still wonderfully economical, serving the needs of the new millennium.”

Crock said the combination of a power control circuit with newly designed structural parts contribute to a major reduction in running costs. At the same time, it uses a proprietary power control compressor without an inverter control, “thereby reducing harmonic current emissions and benefits the ecology while complying with EMC standards.”

Features of the Eco Multi Series include a refrigerant control with a 16-bit microprocessor automatic restart function for power failure and a self-diagnosing function. It offers three fan speeds with automatic fan operation, an air sweep (direction) control, an on/off timer, a “hot start” heating system, a built-in drain pump, and an auto-flap cooling or heating comfort control.



Serviceable Ductless

At the Mitsubishi Electric booth, the company touted its new vertical air discharge condensing units, which can provide energy ratings up to 12 SEER, according to Mike Smith, marketing manager for the Hvac Advanced Products Division. Smith said its PUG/PUGH condensers, when combined with the company’s Mr. Slim P-Series indoor units, “makes for one of the most energy-efficient and cost-effective ductless systems on the market.”

According to Smith, top features of the PUG/PUGH include:

  • 12-SEER heat pumps and straight-cool models;
  • Copeland Compliant™ Scroll® compressor inside;
  • Solid-state control board with built-in diagnostics;
  • Easy access to control panel and compressor compartment;
  • Dual-guard coil protection; and
  • 25°F low ambient operation without wind baffle.
  • “This adds value to the contractor by giving him a system that he is more comfortable with installing and servicing,” said Smith of the “American-style” condensing unit design. “We want more contractors to consider ductless, and this new series with higher efficiencies and a style he’s used to helps draw him into the ductless fold. This new PUG system helps the contractor land more sensitive projects like schools and churches.”

    In other announcements, Smith said the company would soon begin an aggressive marketing campaign targeting business-savvy contractors interested in growing their business in the profitable and growing ductless arena.

    “The campaign will refer to the price reductions that Mitsubishi Electric has made across its product line and specifically calls out the new high-efficiency series,” said Smith.

    Also down the line, he said, are a national incentive program from Mitsubishi Electric and a national training program.

    “Not only is doing business with us a more profitable arrangement, it now pays in dividends in the form of merchandise awards for all units bought and installed,” said Smith. “Participating dealers will be added on our company’s web page [www.mrslim.com] to receive leads from consumers that respond to our advertising. Closure rates on these leads is around 80%.”



    Exhibitor Roundup

    At other booths:

  • Samsung (Whittier, CA) featured its Digital Variable Multi-System (DVM). According to Stu Taylor, manager of Technical Support, the DVM system can operate up to 10 indoor units by one outdoor unit.

    At the booth, Taylor showed independent performance test results of its DVM vs. a competitor’s system, which he referred to only as “Company D.” At various settings, Taylor said the DVM produced a better EER.

    “DVM shows better energy efficiency than inverter during a whole range of operation,” said Taylor. “By adopting its digital scroll compressor, Samsung can provide its DVM systems at a competitive cost to general inverter multi systems.”

  • Friedrich Air Conditioning Co. (San Antonio, TX) did not feature new products, but said it plans to introduce its high-efficiency 50-Hz cooling models internationally this year.

  • Meanwhile, Tadiran (Tel-Aviv, Israel) said its Aqua Series is to be available in the United States by fall of this year. It is currently involved in a certification process. A Tadiran spokesperson said its water fancoil units will be available in wall-mounted, ceiling, and floor designs.

  • Haier (New York, NY) talked about its single wall-mounted, split-type unit; its convertible-type unit; and its cassette-type unit. It said all of its convertible-type units can be mounted to ceiling or floor standing without modifications, “so it is easy for you to install or adjust,” said a company spokesperson.

  • Fujitsu General America, Inc. (Fairfield, NJ) had a large number of its ductless air conditioning and heat pump systems on display.

    “Our basic product line, which contains cooling and heating models from 3¼4-ton to 2-ton, has been expanded to include larger and more specialized systems up to 3 tons,” said a company spokesperson. “Additional models include a universal air conditioning system, which can be mounted on the wall, floor, or ceiling; a ceiling-suspended unit; and a space-saving ‘dual-zone’ system.”

    According to the company, the dual-zone system allows for two separate rooms to be cooled simultaneously yet independently through one connection to a single, outdoor condensing unit.

  • Enviromaster International Corp. (EMI, Utica, NY), a division of ECR International, displayed both its AmericaSeries and EnviroAir ductless split systems. According to Sam Vivirito, national sales manager, the AmericaSeries, offers a “full range of air handler styles and options, including supplemental electric heat, choices in voltages and controls, and on selected models, fresh air knockouts and internal condensate pumps.”

    Featured at its booth was the MC/MH multizone system. All told, the AmericaSeries multizone systems offer over 75 combinations of capacities in two-, three- or four-zone straight cool or limited range heat pump systems.

    “Within a MC/MH multizone system, each circuit operates independently; there is no mixing of refrigerant and each circuit is independently controlled,” said Vivirito. “It is possible to mix AmericaSeries air handler styles as well as capacities within a single MC/MH multizone system.”

    Regarding its EnviroAir single-zone high wall ductless systems, they are available in three capacities as either straight cool or heat pump.

    In addition to the ductless split system offering, EMI displayed its VPAC, a vertical stack, new construction through-the-wall unit, and the RetroAire replacement ptac chassis line.

  • United Coolair Corp. (York, PA) featured its MiniCool ductless split a/c systems, 1 to 9 tons. According to a company spokesperson, its MiniCool evaporators can be split, reaching 250-ft in any direction. The condensing units used with the MiniCool evaporators feature a centrifugal blower “making it ideal for indoor installation.”

    “Unlike typical ductless a/c systems that require an outside condensing section, waste heat is conveniently ducted to any outside wall,” said the spokesperson.

    Publication date: 02/19/2001

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