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Are a Ductless Air Conditioner and a Mini Split the Same Thing?

When it comes to cooling your home, particularly during the hot Ottawa summer months, it’s essential to choose a system that not only provides comfort but also aligns with your home’s requirements and your budget. Two popular options that often come up are ductless air conditioners and mini-split systems. But are they the same thing? Let’s dive into the similarities and differences between these two cooling solutions.

Understanding Ductless Air Conditioners

Ductless air conditioners, as the name suggests, are cooling systems that don’t require a network of ducts to distribute air throughout your home. Instead, they consist of an outdoor compressor unit and one or more indoor air handling units. These components are connected by a small conduit that houses the power cable, refrigerant tubing, and a drain line. Ductless systems are known for their efficiency and are often used in spaces where traditional ducted systems are not feasible.

Mini Split Systems Explained

Mini split systems are a type of ductless air conditioning. However, the term “mini split” is often used to describe systems that provide both heating and cooling. Like ductless air conditioners, mini splits have an outdoor compressor unit and one or more indoor units. They are called “split” systems because they are split into two main components: the outdoor and indoor units. “Mini” refers to the smaller size and flexibility of the indoor units, which can be mounted in various locations.

Are They the Same Thing?

The short answer is that all mini splits are ductless, but not all ductless systems are mini splits. The distinction primarily lies in the functionality. If a system can both cool and heat your home, it’s typically referred to as a mini split. On the other hand, if the system is designed solely for cooling, it is a ductless air conditioner.

Which One Should You Choose?

The choice between a ductless air conditioner and a mini-split system largely depends on your specific needs. If you are looking for a cost-effective solution to cool a specific room or section of your house, a ductless air conditioner might be the way to go. They are particularly useful in additions, sunrooms, or areas where extending ductwork is impractical.

However, if you need a more versatile solution that can provide both heating and cooling, a mini-split system would be a better investment. Mini splits offer the convenience of a two-in-one system and can help save on energy bills, as they allow you to control the temperature in individual rooms.


While the terms “ductless air conditioner” and “mini split” are often used interchangeably, they refer to systems that may have different capabilities. At AirZone HVAC Services, we understand the importance of choosing the right cooling system for your home. We offer a wide range of high-quality ductless and mini-split systems designed to meet your specific needs and ensure your comfort all year round. Contact us today to find the perfect solution for your home!

Mitsubishi ductless M Series system installed in Bayshore on a patio with two indoor heads.


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