When researching air conditioning systems for your home or new commercial renovation project, you may have come across VRF systems. VRF stands for Variable Refrigerant Flow and is a HVAC system created by leading aircon manufacturer, Daikin.
As the name suggests, VRF systems use a refrigerant as the heating and cooling medium. Only the minimum amount of refrigerant is needed to cool, which makes the system known for its energy efficiency.
Considering a VRF air conditioning system? They’re great for both commercial and residential applications. Here is everything you need to know.
How does VRF air conditioning work?
VRF air conditioners consist of one large outdoor unit and groups of smaller indoor air conditioning units that can be individually controlled. When in use, the outdoor unit flows refrigerant through to each smaller unit which allows heating and cooling to take place.
This also means you can heat and cool different spaces at the same time.
Unlike ducted systems, the VRF system does not require roof coils which makes it an ideal choice for older buildings with no existing system. VRF systems are like split systems in which they both comprise of internal units that are connected to one large external unit. The main difference is, spit systems work by pulling hot air through a compressor to then eventually convert gas into liquid.
Whilst VRF systems rely on a heat pump and inverter to continuously control the amount of refrigerant flowing through.
VRF Air Conditioning Applications
VRF systems are commonly used in large spaces where different areas may require different heating and cooling at a given time. These include commercial buildings such as offices, banks, schools, and hotels.
These systems are also often commonly used in buildings with multiple levels. This is because it allows the user to set up their own climate control independently of each level.
For example, if you have a multi-storey floor property and you notice one of your floors isn’t utilized as often, you can create an independent zone that allows you to save energy consumption and aircon running costs.
Due to its on-demand ability to heat and cool, flexibility, and energy savings, VRF systems are also becoming very popular in houses. The great thing about these systems is that you can pretty much install them in any building, new or old.
It’s no secret one of VRF aircon’s key selling points is its energy efficiency and subsequent cost savings.
Businesses and homeowners alike can take advantage of lower heating, cooling costs and energy savings with VRF. This is because the system uses a single compressor to power multiple rooms and it ensures only the minimal amount of refrigerant is used to run.
Advantages of VRF systems
- You can create different temperature zones within your property.
- They are highly energy-efficient and can save you money in the long term.
- Offers increased levels of occupant comfort and air quality for those with allergies or sensitivities to chemicals and gases, as the air is recirculated.
- Quiet to run and easy to maintain.
- They are reliable and have fewer breakdowns as they are not running constantly, only when required.
- Units are compact which allows business and homeowners to maximise their space.
Disadvantages of VRF systems
- Larger systems can be complicated to install, therefore associated installation costs are generally higher.
- Although rare, if you experience refrigerant leakage it can be dangerous.
- VRF is unsuitable for use in extremely humid areas as moisture is recirculated which could lead to mould growth.
- These systems are not ideal if you want air conditioning in rooms that adjoin other rooms.
Like a regular split or ducted system, VRF systems require regular maintenance. Due to the risk of refrigerant leakage, it’s important that you go to a licensed professional for any maintenance and repair work.
At a routine service, you can generally expect the technician to conduct a thorough check of the system to make sure everything is running correctly. Your technician will inspect the refrigerant levels and pressure, as this can be impacted by things like leakages or misconnections, and conduct an airflow test in each room to ensure that they’re all working properly together.
Need a new air conditioning system for your South West business?
At Busselton Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, our expert team has been servicing the entire South West WA region with all residential and commercial air conditioning needs. Whether you are looking for advice or have a particular product in mind, we’re here to help!
Get in contact with our friendly team today.