Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) is a modern HVAC technology which uses refrigerant as the only cooling and heating medium. The refrigerant is conditioned by a single outdoor condensing unit then circulated to multiple indoor units within the building. VRF technology features Inverter compressors that allow lower power consumption. A simple explanation of VRF is to think of it as a large-scale ductless HVAC system with high-performance capacity; think of it as the ‟Rolls Royce” of Air Conditioning Systems. This article takes you through the benefits of VRF HVAC systems.
Quiet operation: What makes VRF systems quieter is that while the main unit remains outside, this system features many small air handles inside the unit that are much quieter. One-by-one, several air handles can be controlled and piped back to one system. As the term suggests, variable refrigerant flow refers to the system’s ability to control the amount of refrigerant going into each of these small air handlers.
Energy Efficiency: VRF systems have in some cases been shown to save up to 40% of energy costs. Although the initial cost of a VRF system is normally higher, in the long run, VRF systems are more-energy-efficient compared to traditional systems making them a more cost-effective option. With these systems, run time is minimized by the fact that they only send the exact amount of coolant needed to meet the temperature requirement. Another thing that makes these systems energy efficient is their design which allows them to capture heat from the cooling process then reuse it in other parts of the house that need heating.
Zoning: Simultaneous heating and cooling is another of VRF systems benefit. As aforementioned, these systems can capture heat absorbed during the cooling process and redirect it to other areas that need heat. This is because the air conditioning and the heat run independently and can keep the temperature the same on each side or vary it as desired. What this means is that you can have air conditioning in the living room for a family dinner and heating in the baby’s bedroom all at the same time. How is that!
Flexible and Modular: VRFs modular design allows you to add more inside units when you need more heating and cooling zones. If you want a higher capacity, you can join several outdoor units. Also, since these systems don’t usually require ducts, which means they won’t occupy much of your wall and ceiling space. With minimized ductwork, you will have less wear and tear to deal with thus minimized need for maintenance.
Smart technology: VRF HVAC features built-in controls that allow you to use mobile technology to adjust temperature settings remotely. You can set different temperatures right from your phone which is way convenient when you compare to how traditional systems operate. These built-in controls save you the need to purchase expensive building management software that you would otherwise need for air conditioning systems for commercial spaces.
VRF systems first gained popularity in Europe, Japan, and China but their popularity has quickly spread to the U.S. For more information, contact New Braunfels air conditioning professionals of Classic Air Conditioning.