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Is there a company that makes a mini-split air conditioner in the 9,000 to 12,000 BTU range that has a HEPA filter, ideally with a carbon filter as well?
Since posting I've been asking around. It appears that there are no residential split units with HEPA filters, in part because a HEPA filter, being dense, requires a more powerful blower motor than the ones used for split units.
I came across a 20" x 16" x 10.5" HEPA filter w/fan by Fantech that can be installed in the ceiling and ducted (insulated) to suck air from another room thereby circulating filtered air, say from the room having a split level system, but it's about $350 plus installation.
I also found out that most companies won't sell a system to a DIY homeowner unless they have a professional install it. On top of the 110v (or even 220v) dedicated circuit to the area of the outside compressor (read electrician fees), the cost for a single room ductless split unit here in Hawaii would be about $3000 including the ducted HEPA system.
Given the above I've decided to keep my window AC. I bought a portable HEPA filter. The combination of both running at the same time several hours each day will still cost less for electricity than it would if I got a split AC system and the ducted HEPA filter.
Kerry, good for you. Sounds like you asked the right questions and even better sounds like you were given correct answers. I like it when a plan comes together. :D
Even though you would have liked the HEPA filter in conjunction with a mini-split, I was glad to see you had already discovered what I already knew, in that, the mini-split does not have high-efficiency filtration available to be used in an integral fashion.
Sounds like your arrangement is probably the best you can get under the circumstances.
All the best, Irishmist
Thanks for the ack.
The system appears to be working. Lots of changes in the use of the different components throughout the day. HEPA on, hallway fan on/off, AC on/off, room doors closed or open, hanging louvers to hallway open or closed, etc., very customizable. I'm concerned about the electric bill. :)
As an experiment I cut some of the Honeywell Purifier's replacement flexible carbon filter (Part #38002 - Home Depot) to fit my 2006 Scion xB's AC filter and it works. Every few weeks I sprinkle 3-4 drops of cinnamon bark oil on the car's carpet, as a freshener. Now, with the AC on recirculate, I can barely smell the oil. So I cut another swatch and added it to my room AC. We've yet to have a no trade winds period again, as bad as the the one last month that prompted me to find a solution, so I don't know how effective it's going to be.