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I am looking for information on efficiency of portables and on split-systems where the compressors are installed indoors. I work in Management for an organization within the Federal Government that uses portable A/C units as the go-to solution for residential apartments rather than installing split-units; in many cases where split-units are used, the compressor is installed somewhere indoors.

My understanding is that portable units are considerably LESS efficient than a split system where the compressor is installed outdoors. Likewise, installing an A/C compressor indoors is very inefficient. I believe the reason for the inefficiency in these cases is because the heat exchange is not efficient when it is done indoors.

Assuming this is correct, quantitative confirmation would be most helpful - statistics, numbers, comparisons, building codes, etc. However, qualitative information would also help (the well-informed opinions of HVAC professionals).

I appreciate all responses, whether you can provide hard facts/evidence, or just to weigh-in on the question.

Best,
Charles
 

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Split air conditioning systems have many advantages that make them worth considering when you’re shopping for air conditioning.

Advantages of Split Air Conditioners

• Ductless

• Small size

• Flexibility: great for zoning or the heating and cooling of individual rooms

• Each zone can have its own thermostat

• Capable of saving you energy and thus saving you money

• Avoid energy loss associated with ductwork, which can account for up to 30% of energy consumption
 
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