Ductless Cooling Technology Shines In The Midst of Slow-Moving HVAC Technologies

Sept. 26, 2013
Ductless cooling technology grows twice as fast as other energy efficient HVAC technologies in the US.

Energy-efficient technology continues to see incremental gains, but one technology stands out: Ductless cooling technology is expected to see revenues grow from $3.9 billion in 2013 to more than $9 billion by 2020, according to a study by Navigant Research. That represents nearly 30 percent of total energy efficient HVAC systems revenue in 2020, said the report.

“That’s twice the growth rate of most energy efficient HVAC systems in the US,” said Bob Gohn, senior research director for Navigant.

“For these technologies–mainstream HVAC equipment–there aren’t many watershed technology shifts; it’s a slow-moving march in terms of adoption of new technologies,” he said. The basic technology stays the same, but is tweaked with small changes or smarter controls, he said.

In addition to ductless cooling, heat pumps are seeing growth. Heat pump technology is seeing a 10 percent growth rate, which is higher than average for the US and Canada.

Just as important as technology is how it’s engineered into the building, he said. “If you put in a ductless cooling system and the ventilation is poor, then it won’t be efficient,” he says.

For HVAC, the key words are slow and steady. You won’t see any big leaps in disruptive technologies—but you will see incremental advances in response to increased regulation and demand for high-efficiency products.

Find reports from Navigant here: Navigant Research

About the Author

Lisa Cohn | Contributing Editor

I focus on the West Coast and Midwest. Email me at [email protected]

I’ve been writing about energy for more than 20 years, and my stories have appeared in EnergyBiz, SNL Financial, Mother Earth News, Natural Home Magazine, Horizon Air Magazine, Oregon Business, Open Spaces, the Portland Tribune, The Oregonian, Renewable Energy World, Windpower Monthly and other publications. I’m also a former stringer for the Platts/McGraw-Hill energy publications. I began my career covering energy and environment for The Cape Cod Times, where Elisa Wood also was a reporter. I’ve received numerous writing awards from national, regional and local organizations, including Pacific Northwest Writers Association, Willamette Writers, Associated Oregon Industries, and the Voice of Youth Advocates. I first became interested in energy as a student at Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, where I helped design and build a solar house.

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