At Snowflake Air, we talk a lot about how ductless heating and cooling provides a lot of comfort with a small footprint. That makes it great for historic homes with no ductwork because you won’t need to build out soffits and vents that change each room’s look and feel. 

This mini split installation in Caldwell, ID really put that claim to the test. And, according to the homeowners, it passed with flying colors. 

For this job, we headed out to Babby Farms. It’s a non-profit group that lets children and adults with disabilities interact with animals. 

The owners live on the land as well, in a sprawling old farmhouse that looks like no other home we’ve ever seen in the Treasure Valley! 

We got called because the owners put a new master bedroom on the home. But, their current HVAC system wouldn’t reach the addition. The last thing they wanted to do was interrupt the natural flow and unique architecture with more ductwork. 

Could they keep their home looking the way they liked it while also being comfortable? 

With ductless heating and cooling, the answer is, “Yes!” 

In this case study, we’ll go over: 

  • How Ductwork Installation Affects Home Design
  • Why Mini Splits Are Great For Unique And Old homes
  • More Benefits Of Ductless Heating And Cooling
  • Mini Split Installation In A Caldwell, ID Farmhouse

And, remember to give us a call or email here at Snowflake if you like what you read (and see)! 

Starting with a free consultation, we’ll answer any questions you have about ductless heating and cooling for your Caldwell, ID home. 

Download The Ductless Brochure
Problem: The owners of a unique, rustic farmhouse in Caldwell, ID added a new master bedroom to their home. The current HVAC system won’t reach this room, and the owners didn’t want to change their home’s look by adding more ductwork. 

Solution: Installed a Mitsubishi mini split for ductless heating and cooling. It takes up very little space inside, does not require a complicated installation, and provides excellent comfort for the master bedroom. 

Read More: How Much Does A Mini Split Cost In And Around Boise Metro?

How Ductwork Installation Affects Home Design

Ductless Heatiing And Cooling In Unique, Rustic Boise, ID FarmhouseDuctwork takes up a lot of room. If your home wasn’t designed with that in mind, it can take up a lot of space in weird places. 

Forced-air marked an important step forward for residential HVAC starting in the 50s. Then, central air conditioning became possible for residential homes in the 70s after commercial use for decades. 

If your home had forced-air heat, you could also hook up a condenser and use the same ductwork. 

But, updating an older home to use this method isn’t always easy. 

You end up with large, boxy soffitting all through the rooms to cover where the ductwork runs. Taking a dozen or so cubic feet of space out of a room can make you feel boxed-in or otherwise uncomfortable. 

With this Caldwell, ID farmhouse, that challenge was even more pronounced. Here, we had a lot of custom woodwork and a rustic aesthetic. There was no way we could slap some drywall around the ducts and have that match the look here. 

Another option could be to leave the ductwork exposed. It would be stylized, but that would add an industrial look to this organic design. 

That’s where ductless comes in. 

Why Mini Splits Are Great For Unique And Old Homes

Mini-splits work great in old homes or places with unique designs because they hardly take up any room inside the house. When we say “mini split,” we’re talking about the components that make up a ductless heating and cooling system. 

How A Mini Split Works

Instead of vents, you have an air handler that mounts to the wall. Instead of ductwork, you have narrow, flexible lines that run through or along a wall. 

In most cases, all you see is a rectangular unit hanging up near the ceiling. It’s like an illusion: How does this one box, that doesn’t look like it’s attached to anything, keep the room at the perfect temperature? 

The “trick” is that the system doesn’t move air around — only heat. 

Outside, there’s a heat pump. In the winter, it takes whatever warmth there is outside, amplifies, it, and sends it inside. In the summer, it gets rid of all that heat in the house.

All it needs to do that is a refrigerant fluid, kind of like what’s in a conventional AC. That fluid, or coolant, runs through narrow lines in a loop between the indoor and outdoor components. And, it carries heat in our out of the house. 

Inside, the air handler draws in the air in the room, warms or cools it, and then circulates it again. 

Mini Splits Take Up Little Room

Since those refrigerant lines are tiny and flexible, we often run them through the wall just like you would with electrical wiring. With a home like this, that makes all the difference. 

All our homeowners see in their master bedroom is that one air handler hanging there! 

They don’t have to worry about ugly ductwork or enclosures running through the house with the lines behind the wall. 

And, the benefits don’t stop there. 

More Benefits Of Ductless Heating And Cooling

Along with preserving the look and feel of their home, our homeowners were also impressed with ductless heating and cooling because it’s whisper-quiet, amazingly effective, and barely impacts their bills! 

We go into great detail in other articles, but here’s a quick overview of these benefits: 


There’s no roar of air rushing through vents from across the house. Instead, the air handler makes less sound than you’d hear in a quiet library. 

Amazingly Effective

A mini split eliminates hot and cold spots even in a large or room or open floor plan. It uses sensors to detect spots that are too warm or cool. Then specialized fans direct the treated air into those areas. 

Barely Impacts Energy Bills

A heat pump transfers heat rather than creates it. This way, it only needs a small amount of electricity to run. The rest happens naturally. 

Read More: Rebates and Financing For Mini Splits In And Around Boise Metro

Mini Split Installation In A Caldwell, ID Farmhouse

Installing a mini split in this Caldwell, ID farmhouse was fast and easy! First, we did a load calculation to determine how strong of a heat pump our homeowners needed. 

We walked them through the process of picking out the right models for their custom system. Then, we mapped out the best spots for the air handler and heat pump. 

Finally, we mounted the heat pump on the inside of an exterior wall. That way, it was easy to run the lines through the wall and right out to the heat pump below. The installation took just one day. Ductless Heating And Cooling In Boise, ID Home Garage/Workshop

If you’d like to learn more about how ductless heating and cooling can make your Treasure Valley home more comfortable without a lot of work or renovation, call or email Snowflake Air for a free consultation in a Caldwell, ID mini split installations.