How to Move a Mini Split: A Comprehensive Guide

Moving a mini split can be a complex task, but with the right knowledge and tools, it can be done successfully. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the entire process, from uninstalling the unit to reinstalling it in its new location, with a focus on providing detailed, technical, and expert-level information to ensure a smooth and efficient move.

Uninstalling the Mini Split

Backup the Freon

Before uninstalling the mini split, it’s crucial to properly back up the refrigerant (Freon) into the unit. This process involves the following steps:

  1. Turn off the power to the unit and close all the valves completely.
  2. Remove the service valve caps and use a 3/16 Allen wrench to connect your refrigerant recovery gauges to the larger of the two copper lines, which is the low-pressure side.
  3. Once the refrigerant line is closed, the gauge should start moving down, indicating that the refrigerant is being stored into the outdoor unit.
  4. Ensure that the entire refrigerant charge is recovered and stored in the outdoor unit before proceeding with the uninstallation.

Disconnect the Electrical Wiring

After backing up the Freon, you’ll need to disconnect the electrical wiring from the unit. This step requires careful attention to ensure proper reconnection later. Make a detailed diagram or take photographs of the wiring connections to reference during the reinstallation process.

  1. Locate the electrical panel or junction box where the mini split’s wiring is connected.
  2. Carefully label each wire with its corresponding terminal or connection point.
  3. Disconnect the wires one by one, taking care not to mix them up.
  4. If the unit has a dedicated circuit breaker, turn it off and disconnect the power supply wires.

Remove the Mounting Hardware

The final step in uninstalling the mini split is to remove the mounting hardware that secures the unit in place. This may include screws, brackets, or other fasteners.

  1. Identify and locate all the mounting hardware components.
  2. Use the appropriate tools, such as screwdrivers or wrenches, to carefully remove each piece of hardware.
  3. Make note of the orientation and placement of the hardware for easier reinstallation.
  4. Gently lift the unit off the wall or mounting surface, taking care not to damage any components.

Moving the Mini Split

how to move a mini splitImage source: Flickr

Prepare the New Location

Before moving the mini split to its new location, you’ll need to prepare the site to accommodate the outdoor compressor unit.

  1. Create or purchase a concrete slab or platform to support the outdoor unit.
  2. Ensure the slab is level and sturdy enough to withstand the weight of the compressor.
  3. Choose a location that is away from direct sunlight, heat sources, plants, and leaves, as these can affect the unit’s efficiency and performance.
  4. Measure the dimensions of the outdoor unit and the available space to ensure a proper fit.

Transport the Unit

Carefully transport the mini split to its new location, taking precautions to avoid any damage to the unit.

  1. Use a dolly or hand truck to move the indoor and outdoor units separately, if possible.
  2. Secure the units during transport to prevent them from shifting or falling.
  3. Avoid exposing the units to excessive vibrations or impacts.
  4. If the units need to be tilted or laid down during transport, make a note of the orientation and position them correctly at the new location.

Reinstalling the Mini Split

Reconnect the Electrical Wiring

Once the mini split is in its new location, you’ll need to reconnect the electrical wiring to the unit.

  1. Refer to the detailed diagram or photographs you made during the uninstallation process.
  2. Connect each wire to its corresponding terminal or connection point, ensuring a secure and proper connection.
  3. If the unit has a dedicated circuit breaker, reconnect the power supply wires and turn the breaker on.
  4. Verify that all electrical connections are tight and secure.

Install the Mounting Hardware

With the electrical wiring reconnected, you can now install the mounting hardware to secure the mini split in its new location.

  1. Refer to the notes or photographs you took during the uninstallation process to properly orient and position the mounting hardware.
  2. Use the appropriate tools to install the hardware, ensuring a level and secure installation.
  3. Tighten all screws, brackets, or fasteners to the recommended torque specifications.
  4. Visually inspect the installation to ensure the unit is level and firmly in place.

Restore the Refrigerant

The final step in the reinstallation process is to restore the refrigerant (Freon) to the mini split system.

  1. Open the valves on the refrigerant lines.
  2. Connect your refrigerant gauges to the service valves on the unit.
  3. Slowly release the refrigerant back into the system, monitoring the pressure and charge levels.
  4. If the linesets are shorter than the original installation, you may need to adjust the refrigerant charge accordingly.
  5. Refer to the manufacturer’s specifications for the proper refrigerant charge and any necessary adjustments.

Test the Unit

Once the mini split is fully reinstalled, it’s essential to test the unit to ensure it’s working correctly.

  1. Turn on the power to the unit and check for any error codes or warning lights.
  2. Verify that the compressor, indoor fan, and outdoor fan are all operating as expected.
  3. Check for any refrigerant leaks by inspecting the connections and monitoring the system pressure.
  4. Perform a full cooling or heating cycle to ensure the unit is functioning properly.
  5. If you encounter any issues or the unit is not performing as expected, refer to the manufacturer’s troubleshooting guide or consult a professional HVAC technician.

By following this comprehensive guide, you’ll be able to successfully move your mini split to its new location while maintaining the integrity of the system and ensuring its continued efficient operation. Remember to always prioritize safety, follow manufacturer instructions, and consider seeking professional assistance if you’re unsure about any step in the process.