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Not sure I can make it to June 14. 

Is mini split the best way to go?

How loud is compressor and what would be a minimum distance from windows?

Electro Venta for sale and installation?

Buy elsewhere and hire installer?

Recommendations for installer?

Only six questions. Not bad. Narrowed down from original 15.

Thank you to anyone who has one and can give this a/c newbie some sound advice.

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If you are going to buy a mini-split, I suggest ElectroVenta for the complete job.  Your next search will be for a photovoltaic system to reduce your CFE bill.  :wacko:  AC is expensive to operate. If you have cross ventilation in the room, a ceiling fan should do the trick in April-May. We never found AC even tempting in our 13 years at Lake Chapala.

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I agree with RV Gringo about Electroventa for sales and installation.  Bear in mind that you might need to do some cosmetic work on the walls after they leave, since they have to cut into them to install the pipes.

Yes, I believe the mini split is the way to go.  The window A/C's are noisy and less energy efficient.

Ours is installed in the bedroom which has no no natural cross ventilation, with the compressor on the roof.  The part in the bedroom delivering the coolth is very quiet. The compressor is noisy enough that you don't want it anywhere near the window, especially if that's a sleeping room.

It's a matter of individual heat tolerance. I like a cool room for sleeping and soon found that a fan doesn't do the job. YMMV.

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I recently picked up an LG mini-split on liquidation at WalMart, and had it installed for about $2500 additional. With the construction starting at 8am across the street, we can now turn the air on and not be bothered by the noise. Be aware that I estimate that cooling our little bedroom down to about 22C seems to consume another 3kW-H every night. You might want to look at your CFE bill and determine if there is a risk of going into the DAC zone ($$$).

Pete

 

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I brought a large swamp cooler (evaporative cooler) down from the States as an experiment.  As I write it is 92 degrees on the Mirador and 74 degrees here in the house.  The interior humidity is only 54%.  It uses water dripped over an evaporation pad and a motor for the large fan.  It should be a lot less expensive than an air conditioner.  I haven't seen my CFE bill yet.

If you undersize the unit, you will just get a hot damp room, so be sure you get one big enough to change the air in the spaces you want to cool every minute or two.

I have heard rumors that the new coolers for the Auditorio are this kind.

Good luck.

Rick

 

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I can't help much with local purchase and install info. We bought a house 12 years ago on the mountain that has continuous cross breezes. Never even close to needing A/C/

However we bought a house in Guayabitos a couple of years ago where A/C is mandatory for survival half of the year. As one might expect, the more the unit costs the better the long term benefits. It always works out that way. I installed LG Inverter V 1 ton mini splits in each of the 3 bedrooms. This was the high end 220V LG unit that was much more efficient as well as quieter than cheaper models. I also installed a 2 ton and 1 ton to cool the living area.

We mounted the outside compressor in a variety of places. A couple on the roof and others on a metal platform hanging on the side of the house. The installers have to run a line between the outside and inside units so the longer the distance and more walls involved the price goes up. The biggest problem we faced was the drain, especially in our living area mounted on an inside wall. We had to chisel a channel for the drain sloped to the side of the house.

The mini split will require a separate breaker or 2 if 220V. Does the house breaker box have enough windows as they are called in Mexico? Cable must be run to power the unit.

Last June we had visitors at the beach. Two adults and 6 kids. We closed up the house at 4:30 and cranked up the 3 tons to cool the living area for cooking and eating. The units were quiet enough to be able to watch TV with no problems.  At bedtime we killed those units and turned on those in the bedroom. Normally about 75-78 degrees plus ceiling fans were plenty. We were only there 2 weeks but the total 2 month bill was $1,500 pesos. With a single bedroom unit the costs would certainly be much less.

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I live about as high as you can get above the main road through Ajijic. And most every time it's a little too hot, the humidity is quite low. So yes I could run an air conditioner like one does in the hot humid north. But here. I never ran my air conditioner. because it uses so much electricity. Rather I run an evaporative cooler mounted on the roof that cools much of the house and on a low speed with most of the cool air pointed to the bedroom I use only 450 watts per hour which is a small fraction of the amount of electricity needed for a refrigeration air conditioner.

However should the humidity be high the evaporative cooler would do almost no good. It only works well when you live in a hot and DRY climate which is the case at my house in upper Ajijic

What is an evaporative cooler? It's a fan that forces air through wet porous panels and as the water evaporates the temperature can drop more than 20  to 25 F if the outside air is relatively dry but maybe only 3 or 4 degrees if the air were humid like we have in most places up north

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We used Jose Alfredo Cabrera in Chapala.  We bought 2 one ton mini splits for the bedrooms about 4 years ago.  He ran the wire to our fuse box and did the installation.  I would recommend him.  He speaks broken English but you can get by with him if you don't speak any Spanish.  The a/c compressor units are mounted on our roof.  His email is  jacj007@me.com

cell 331 292 3394 / 333 952 3878 (I don't know if the second number is another cell or his house.

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Replies in caps to differentiate not to shout

 

Is mini split the best way to go? YES AS THEY ARE CHEAP, QUIET AND GET A UNIT WITH HEAT AS THERE ARE A FEW WEEKS WHERE YOU WILL SLEEP WELL WHEN COLD SPELLS HIT

How loud is compressor and what would be a minimum distance from windows?  IT IS ON ROOF AND YOU DONT HEAR IT

Electro Venta for sale and installation? I DUNNO

Buy elsewhere and hire installer? NO

Recommendations for installer? I DUNNO

I HAVE 2 UNITS IN MY PLACE, 1ST ONE 3 YEARS AGO RAN 6,000 PESOS INCLUDING INSTALLATION, 2ND ONE 5,700 BOTH HAVE HEAT AND A/C, HAVE ONE IN MY GUAD OFFICE DONT KNOW HOW I SURVIVED BEFORE, UPSTAIRS POOR VENTILATION AND LOTS OF COMPUTERS AND LASER PRINTERS DONT HELP

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We are contracting through Gustavo Marquez for a split unit.  He also installs evap coolers.  The installation is turnkey including wiring to the main switch, all the way to painting your wall after installation.  Gustavo will also be installing our swimming pool.  He speaks perfect English and walks you through your choices and what to expect.  His office # is 766 6034, cell: 333 157 3048.  Email at mg0708@prodigy.net.mx

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My handyman installed the units, ran the pipes and the electricity. ElectroVenta then did the final hookup and test. There is also Refrigeracion Real, on the carretera north side at the Chapala end of Riberas that was willing to do it.

I initially asked Electroventa for a price on a complete package, as per recommendations here, but when I saw the units on sale at Walmart for $3000, I knew it would be hard to find a better deal, so I went that way.

I installed the outside unit on the roof, within the  enclosure that already hides my tinaco and satellite dish, so the noise is not likely to bother anyone.

Pete

 

 

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I just completed a comparison between Electroventa and Tio Sams on Tuesday.

The cost for a 1.5 T (20 square feet room)  cooling only Whirlpool  was  $6926 at Tio Sams  and $7300 at Electroventa. Both places would have to order the unit.  Electroventa also carries Mirage but it is mnf. in China and for me that is a no go.

Installation was also cheaper at Tio Sams.   The man is scheduled from Guadalajara.  

 

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They have small portable air conditioners that vent out rubber hoses and can be moved from room to room like our little LP cat heaters.  Might do the job cooling off the bedroom before sleeping if that is whats needed.  We find that a fan is enough but much is personal about what you need or don't need.

 

 

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We have researched these a lot. One source for information on reliability, approx. costs, capacities, efficiency is by searching Amazon.com. Friends in SMA in building a new home included 5 mini-splits and large main unit. They are very happy with their decision  but used mostly. People we know in Ajijic went solar with mini-splits, brought in 220V from street and cost was about $8,000 US maybe a little more. 

 

In San Miguel we have lower humidity and temperatures but cooler winter so our need is more for heat. There are new propane wall furnaces by Rinnai etc that are excellent for just heat. They too can be found on Amazon for researching.

The issue with mini-splits is you need power at each unit and normally 220V at main unit and a refrigerant line run to each unit. Most homes do not have 220V so an additional cost. They also require considerable electricity which means solar electric helps. But now the cost is several thousand dollars required if one includes solar. 

saludos

Sonia

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Mini split is installed. I took a recommendation from a friend on Face Book for Alberto Farias who had training in the States as well as working experience in all phases of making sure mini split is installed according to the code of his former U.S. city. I could not be more pleased with the quality of the work and the quality of the man, himself.

Calls himself the Home Doctor and is experienced in plumbing, electrical, painting, pools, a/c, heaters, and all major appliance repairs. Strong recommendation.

Lives in Joco and works all of lakeside.

Alberto Farias 331 706 9407

.                       387 763 1200

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What unit, and how much did you pay?

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I wanted a 12,000 BTU which is the largest size for 110-115. I don't have 220 and the expense to add it was prohibitive. ElectroVenta had a Mirage for under 6,000, but both my installer and myself felt the LG at Home Depot for 6799 was a little better quality with an almost silent condenser, which was important to me because it was being placed very near a neighbor's window. With materials, installation was 2300 for a total of 9099. Not the best deal in the world, but not the worst. Most importantly, now that everything is installed and working, I am happy with the decision. I do appreciate your comments and those of most of the other posters and did take those into consideration, even though the results may make it appear as if I did not.

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Thank you for sharing your results and recommendations. Glad you found a good solution to your needs. Your homework obviously paid off!

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  • 1 year later...

You can go for hOme 5000 BTU Window Mounted Air Conditioner - Compact 7-speed Window AC Unit Small Quiet Mechanical Controls 2 Cool and Fan Settings with Installation Kit Leaf Guards Washable Filter - Indoor Room AC, price is very cheap $128 in Amazon. Last air I bought this one (5000 BTU ) for bedroom, after reviewing from https://coolingmyrv.com/, this site. All are the features of this AC are good. Cooling time 10 minutes or less. Reusable washable ECO filter, and two-way air flow.  If you want you can try this one.

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We bought a Whirlpool 18,000 btu from Tio Sam's last spring. It was $12,717. They arranged for an Electrician from Chapala to run a 220v line from our electrical "box" up to the mirador and installed a breaker box. Next a Whirlpool guy from Guadalajara came and installed the inside part, drilled a hole in the wall and connected the "plumbing" to the outside unit and connected the wiring. That was $4600 and $2300 respectively. 

The unit we have is the top of the line and will cool as well as heat. It is very quiet. 

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On 4/12/2016 at 6:25 PM, John Shrall said:

However we bought a house in Guayabitos a couple of years ago where A/C is mandatory for survival half of the year.

No, it's not mandatory- it is what you personally find necessary. If it was mandatory for survival, all the Mexicans and the other gringos who find living with fans to be adequate would be dead by now.

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