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Minisplit Line Set Covers

Jeff Cooper | Posted in Mechanicals on

I’m looking for an economical way to cover two minisplit line sets, one around 17′, the other around 14′.  My line sets need at least a 4″-wide cover.  Here are the options I’ve considered:

1.  A commercial product, which starts at around $80 per cover kit, but may not be quite long enough for my longer line set.  $160 to cover two is pricey by my standards.

2.  A so-called 5″ vinyl K-type gutter, which would cost around $65 for both line sets with the elbows, unions, and caps.   I’m not sure it would be large enough, though, as the piece I have is only around 3″ wide in most of its interior.  There’s a wider type of gutter available around an hour away, but it’s not worth the trip.

3.  Someone posted on another forum that he wrapped his line sets in foam pipe insulation and then covered it with RV wheel cover material.

4.  People whose line sets are more slender have done well using 2×3″ gutter downspouts.

5.  Some have suggested forming a cover from aluminum coil stock, but I don’t have a brake, and getting a shop to do it would probably cost more than the commercial covers.

6.  I haven’t seen anyone else propose this, but the solid 4″ Flex Drain that runs around $11 for 12 feet would provide ample room, pieces join easily, and it wouldn’t need any elbows.  Caps for the top ends run around $6.  It’s black and probably not meant to withstand years of UV, so it would need to be covered with a paint that sticks to polypropylene, which runs around $7.  It would have to be slit open to go around the line set, but it could be reclosed with zip ties or something similar.

Any comments on these ideas or suggestions for a better economical solution?

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Replies

  1. C L | | #1

    There was a similar discussion here:
    https://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/question/mini-split-lineset-insulation-disintegration

    I've looked at this product, but it does not appear to be available in small enough size for minisplit, and it presumes one of the lines does not need insulation, which is not true for a mini split:
    https://www.supplyhouse.com/Airex-Line-Set-Covers-33960000

    This type of pvc wrap is what is used commercially; I may use it...
    https://expressinsulation.com/products/pvc-insulation-jacket?variant=500354077&currency=USD&utm_medium=product_sync&utm_source=google&utm_content=sag_organic&utm_campaign=sag_organic&gclid=CjwKCAjwoduRBhA4EiwACL5RP98BBK4c0dPSVclS1W_A0ojFRCvQz_dUiK8G_bk8C041Gw8l1qlDpxoC3IIQAvD_BwE

    In general, I don't think this issue is focused on enough and there is not a good selection of readily available replacement products...

  2. Jeff Cooper | | #2

    Thank you, CL. That previous discussion doesn't really touch on any of the options I mentioned here, nor does anything else I could find on GBA. The PVC jackets in your last link are interesting, but the shipping for what I would need (minus brackets or end caps) is $40, making the product almost as expensive as the commercial covers made specifically for line sets.

    1. C L | | #4

      That was just the first link I found. If you have an HVAC supply place near you could get from them. Grainger also carries this stuff, as does Zoro.
      https://www.grainger.com/product/JOHNS-MANVILLE-2-in-Max-O-D-White-PVC-Insulated-6TEH8?opr=IDPPLARECS&analytics=PLAPDP_undefined
      Then you have to get the foam separately.

      1. Jeff Cooper | | #6

        Thank you, CL. Zoro's shipping is free over $75, but their price per piece is much higher. Grainger maxes out at 2". This product seems to be priced at a premium, but it makes me wonder whether I can find some flat, pliable PVC that I can roll into tubes myself. I'll post here if I find any.

          1. Jeff Cooper | | #11

            Thank you, CL. The Grainger pricing, which I should have sought more thoroughly, is similar to Zoro's. That pipe insulation you found is interesting, but expensive, and whether or not it would survive exposed to the outdoor elements is unclear.

  3. Deleted | | #3

    Deleted

  4. Expert Member
    Akos | | #5

    I've done all three.

    Downspouts are a bit of a pain as they are small and you have to fish the lines. At best, well done looks ok-ish, otherwise it does look like a hack.

    Sheetmetal is nice but does add cost. It doesn't take much to put a screw through a line, luckily this hasn't happened to me, but I've seen it happen. It is easy and not too expensive for longer straight runs, bends are not the easiest unless you do two 45s.

    Off the shelf covers are the simplest. If you have any bends, make sure to get one that has a radiused elbow, less chance of kinking the lineset.

    1. Jeff Cooper | | #7

      Thank you, Akos, especially re the long elbows.

  5. Jon Harrod | | #8

    I've struggled with the high cost of minisplit accessories. I hope that as the market grows we'll see more affordable options for lineset covers and stands.

    That being said, I tend to agree with Akos, the specialty lineset covers are the way to go. Although they're not cheap, they're quick to install, easily accessible for future service and repairs, and give a tidy, finished look.

    1. Jeff Cooper | | #9

      Thank you, Jon. The specialty covers do look as if they'd be tidy, especially as they need no straps to hold them, but the corners on the ones I've looked at are very tight, too tight according to a few reviews. The two 5" sets I'm looking at on Amazon, the MOOITEK and the LyPrem, come with a piece of flexible PVC "hose" that would do nicely in place of a corner. A long piece of the same hose to cover the whole thing would work well for me, even though it would have to be slit open and would require straps to hold it onto the wall. It would be similar to the Flex Drain I'm considering, but white and therefore not in need of paint.

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