If you’re hunting for heating and cooling services, you may come across confusing, sometimes contradictory information about various kinds of HVAC systems. One component that causes quite a bit of confusion is the air handler. Is this the same as an air conditioner? We’re here to help sort this out.
An air handler is the indoor component of some kinds of HVAC systems. It attaches to a network of air ducts that circulate conditioned air all through the building. Air handlers differ in size, type and capacity, dependent on the application.
Some individuals use the words “air handler” and “blower” interchangeably, but this is not right. An air handler is an entire unit containing a blower and several other components, all of which operate together to condition and circulate the air.
Generally, an air conditioner [shares|uses|utilizes} the furnace’s blower motor, so no air handler is necessary. However, in climates where home heating is not needed in a home or commercial property, an air conditioner may be the only HVAC equipment present. In this instance, the indoor air handler operates along with the outdoor unit, called the condenser.
In this setup, the AC unit’s air handler [blows|forces|pushes} indoor air [across|over|along the outside of} the evaporator coil, which absorbs heat and collects moisture, leaving the air handler to circulate cooled, dehumidified air back to the building via ductwork. Refrigerant lines attach the air handler to the outdoor condenser, enabling the heat transfer to the outside. This will permit the air conditioning to maintain a constant, comfortable indoor temperature and humidity level.
This is where air handlers are most frequently found. In cold climates where heat pumps are less dependable, they are sometimes installed alongside furnaces, creating what’s called a dual-fuel system. However, advancements in cold-climate heat pumps make dual-fuel systems less typical as of late. Because there is no furnace to lend its blower motor, heat pumps require a dedicated air handler to disperse conditioned air.
Heat pumps work by removing heat from the outside air and transferring it inside via the indoor coil. The air handler blows air across the coil to acquire heat before circulating it through the building. A heat pump can additionally be used for cooling, where it pulls heat from the indoor air and transfers it outside, just like an air conditioner.
No. Furnaces come with a blower motor to move conditioned air. The blower is usually located within the furnace. It pushes air across the heat exchanger, a metal component that exchanges heat from a fuel source to the air blowing over it. The fuel source can be natural gas, propane or oil, which is ignited to produce heat. Once warmed, the air spreads back through the ductwork system and into the building.
The basic components of an air handler include:
If you’re suffering from issues with your air conditioner, air handler or other HVAC components, Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning is here to help out. Our staff of knowledgeable specialists can diagnose and repair any problems with your climate control system, so that it runs safely and efficiently. We believe in our exceptional work so much that we back each and every repair with a one-year 100% satisfaction guarantee! For more information or to schedule air conditioning repair in North America, please phone a Service Experts office near you today.
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