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What does an HVAC Air Handler Do?

Many people need to be made aware of air handlers, despite them being present in numerous homes as cooling and heating devices. It is not as recognized as AC (air conditioner) systems or furnaces, but it is common to have questions about it.

Split system HVAC Supplies AC (heating, ventilation, & air conditioning) units both outdoor and indoor components. In homes with air conditioners and furnaces, the furnace is located inside while the air conditioner is situated outside. However, when a heat pump system is installed, then the air handler is placed inside the home, and the heat pump is located outside. 

According to Tropical Supply, The air handler contains essential system components such as:

  • Electrical components
  • Electronics
  • Air filter
  • Blower Motors
  • Evaporator coil

What is the structure of an Air Handler?

While an air handler and a furnace may share a similar appearance and location within the home, it is essential not to confuse them.

An air handler is typically found in a basement, attic, utility closet, or garage and appears as a large metal cabinet. Despite their similarities, it is crucial to distinguish between the two as they serve different functions in a home’s heating and cooling system.

Air handlers come in various configurations to meet a home’s specific needs. For example, multi-position air handlers are taller than traditional units and can be installed in various positions. Wall-mounted HVAC are shorter and broader and can be mounted on a wall. Mini-split air handlers, which can be installed on ceilings or walls, are designed to work with ductless mini-split systems.

What is the working of an HVAC Air Handler?

The function of the air handler (HVAC) is to transfer heat/energy to either cool or warm the air and then disseminate the conditioned air throughout the dwelling. 

To cool the house, air enters the air handler through the return duct and is directed over the evaporator coil inside the unit. The coil absorbs energy/heat and reduces humidity through the refrigerant. The refrigerant is then cycled outside to the heat pump, where the heat is released into the environment.

To warm your home, the air-source heat pump uses its refrigerant to absorb heat/energy from the air outside. This refrigerant then travels to the evaporator coil, where the heat is transferred to the air flowing over it. The blower then circulates this warm air throughout your home.

The most effective way to optimize energy efficiency is by having the indoor HVAC air handler and air-source heat pump compatible. It is generally recommended to replace both of these units simultaneously to guarantee proper compatibility. If the units are incompatible, the system’s efficiency will suffer, leading to higher energy costs. Additionally, some manufacturers may require matching components for the warranty to remain credible.

Air handlers, like air conditioners and furnaces, must be regularly maintained. As a rule, they are usually serviced twice annually in conjunction with a heat pump.

For More Information, Call Tropical Supply 

Are you thinking of buying an air handler online? Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any lingering queries about air handlers. 

When it is time to swap out your heat pump and air handler, get in touch with us to request a quote for a new coordinated system.