You will probably have to purchase an HVAC unit if you have just moved into a new house or plan to live in a tropical place. The reason is to help you maintain the optimal temperature and airflow conditions inside your home.
However, most people are still confused about whether to buy an air conditioner or an air handler.
Is an air handler an air conditioner? No. An air handler is a separate unit, technically speaking. Air handler is responsible for moving the air throughout your room though it can run with an air conditioner. It holds the indoor coil that can be used in cooling and heating your home.
A Must Read: What Is The Difference Between AC Compressor And Condenser?
This article will allow you to determine the difference between an air conditioner and an air handler unit.
Knowing the answer to this long been question will help you to make the right decision on which unit you need to acquire and install in your home.
What Is An Air Conditioner?
Air conditioners are usually those that are visible outside the house, which is different from air handlers.
The reason is that the latter are typically visible inside the house. Rather than blowing conditioned air in your indoor area, an air conditioner’s primary function is to get rid of the present heat in your space.
It is designed to suck all the warm indoor air and pass it through a refrigerator coil found in the air conditioning unit.
Contrary to popular belief, your indoor spaces are not cooled by giving you cool air. It is by sucking all the warm air and driving it out of your home.
This phenomenon is called the Joule Thomson effect that means warm air flowing over a refrigerant coil that leads to the removal of warmth.
Additionally, there are a couple of other critical things that involves the components of an air conditioner.
But, this is basically what an AC does to the living space that gives you a chill and comfortable stay.
Among the benefits of having air conditioners at home are:
- Lower possibility of asthma attacks
- Better indoor temperature
- Better sleep
- Reduces risk of dehydration
What Exactly Is An Air Handler?
Compared to the AC, an air handler is usually found on the inside of your living area. It is designed as a component of a split type system unit of an air conditioner or a heat up.
Air handlers are designed to work with a couple of parts to keep your home either hot or cold, depending on your desired temperature or preference.
For instance, it has an internal motor that dispenses conditioned air in every part of your indoor area.
Many people are being confused with the air handler and furnace. It is because they have some similarities.
However, an air handler can function with a heating and cooling tool or unit. It can be either a heat pump or a split system type of air conditioner.
For most residential houses, one of the highly used handlers is the terminal systems. It entails a motor blower, air filter, and a refrigerator coil.
This type of indoor coil is designed to maintain a specified temperature level of the air.
The air filter is responsible for making sure that all air particles are sieved and prevent them from reaching the handler’s internal parts.
Most air handlers are built with different speed modifications, which is for efficiency purposes when it comes to controlling the air temperature.
The Difference Between Air Handlers And Air Conditioners
For starters, an air handler is a condensing unit that puts pressure on the refrigerant until it is in liquid form.
It will then transferred back to the living space into the air handler evaporator coil. At this point, the refrigerator will turn into gas where heat or warmth is being absorbed from the air, flowing through the evaporator coils.
As a result, the refrigerator gas is ushed back into the outdoor air conditioner system and pressed into liquid form.
If you own a split-system air conditioner, it will be joining a gas furnace or the air handler.
If you are looking at an air handler, you will most likely find a backup electric heating strip used for providing emergency heating.
On the other hand, the gas furnace will use that natural gas to produce some heat.
Many HVAC experts will give you some recommendations to incorporate your air conditioner with an air handler.
It is especially true during harsh weather conditions like wintertime to help with the balance of the temperature.
In some locations across the country, many homeowners combine their air conditioners with a gas furnace. It is affordable when it comes to heating a home that relies on natural gas than ordinary electricity.
Different Functions Of Each
Air handlers and air conditioners have different functions, making it easy to remember the difference between them. Generally speaking, air handlers are designed to move the air around, which is the only thing they do.
They are not responsible for cooling and heating the air. They move it.
On the other hand, air conditioners exist to cool air by removing the heat from the outdoor air. They work hand in hand with air handlers to take in air and move it over to the evaporator coils.
It will then eventually move to the indoor area or any part of your home.
As a conclusion, it is pretty understandable that people still confuse air handlers over air conditioners.
Besides, both work to improve indoor air quality, which makes everything quite tricky, leading you to end up interchanging the two.
However, these two systems are different. They have their unique function to make sure that you are living in a comfortable and healthy home.
You can enjoy both cool, clean, fresh, and toxic-free home by just one click of a button.
If you wish to mount an air conditioner or an air handler, you can speak to your local HVAC manufacturer.
They will help you with all the inquiries and all the recommendations that they can give.