What is the purpose of an air handler unit?


An air handler unit (AHU) is a key component of a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system. Its primary purpose is to circulate and condition air within a building. The air handler is responsible for moving air through the HVAC system, filtering it, and adjusting its temperature and humidity before distributing it to different spaces within the building. Here are the main functions and purposes of an air handler unit:

Air Circulation: The AHU is equipped with a fan that draws in air from the surrounding environment. This air is then circulated through the HVAC system.

Air Filtration: One of the crucial functions of an AHU is to filter the air to remove particulate matter, dust, pollen, and other contaminants. This helps improve indoor air quality and protects the HVAC system components from debris.

Temperature Regulation: The air handler contains a heating and/or cooling element (such as a coil or heat exchanger) that adjusts the temperature of the air passing through it. This allows the HVAC system to maintain a comfortable temperature in different areas of the building.

Humidity Control: In addition to temperature regulation, some air handler units have components like humidifiers or dehumidifiers to control the humidity levels in the air. Maintaining appropriate humidity levels is essential for comfort and can also prevent issues such as mold growth.

Mixing Air: In larger HVAC systems, the air handler may be responsible for mixing and blending air from various sources, such as return air and outside air. This is important for achieving proper ventilation and meeting building code requirements.

Distribution of Conditioned Air: Once the air has been conditioned, the air handler unit distributes it through a network of ducts to different zones or rooms within the building.

Integration with Control Systems: Modern air handler units are often equipped with sophisticated control systems that allow for precise adjustment of airflow, temperature, and humidity. This enables energy-efficient operation and customization based on the building's needs.

Overall, the air handler unit plays a crucial role in maintaining indoor air quality, controlling temperature and humidity, and ensuring that conditioned air is distributed effectively throughout a building.

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