air handler

In by Mark Goodman

Components that blow air through duct work for heating, cooling and/or ventilation purposes.

air handler (Wikipedia)
An air handling unit; air flow is from the right to left in this case. Some AHU components shown are
1 – Supply duct
2 – Fan compartment
3 – Vibration isolator ('flex joint')
4 – Heating and/or cooling coil
5 – Filter compartment
6 – Mixed (recirculated + outside) air duct
A rooftop packaged unit or RTU


An air handler, or air handling unit (often abbreviated to AHU), is a device used to regulate and circulate air as part of a heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system. An air handler is usually a large metal box containing a blower, heating or cooling elements, filter racks or chambers, sound attenuators, and dampers. Air handlers usually connect to a ductwork ventilation system that distributes the conditioned air through the building and returns it to the AHU. Sometimes AHUs discharge (supply) and admit (return) air directly to and from the space served without ductwork.

Small air handlers, for local use, are called terminal units, and may only include an air filter, coil, and blower; these simple terminal units are called blower coils or fan coil units. A larger air handler that conditions 100% outside air, and no recirculated air, is known as a makeup air unit (MAU). An air handler designed for outdoor use, typically on roofs, is known as a packaged unit (PU) or rooftop unit (RTU).

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