Should an Air Handler in a Closet be Vented or Insulated?


An air handler, also referred to as an AHU, is an enclosure that contains a blower, an evaporator coil for cooling and a heating element when used with a heat pump. The air handler unit can operate from an attic, garage or closet.

Locating the Air Handler Unit

  • When placing the air handler inside an interior closet, check to ensure it offers enough room to allow for for maintenance. Change filters periodically to keep the air handler running clean. Allow enough room for technicians to perform the necessary maintenance on your air handler unit.

Insulation Unnecessary

  • Air handlers inside closets do not require insulation. The air handler draws in air from the home and sends it to the compressor through the return ducts; cool air then travels into the house through the supply ducts.

Creating Proper Airflow

  • Small homes or trailers often have air handlers inside an interior closet and usually use the airflow through the closet door as return air. In this case, the air handler will require venting, which will ensure adequate airflow -- important for maximum function and efficiency. The amount of airflow required by a particular unit will depend in its size and design; check the owner's manual to determine how much free space you will need for your air handler unit.

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