Air Handler Closet Installation: Everything You Need to Know

air handler closet installation

If you’re planning to install an air handler in your home, you might be wondering where to put it. Many homeowners place air handlers in a closet, which can be a great way to keep the unit out of sight and out of mind. But before you start stuffing your air handler into any old closet, there are a few things you need to know.

Firstly, you need to ensure that your air handler is installed according to the HVAC closet code in your area. This means that the closet must meet certain size requirements, and it must be ventilated properly to ensure that there’s enough airflow for the unit to function safely.

If you’re retrofitting a closet for your air handler, the installation process can be a bit more complicated. You’ll need to consider things like the cost of the retrofit and the amount of space you have available. You’ll also need to ensure that the closet is correctly sealed to prevent air leakage.

And what about storage? Can you keep things in your HVAC closet? While it might be tempting to use your air handler closet as extra storage space, it’s important to remember that the unit needs to be easily accessible for maintenance and repair. So, it’s best to keep the closet free of clutter.

So, should you enclose your air handler in a closet? The short answer is yes. It’s important to enclose your air handler to protect it from damage and to prevent dust and debris from entering the system. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the closet is appropriately sized and ventilated to avoid any potential safety issues.

Wondering whether to install your air handler in the attic or a closet? While there’s no definitive answer, installing the air handler in a closet is often the better choice. It’s easier to access, and there’s less chance of damage due to exposure to extreme temperatures.

And what about size? What size closet do you need for an air handler? This can vary depending on the size of the unit. It’s best to consult a professional to ensure that you choose the appropriate size and ventilation for your air handler closet.

Overall, installing an air handler in a closet can be a great way to keep your HVAC system running efficiently while keeping it out of sight. Just make sure you follow the correct installation procedures and consult with a professional to ensure that your system is installed safely and correctly.

Air Handler Closet Installation

Installing an air handler closet may seem like an overwhelming project, but with the right guidance, it can be a simple and stress-free process. Here are some key steps to follow to ensure a successful air handler closet installation:

Step 1: Choose the Right Location

The first step in installing an air handler closet is choosing the right location. You want to select a location that is easily accessible, has enough space for the air handler, and is well-ventilated. An ideal location is a central area of the home, such as the attic or basement.

Step 2: Determine the Correct Size

Before purchasing an air handler, it’s crucial to determine the correct size for your home’s needs. An undersized air handler won’t adequately cool or heat your home, while an oversized air handler will waste energy and lead to increased utility bills.

Step 3: Prepare the Area

Preparation is key when it comes to an air handler closet installation. Ensure the area is clean, level, and free of debris. Lay down a protective tarp or plastic sheeting to prevent damage to the flooring during the installation process.

Step 4: Install the Air Handler

Once the area is prepped, it’s time to install the air handler. Begin by attaching the air handler to the brackets and secure them in place. Connect the air handler to the ductwork and ensure all connections are tight and secure.

Step 5: Electrical Connections

Finally, connect the electrical wiring to the air handler and ensure everything is grounded correctly. Turn on the power and test the system to verify everything is running smoothly.

In conclusion, whether you’re installing a new air handler closet or replacing an old one, preparation and attention to detail are essential for a successful installation. By following these simple steps, you can enjoy a properly cooled and heated home for years to come.

HVAC Closet Code

When installing an air handler in a closet, it’s crucial to comply with the HVAC closet code. The code specifies the minimum allowable size of the closet, clearance space around the equipment, and ventilation requirements.

Minimum Closet Size

The closet must be large enough to accommodate the air handler, and there should be enough space around the equipment to perform maintenance and repair. The minimum closet size for an air handler is typically 30 inches wide, 30 inches deep, and 30 inches high. However, the exact dimensions may vary depending on the size and type of the equipment.

Clearance Space

The code requires clearance space around the air handler for proper air circulation, maintenance, and servicing. At a minimum, there should be 6 inches of clearance at the front of the equipment, 12 inches of clearance at the sides, 18 inches of clearance at the top, and 4 inches of clearance at the bottom. These clearances apply for equipment up to 15kW. However, the clearance requirement may vary depending on the manufacturer’s specifications.


air handler closet installation

The closet must have adequate ventilation to prevent overheating and to allow the air handler to release exhaust air. The code requires that the closet has two openings: one near the ceiling and one near the floor. Both openings should be close to the air handler and measure at least 100 square inches each.

It is important to ensure that the ventilation openings do not compromise the integrity of the closet and don’t cause noise or vibration issues. Also, bear in mind that size and type of the equipment might require bigger openings.

Complying with the HVAC closet code during air handler installation ensures the equipment operates correctly and safely. Non-compliance may lead to poor performance, safety issues, or equipment malfunction. So, make sure to always check and follow the requirements and the manufacturer’s specifications for optimal performance.

Air Handler Closet Retrofit

Are you thinking of upgrading your air handler closet? A retrofit can improve your HVAC system’s efficiency and save you money in the long run. Here’s what you need to know:

What is a Retrofit

A retrofit is the process of adding or replacing components in an existing air handler closet to improve performance and increase energy efficiency. This can include upgrading insulation, replacing outdated equipment, adding more efficient filters, and ensuring proper ventilation.

Benefits of Retrofits

A retrofit can improve your HVAC system’s performance and reduce energy consumption. This can translate to lower utility bills and greater comfort in your home. Additionally, retrofitting can prolong the life of your HVAC system and reduce the need for costly repairs.

Energy Efficiency

Retrofitting can significantly improve the energy efficiency of your HVAC system. By upgrading insulation, replacing outdated equipment with more efficient models, and improving ventilation, you can reduce the amount of energy your system needs to function.


While retrofitting may require an initial investment, it can pay off in the long run. By reducing energy consumption and prolonging the life of your HVAC system, a retrofit can save you money on utility bills and costly repairs.

Professional Assistance

If you’re considering a retrofit, it’s important to work with a qualified HVAC professional. They can assess your current system and recommend upgrades that will improve efficiency and performance. Plus, they can ensure that all work is done safely and according to local codes and regulations.

A retrofit is a wise investment in your home’s comfort and energy efficiency. With the right upgrades, you can enjoy lower utility bills and increased comfort while reducing your carbon footprint. Get in touch with a qualified HVAC professional today to learn more about retrofitting your air handler closet.

Air Handler Installation Cost

When it comes to installing an air handler, one of the most important factors to consider is cost. The total installation cost of an air handler unit depends on various factors such as the size of your air handler, whether you need a new duct system, and the type of unit you choose.

Factors That Affect Air Handler Installation Cost

Before installing an air handler, you need to consider various factors that can affect the cost, such as:

Size of the Air Handler

The size of your air handler has a significant impact on the installation cost. A larger unit will require more materials, and the installation process will take more time, resulting in higher installation costs.


If your current ductwork needs to be replaced or modified, the installation costs will be higher. The cost of the ductwork installation will depend on the size, materials, and complexity of the duct system.

Type of Air Handler Unit

The type of air handler unit you choose will also affect the cost. For example, a ductless mini-split system is typically more expensive than a traditional split system. However, a ductless system may save you money in the long run by being more energy-efficient.

Average Cost of Air Handler Installation

The average cost of air handler installation ranges between $2,000 and $4,000. However, this cost can vary significantly depending on the factors mentioned above.

Additional Costs to Consider

air handler closet installation

In addition to the installation cost, you may incur other costs such as:

  • Permit fees: depending on your location, you may need a permit to install an air handler, which can add to your installation costs
  • Maintenance: regular maintenance can help to prolong the lifespan of your air handlers, but it comes at an additional cost
  • Energy bills: installing an air handler may cause an increase in your monthly energy bills, which you should consider when determining your budget.

Installing an air handler can be a significant investment. Still, by considering the factors mentioned above and choosing the right type of unit, you can ensure that you make a sound investment that will keep your home comfortable for years to come.

Can You Store Things in HVAC Closet

As much as it may seem like a great idea to use your air handler closet for storage, it’s essential to understand that this space is primarily designed for one thing, housing your HVAC system. Placing any object or box inside the closet can make it difficult for technicians to access the HVAC system and perform regular maintenance or repairs.

Another significant issue with placing items in the air handler closet is that it can pose a severe safety hazard. The HVAC system is powered by electricity and contains moving parts that can cause injury if tampered with. Placing objects, especially flammable substances, in the closet can increase the risk of fire.

If you have to store something, such as cleaning supplies, tools, or other household items, consider using a separate storage space, such as a utility room, garage, or shed. Make sure you keep these areas tidy and organized.

In conclusion, using the air handler closet for storage is not recommended. It’s essential to keep this area clear and free from any objects that can potentially cause harm to your HVAC system or pose a safety hazard. By doing so, you can ensure that your heating and cooling system run efficiently and that your home is comfortable year-round.

Does an Air Handler Need to be Enclosed

Air handler closets are a popular means of keeping your central air conditioning system out of sight. However, there is much debate surrounding whether an air handler needs an enclosed space to function properly.

Function of an Air Handler

An air handler is a crucial part of a central air conditioning system. It is responsible for circulating air through the ductwork, conditioning the air for your home. The air handler typically includes a blower, evaporator coil, and air filter.

Enclosed Spaces Vs. Open Air Handler

An enclosed space can be helpful in protecting the air handler from dust, debris, and other pollutants. However, some argue that enclosing the air handler may be a detriment to the system’s function.

When an air handler is enclosed, it can limit the airflow and create a warmer environment around the unit. This can cause the system to work harder, leading to higher energy bills and potential strain on the equipment.

If your air handler is located in an open space in your home, make sure to keep the area clean and free from obstructions. This will ensure proper airflow and optimal system function.

While an enclosed air handler closet can be a practical solution for concealing your air conditioning system, it’s not a necessary one for optimal performance. As long as the air handler has adequate space and proper airflow, it should operate effectively.

In summary, there are pros and cons to enclosing your air handler. However, ultimately it is not a requirement for efficient operation. Regular maintenance and proper upkeep of your air conditioning system are more important factors in ensuring its longevity and effectiveness.

Should Air Handlers Be in Attic or Closet

When it comes to installing an air handler, one question that’s bound to come up is whether you should put it in an attic or a closet. The truth is, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on several factors, including the layout of your home and your personal preferences.

Attic Installation

Many homeowners prefer to install their air handler in the attic. This has several advantages. First, it frees up space in your closets and living areas. It also minimizes noise pollution since the unit is located away from your living area.

However, attic installations have some disadvantages. For one, it can be challenging to access the unit for maintenance or repair. Additionally, attics can be sweltering in the summer, which can make the air handler work harder and put added stress on the system.

Closet Installation

air handler closet installation

Installing an air handler in a closet is a popular choice, and for good reason. Closet installation is easier to access than an attic installation, making maintenance and repair a breeze. It’s also located in your living area, so it won’t have to work as hard to cool or warm the air.

However, closet installations do come with some limitations. Depending on the size of your closet, you may need to keep your air handler installed outside in another location. Additionally, you may need to limit the size of the unit to fit it comfortably into the closet.

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of air handler installation. Attic installations offer more space in the living areas and minimize noise pollution, but they can be tricky to access and work harder in sweltering heat. Meanwhile, closet installations offer ease of access and less stressful cooling or heating, but they have space limitations. Consider your priorities and your home’s layout when deciding which installation works best for you.

Can an Air Handler be Installed in a Closet

Air handler closet installation is one of the most common HVAC system arrangements in modern homes and buildings. However, one question that people often ask about this arrangement is whether an air handler can be installed in a closet. The answer is yes, but there are some things you need to consider before proceeding.


Before installing an air handler in a closet, you need to determine the right location. The closet should be large enough to accommodate the unit without any space constraints. Also, ensure that the closet’s door is large enough to allow unrestricted airflow.

Space Considerations

Aside from ensuring the closet is large enough, you must consider the unit’s space requirements. Air handlers require some clearance space around them for optimal performance, and this includes the top, bottom, and sides. You may want to consult with a professional HVAC contractor to help you ensure that the space is suitable for installing the air handler.


The closet must have adequate ventilation to provide a constant and unrestricted flow of air around the system. Air handlers need proper ventilation to work efficiently and reduce energy consumption. You may need to consider installing an exhaust fan or vent to ensure continuous airflow.


Air handlers can produce significant noise, and installing them in a closet can amplify the sound. So, you must consider the noise level and reduce it to the minimum by installing insulation and adding sound-absorbing materials into the closet.

In summary, you can install an air handler in a closet, but you need to consider certain factors such as location, space considerations, ventilation, and noise. By following these guidelines, you can ensure optimal performance and efficiency, leading to a cozy and comfortable home. Consult with a professional HVAC contractor for guidance, and you’re on your way to enjoying clean and fresh air in your home.

What Size Closet Do I Need for an Air Handler

If you’re planning to install an air handler closet, one of the most crucial things to consider is the size of the closet. The size of the closet you need depends on the size of your air handler.

Measure Your Air Handler

The first step to determining the right size for your air handler closet is to measure the size of your air handler. Typically, air handlers come in standard sizes ranging from 1.5 tons to 5 tons. Measure the length, width, and height of your air handler and use these measurements to determine the minimum size of the closet you need.

Allow Adequate Space

While the minimum size of the closet should be based on the size of your air handler, it’s important to leave extra space to make it easier to install, repair, or replace your air handler. In general, you should leave at least 6 inches of clearance around the air handler and at least 2 inches of clearance above the air handler.

Consider Other Factors

In addition to the size of your air handler, there are other factors to consider when determining the size of your air handler closet. For instance, if your air handler is located in a humid area, you may want to add extra ventilation or space to prevent moisture buildup. Similarly, if your air handler needs regular maintenance, you may want to leave extra space to ensure easy access.

When it comes to air handler closet installation, size matters. Make sure to measure your air handler and leave enough space for ventilation and maintenance to ensure that your air handler works efficiently. With the right size closet, you can enjoy the benefits of comfortable indoor temperature and clean air inside your home.

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