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Heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) systems are essential to any modern commercial building. Whether you own or manage a warehouse, office building, restaurant, or other commercial building, choosing the best HVAC system for your commercial property entails much more than selecting the most powerful system.

However, with various types of HVAC systems for commercial buildings, finding the one that suits your particular needs can be difficult. This article will look at some specifics about commercial building HVAC systems, including how they work, to help you determine which one is best for your business.

Continue reading below to learn more about finding the best commercial HVAC system for your business and discover why Design Mechanical is the team to trust when looking for certified HVAC services.

The Different Types of Commercial HVAC Systems

Residential and commercial HVAC systems serve the same function: to keep building occupants comfortable by providing high-quality air and adequate humidity at optimum temperatures. Commercial HVAC systems, however, do this on a much larger scale and also differ in terms of the various mechanisms and components involved.

While choosing a residential HVAC system is relatively straightforward, finding the one that suits your particular needs can be difficult due to the variety of commercial HVAC systems being far greater. Let’s take a look at some of the different types of HVAC systems for commercial buildings:

Packaged Systems

Packaged HVAC systems are complete units that include the compressor, condenser, evaporator, fan coil, and a built-in thermostat. Packaged systems can be placed on the ground or on the roof with proper roof support.

They are ideal for buildings that can support their size in one place. It usually costs less to install a packaged system than to install a standard system, since the components are all housed together. Installation is also less labor-intensive, so it doesn’t take as long to get things up and running.

Split Systems

Split systems get their name from the fact that it has two units: an outdoor and an indoor unit. Split systems consist of a condensing unit installed outside the property and a gas furnace or air handling unit, installed inside the property and utilize ductwork to distribute heated and cooled air throughout the building.

They are ideal for smaller commercial buildings, such as small offices, restaurants, or small stores and allow each area to be controlled using a thermostat or direct digital control (DDC) system.

There are two types of split systems from which commercial businesses can choose:

Single-Split Systems

Single-split systems are ideal for smaller commercial buildings because they only have one compressor, an evaporator coil, a furnace, and a refrigerant line. Single-split systems are the least expensive type of HVAC system and are ideal for cafés, shops, small offices, and other similarly sized spaces.

Multi-Split Systems

Multi-split systems operate similarly to single-split systems but are able to connect up to nine indoor units to a single outdoor unit, resulting in increased energy efficiency and a smaller outdoor footprint. Multi-split HVAC systems are ideal for larger commercial properties, such as larger office spaces, restaurants, and retail stores and also include temperature sensors that detect changes and adjust as needed, resulting in far less energy consumption.

While a multi-split system requires a lot of ductwork that must be installed professionally, they are much more energy-efficient and have a much smaller outdoor footprint.

Rooftop Unit (RTU)

A rooftop unit is a packaged HVAC system located on the roof of small commercial buildings and includes a compressor, condenser, evaporator, and blower. These all-in-one HVAC units connect to the building’s ductwork and provide adaptable heating and air conditioning to a specific area of the building.

Due to their location on flat roofs, rooftop units are protected by weather-resistant casings designed to withstand a wide range of environmental factors such as rain, wind, sun, and snow while allowing the unit to draw in outside air to be circulated. To save energy, an RTU will typically use a mixture of outdoor and indoor air to keep CO2 levels safe and avoid overworking the unit during extremely cold or hot days.

Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) Systems

VRF systems are advanced commercial HVAC systems that use heat pumps or heat recovery systems to send refrigerant from a central outdoor unit that houses all compressors and condensers. VRF systems are suitable for a wide range of commercial spaces, such as office buildings, hotels, and mixed-use facilities where heating and cooling of different areas may be required simultaneously.

VRF systems are also ductless and highly effective in moving refrigerants to the zone of a building that needs to be heated or cooled, allowing for greater temperature control.

Variable Air Volume (VAV) Systems

Variable air volume systems use a single-duct supply and return setup with varying airflow to maintain set temperatures. The temperature is kept at the thermostat setting, with varying airflow to provide heating or cooling for optimal temperature management. By varying airflow, VAV systems maintain constant, comfortable temperatures.

VAV systems are ideal for small offices and multi-room spaces because they allow different areas of the building to be heated and cooled separately.

Constant Air Volume (CAV) Systems

CAV systems provide constant airflow and regulate the building’s climate by adjusting the temperature of the air supply until the required temperature in the building is reached. CAV systems work best in large commercial spaces where temperatures must be kept constant for long periods, such as manufacturing and warehouse facilities.

Speak to HVAC Specialist at Design Mechanical Today

Overall, the type of HVAC system you choose for your commercial building will largely be determined by your facility’s unique requirements. Regardless of the kind of system you choose, the best HVAC system for your commercial building should provide years of optimum airflow and improved air quality. Before making a decision, be sure to consult with a reputable HVAC company to select a commercial HVAC system that meets your requirements.

Design Mechanical is proud to provide a comprehensive range of professional HVAC services to businesses in Kansas City and the surrounding areas. With a team of over 100 certified HVAC service specialists on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, you can be confident that your commercial HVAC system is always performing as expected.

If you would like to learn more about Design Mechanical and how our professional HVAC services can help you, contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our certified HVAC specialists.