Rooftop Vs. Ground Installation: Which Is The Best Location For Your HVAC Equipment?
Split heating and cooling systems come with an outdoor component that should be installed outdoors. You can install the outdoor unit on the ground or the roof. However, the chosen location can affect the performance of the system. Therefore, consider the following factors when selecting the best installation location for your split heating and cooling unit.
Available Installation Space
Your preferred installation location should have enough space to ensure proper airflow to the outdoor unit. For ground installations, the area should have adequate ventilation on all sides. There should be no shrubbery in the area, as it can cause blockage in the unit. Choose a location that offers protection against inclement weather such as rain and snow.
If you don't have a suitable installation location on the ground, go for a roof installation. Roofs have enough space for both small and large heating and cooling units. They also have no obstructions, which ensures adequate airflow to the unit. However, make sure that the roofing material used can handle the weight of the equipment.
Climate of the Area
The climate in your area can impact your choice of installation location. Weather conditions such as severe heat and snow can affect the performance of the unit. When installed on the roof, the outdoor unit may be exposed to extreme heat during summer. The heat can cause the unit to overheat and affect its cooling capabilities. Therefore, if your area experiences scorching summers, a ground installation away from direct sunlight would be ideal.
Outdoor HVAC units can handle a little snow and ice. These systems have a defrost feature that helps melt the ice and snow. However, if snow accumulates on the condenser coils, it can cause them to freeze over. Freezing can damage the unit's components and lead to failure. Therefore, install the system away from snow and ice.
Heating and cooling systems require proper maintenance to function correctly. You need to clean the coils, outdoor fan, and the entire outdoor unit. Consider how the chosen location will affect the accessibility of the equipment. If a roof installation makes it difficult for you to access the equipment, install it on the ground. Ground installations also simplify repairs and protect your roof from heavy foot traffic.
Install your outdoor unit in a safe location away from theft and vandalism. If your neighborhood is prone to break-ins, a roof installation would be the safest choice. Alternatively, invest in a security cage for your unit. These cages are made of sturdy materials, and they also have locks to limit access to the equipment.
Choose the best installation location for your split system based on the above factors. For installation services, contact an HVAC contractor.