An RTU, or packed rooftop unit, is a building’s rooftop-mounted HVAC system. RTUs are a popular choice for commercial buildings with flat roofs because they don’t take up valuable interior space and are out of the way when they’re on the rooftop. In comparison to traditional HVAC systems, they can also be more energy-efficient and cost less to operate.
Because all the heating and cooling components are bundled into one unit, making it simpler to set up, access, and maintain, RTUs are frequently referred to as an HVAC system in a box.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of RTU HVAC Systems
Simple installation – RTUs are simpler to install than traditional commercial HVAC systems. To guarantee that the installation procedure is carried out correctly, such as choosing the suitable vibration isolation rails for the system in a self-contained cabinet, it is still necessary to hire a specialist. This is required to keep it operating silently and to stop tremors.
There is no requirement for a separate heating and cooling system if you have a roof-mounted HVAC unit. This makes it advantageous for AC and heating repair services in addition to making it more convenient. It is possible to service the equipment without interfering with the activities and operations of your company.
Greater direct weather exposure – Because these HVAC systems are mounted on roofs, they are subject to a wider range of weather conditions, including heat, rain, snow, and so on. You’ll need extra security to maintain the system functioning correctly, so you’ll need to contact an HVAC specialist on a frequent basis for maintenance and repair.
Only smaller buildings can use them – If your structure is more than ten storeys high, installing an RTU HVAC system might not be the ideal choice for your building. A more powerful HVAC system will be required since the ductwork in your building can be too complicated for the conditioned air to move.
Why Proper RTU Maintenance Is Important
RTUs that are neglected can develop costly issues that impede your company’s operations. When heating and cooling are required, such as in the summer or winter, an RTU breakdown is very annoying. Numerous issues, such as the following, can be found and avoided with routine RTU maintenance:
- Leaks. Any HVAC system may experience refrigerant leaks, condensate water leaks, or air leaking out of the duct work. These leaks impair the efficiency of your HVAC system when they happen. Please get in touch with an HVAC maintenance crew if you think your RTU has leaks so they can check it out and fix it before it gets worse.
- Dust accumulation. If you’ve ever had to replace an air filter in a conventional HVAC system, you are aware of the amount of dust that may accumulate over the course of several months on the fan and in the filter. Dust accumulation and other debris can have a negative effect on performance and efficiency in RTUs, which is not an exception.
- Water stains. RTUs are more prone to water damage than indoor HVAC units because they are outside and exposed to the weather.
- Blockages or obstructions. On occasion, impediments can cause HVAC vents to become clogged and degrade efficiency.
The following should be included in a standard maintenance inspection:
- Examining the air filter. Your building’s ability to breathe clean air is dependent on your air filters, so it’s critical that you change them frequently. To purify your air, we advise making an investment in the best air filters.
- Cleaning the motor and internal fan. The fan blades on RTUs might rust more quickly than those on a conventional HVAC system because they are outside in the elements. Additionally, you’ll need to clean the fan and the motor of dust and other debris.
- Inspection of the heat exchanger. The air is heated by the heat exchanger, a sophisticated tube network that must be kept in good working order.
- Coil maintenance. Remove any dust accumulation that may be causing your RTU to run more slowly and inefficiently.
- Drain system maintenance. Regular drainage system cleaning is crucial because coolant and water must be able to move freely through the drainage system.
- Electrical parts. Check the wiring and the motor starters (contactors) for wear.
- Swapping out the drive belt. Drive belts for RTUs are prone to deterioration from normal wear and tear, thus we advise replacing them once a year.
RTUs require routine maintenance to keep them operating effectively and safely so that their lifespan can be extended, just like other kinds of HVAC equipment.
Numerous systems, such as the plumbing and electrical, in your building must be inspected and maintained on a regular basis.
It’s in your best advantage to invest in a routine maintenance program to keep everything in top working shape, despite the fact that many people don’t call an HVAC repair expert until something goes wrong. Waiting until there is a problem usually results in expensive repairs and significant inconveniences.