The Differences Between Residential and Commercial HVAC

Whether it’s residential or commercial, the function of an HVAC system is to keep your indoor environment comfortable. Other than their visible location differences (residential units are typically placed in the back yard or alongside the house while commercial units are on the roof), you might think both systems are the same.

In reality, there are significant distinctions between the residential and commercial HVAC systems used in Carrabelle, FL. Here are four of those differences.

Size and Complexity

Building activities, occupants, and the temperature variance between segmented spaces are among the factors that require adaptability and make commercial systems more complex compared to residential units. Commercial systems require more power and are typically larger than residential so that they can handle the increased demand.

Residential and Commercial HVAC Equipment

Residential HVAC systems are standalone systems; homeowners buy a complete system that fits their needs. If a system fails, typically you replace the entire system. Commercial systems are modular and customized to the building’s needs. If your needs change, you can add or remove the modules as desired.


Residential systems use one condensate line and pan to handle the moisture generated during the cooling process. Because of their bigger size, commercial systems require multiple lines and pipes to drain condensation effectively and prevent clogs or overflowing.

Exhaust and Ventilation

Home ventilation options include opening windows and doors as a means of ensuring fresh air. That option typically isn’t available in commercial buildings. The exhaust and ventilation functions of commercial HVAC systems are on a larger scale than residential HVAC to ensure a good air exchange rate and make certain that toxins are correctly exhausted.

Although residential HVAC and commercial HVAC systems are distinctly different, they do have one thing in common: Both require regular care to keep them running efficiently. To learn more about the benefits of maintenance, check out Advanced Air Care’s maintenance services or call (850) 688-9265.

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