PTAC Units

A Complete Guide To PTAC Units

With the rising outdoor temperature, the home interiors become uncomfortable and suffocating without a reliable cooling system. To beat the scorching summer heat, one must install an air conditioning unit.

In that context, installing a packaged terminal air conditioner or PTAC unit is the best solution. To understand PTAC units in detail, read this guide till the end.

PTAC Units – Overview

Simply put, the packaged terminal air conditioner or PTAC units are ductless cooling or heating systems. It serves as a convenient and flexible option for commercial purposes.

Hence, they are readily installed in motels and hotels where the guests need to regulate the temperature in their rooms without having any effect on the rest of the building.

Significance of PTAC units

A PTAC unit comes across as a simple yet cost-effective package. Listed below are some of the reasons why it’s the best solution as a cooling system.

Convenient: For installing a central air conditioning unit, complete ductwork will be necessary for the proper regulation of the cool air throughout the house.

With a PTAC unit in hand, the installation process becomes easy. Being ductless makes it easier for the system to be regulated and installed without any ductwork.

Cost-effective: In comparison to centralized air conditioning units, it is less expensive to install a PTAC unit.

However, the system must be used mindfully. In contrast to its alternatives, a PTAC unit tends to draw more energy. As a result, there won’t be any significant savings if the system isn’t used cautiously.

Controlled cooling conditions: A PTAC unit is capable of controlling an entire building centrally or its particular units or rooms.

It is capable of controlling the temperature conditions of any particular room without affecting the rest of the rooms or wasting further resources.

PTAC units – Based on the powering system

A PTAC unit can either be powered by electric heat or heat pumps.

Electric heat: A PTAC unit powered by electric heat is a convenient option for most users. It serves as a heater in colder months and as an air conditioner in hotter seasons.

Benefits of electrically heated PTAC units

  • Functions equally as a heater and a cooler.
  • Lower in cost at the time of purchase.
  • Less noisy compared to its alternatives.

Electrically heated PTAC units drawbacks

  • Becomes expensive with use.
  • Less energy efficient.
  • Heat pump: This option is best for people who are going to use the PTAC unit simply as an air conditioner without relying on it as a heating system.

Benefits of pump heated PTAC unit

  • Quick and effective cooling mechanism.
  • Energy-efficient system.

Pump-heated PTAC unit drawbacks

  • The expensive upfront cost of the system.
  • Less powerful heating unit.

What are the common problems with PTAC units?

Here is a list of the commonly faced problems with PTAC units.

  • Water leakage inside the building.
  • Constant crackling or humming noise.
  • The air conditioner stops emitting hot or cold air.
  • The mismatched temperature of the system.
  • The buttons are not working properly.
  • Ice formation inside the system.
  • The circuit breaker keeps tripping.
  • Noticeable cold drafts from the sides of the unit. It may lead to bursts in hot water coils.
  • Black molds inside the air vents, causing serious health hazards over time.

PTAC Repair – causes and its remedy

The PTAC units are generally wall or window units, providing warm or cool air. This is how a PTAC unit works.

The compressor directs the refrigerant to cool down the coils. The coils extract humidity and heat from the inside and send it to the outside.

For heating the room, the refrigerant warms the coil, directing the heated air into the room. This is a suitable option for dormitories, apartments, motels, and buildings.

Troubleshooting PTAC units

  • Regularly inspecting PTAC units

Whether it’s a hotel or an apartment room, proper maintenance of PTAC units is crucial for it to run smoothly and efficiently.

The PTAC units are prone to condensation formation. Hence, the PTAC unit must be checked often and maintained to prevent any failure and for it to run correctly.

Regularly scheduled maintenance service can be a good way to keep the PTACunit in check, preventing it from being neglected at all times.

  • Signs of moisture in PTAC units.

The PTAC air conditioner repair becomes crucial if condensation accumulation leads to mildew, mold, and odor formation. Moisture may build up within the building due to several reasons like leakage.

Regularly monitor the air vents and windows for early signs of mold formation. A musty odor, muggy feeling within the building, mildew or mold on walls or ceilings are common signs for inspecting and servicing the PTAC units.

  • Hygrometer for the room or building

If the problem is with a PTAC unit not cooling down, it may be due to too much condensation within the unit in addition to the natural moisture content in the outdoor air.

Monitoring the humidity within the apartment sounds like the best deal. With the help of a hygrometer, check the indoor air quality.

Higher than normal humidity levels within the building adds stress to the PTAC unit. Hence, added servicing may be necessary during the summer season.

  • Sizing the PTAC unit

Condensation may be higher if the system is oversized compared to the area. Hence it beats the common misconception that larger units equal quick and cheap heating or cooling.

To prevent severe condensation, a properly sized system must be placed based on the area within the room. Contact a professional to calculate the square footage of the area to be heated and cooled.

To conclude

Whether the problem is PTAC unit not cooling, clogged filters, iced coils, spitting water or irregular temperature conditions, PTAC units must be repaired immediately. This article covers the importance of PTAC units, their problems and preventive measures. To run the PTAC system efficiently, do not forget to inspect and maintain it regularly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can PTAC units be repaired?

Yes, a PTAC unit can be repaired and maintained for it to run smoothly. You will need a professional HVAC technician to inspect and repair the unit.

What do you need to access on a PTAC for proper maintenance?

For optimal PTAC unit efficiency, track with a maintenance log, clean PTAC filters, keep an eye on the power cords and logs, clean vents, gaskets and coils, grease the PTAC units and check for any air leakage.

What is the life expectancy of a PTAC unit?

The average life expectancy of a PTAC unit is usually seven years. With proper maintenance, the system may even last for 10 years at a stretch.

How do you service a PTAC unit?

To maintain the PTAC unit performance, professionals clean the condensation coil and base pan, clear or install new filters, wash the blower wheel, heating assembly and front cabinet.

Alongside, they verify the operability of pushbuttons, inspect and electrical connections, and verify the cooling and heating modes.

Are PTAC units energy-efficient?

The electrically-heated PTAC system is comparatively less energy efficient compared to pump heated PTAC units meant just for cooling.

How much electricity does a PTAC use?

Usually, a standard PTAC unit consumes 1.5 units of electric energy every hour, if the compressor remains on for the complete hour.



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