The FCU functions as a fan that collects and circulates air in a space and then into the unit by blowing it over with a cooling or heating coil. This process results in air coming out of the unit that can be cooler or hotter than ever before.
Don’t be fooled by this seemingly complex procedure though — the FCU is a simple machine that simply consists of either a cooling or a heating coil and a fan. Compared to the air handling unit (AHU), the fan coil unit is not as complex and extensive. It’s a singular aircon system that can stand and operate on its own to circulate air without the existence of ductwork.
Additionally, most fan coil units function by controlling the temperature of a space through the use of circulated cold or hot water. Oftentimes, this water is taken from a central plant that is complete with the necessary equipment such as a cooling tower and boilers. These two then get rid of the heat and generate hot water, respectively.
Where are Fan Coil Units Used?
Fan coil units are prevalent in different buildings and establishments with small private spaces. Some of these buildings usually include small to medium offices and even private casino rooms. These units are usually controlled by local thermostats or sometimes, the building’s management system itself. In some high-rise buildings, fan coil units are usually positioned and arranged vertically. This arrangement results in the units being located one above the other in different floors and all connected by the same piping loop.
Apart from these establishments, shopping centres with multiple small spaces also prefer using fan coil units for their cooling. Since FCUs are much cheaper to purchase and install than air handling units, these spaces normally gravitate to it for better value for money and to complement their areas.