Whether designed for a hospitality, higher education, or multifamily housing application, it is important for HVAC technology to meet current energy and comfort standards.

Because technology is changing at a rapid pace, breakdowns are often opportune times to upgrade the HVAC system.

It is a misconception that full replacement is the only option available to control energy costs and improve occupancy comfort. While it is one of the available options to consider, traditional overhauls of the system can sometimes require a building to shut down entire floors or risers for days.

However, as it is becoming more common to retrofit old infrastructures, modern fan coil solutions that enable quick, easy repairs without sacrificing comfort are becoming more popular.

Focusing on cost, comfort, and convenience, let’s take a look at some of the top qualities driving fan coil replacement in retrofits, specifically modular high-rise units or vertical stack fan coils, which are suitable for a wide range of applications and are, in general, among the most commonly used.



Modern fan coil designs can save time and money during a retrofit project. Selecting a unit that is compatible with the existing system with respect to size and performance minimizes the need for overly expensive renovations.

New replacement options can seamlessly slide into existing infrastructure, eliminating the need to shut down entire risers. Instead, replacements can be done on a room-by-room basis in three simple steps, which can be completed in less than four hours by a trained technician.

The three-step procedure includes:

  1. Removal of the original component from the existing unit and trimming the cabinet and drywall as needed;
  2. Sliding the new system in. Since the existing cabinet space is used, the installer can simply hook up the new unit to the current electrical connections; and
  3. Reconnecting the power and control wiring and installing the thermostat.

From here, the system can be started, and operations can be tested and verified. 



Indoor air quality and temperature control are crucial aspects building owners must consider in order to create a comfortable environment for occupants.

Especially for buildings where windows don’t open, ventilation relies heavily on the performance of the mechanical equipment.

Modern fan coils are designed to economically and efficiently regulate temperature and humidity, as well as minimize the amount of outdoor air introduced to the environment. They also feature closed-cell insulation and electronically commutated motors (ECMs), which can help enhance the comfort of the tenants and the overall energy efficiency of the building.

In addition to these benefits, the cabinet design also helps to reduce sound.



In order to run efficiently, it is important that fan coils be serviced at regular intervals. Depending on their usage, some fan coils need their filters changed once a month or once every three months.

Installing an accessible unit without causing much disruption to the occupants is critical. New fan coil solutions allow for easier access to parts, simplifying the maintenance process. This includes the ability for all major components, including the motor/blower, control box, or coil to be easily removed and serviced. The slide-out feature also allows the option for service to be completed away from the occupied space, eliminating downtime.

Fan coil replacements do not have to be expensive and disruptive. Building owners for hotels, campuses, etc. are finding new technology can fill the gap for fast and easy replacements without sacrificing comfort or efficiency.

Replacements offer a highly efficient system for a long period of time while maximizing return on investment. 

Publication date: 1/22/2018

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