While wall mounted units are the most common indoor units, ceiling cassettes are the next most common.When to Choose a Ceiling Cassette Unit
Ceiling cassette units are installed in your ceiling, with most of the unit hidden. They cover larger areas than wall mounted units, and in some cases allow you to control the direction of air flow.
Ceiling cassette units come in different styles and boast some different features to meet the needs of various applications.
Ceiling cassette units aren't going to be ideal for every room in your home, but they can be just what you need in some cases. They're rather discrete. The majority of the unit is hidden above the ceiling. The grille, which is approximately 1" thick, is all that shows. So if you're looking for a less noticeable unit that offers improved coverage, this may be what you're after. Just be sure that if you choose a model that doesn't come with a grille, you buy one separately.
If you have a large room that needs better coverage, a ceiling cassette can suit that need. They have four outlets that blow air - one on each side. Some models offer the option of closing one or two vents if you have a direction you'd rather not blow air. This comes in handy in a hallway where you might only want to direct airflow in two directions. If you install it near a wall in your living space, and you only want to direct air in three directions, you can close one vent so you're not blowing directly at that wall.
Because of their size, it's not likely they'll fit between the structural joists in some ceilings. If your ceiling is made of drywall or plaster, and there's an attic above it, then it likely has joists. The smaller ceiling cassette units are 2' x 2', and the larger units are 3' x 3'. Because of their size and dimensions, they fit rather well in drop ceilings.
Installing a Ceiling Cassette Unit
Ceiling cassette units operate best when they're installed in the center of a ceiling. This is because they have four vents directing air in four different directions. If, for some reason, you're unable to install the unit in the center of your ceiling, close off any vents that are aimed directly at a wall.
These units come with a built-in lift pump for removing condensate that's created by the cooling process. The lift pump gets connected to 1" - 1.25" rigid PVC piping that runs to the outside of your home. Because your ceiling cassette unit must be installed above your ceiling, it has to be suspended with rods or cables from the structure above it. You'll also need at least 10"-12" of available space above your ceiling to fit the unit.
If you're installing the unit in an unconditioned space, such as an attic, you must insulate the unit. Running a ceiling cassette unit in an unconditioned space without insulation will cause condensation to build on the outside of the unit and drip into your living space. Avoid installing ceiling cassette units near televisions, microwaves or other sources of electromagnetic interference to ensure effective communication with the remote control(s).
For accurate air conditioning, be sure not to install your ceiling cassette units near heat sources or in direct sunlight. The units themselves have built-in thermostats for reading indoor temperature and adjusting their output accordingly. Being in an area that's warmer or colder than the rest of the room will cause it to inaccurately condition your living space.
Other Features of Ceiling Cassette Units
Ceiling cassette units don't boast as many features as wall mounted units, but they've got a few options for different applications. Many of the features depend upon the brand or model you choose, so be sure to consider what features you need when searching for a unit that's right for your application.
If you're installing a ceiling cassette unit in a large family room, but would also like to condition a separate den that's adjacent to that family room, you may not need a separate unit. Some ceiling cassette models will support the use of a branch duct to move some of the conditioned air to that space, conditioning the family room and the den from one unit.
Many units are capable of being connected to a fresh air intake. This means that instead of continuously recycling the same air in your home, you can draw in, condition, and cycle fresh
air throughout your home. Again, while many units have this capability, not all do. Be sure that if you wish to draw fresh air into the unit, that you choose a unit capable of doing so.
In terms of temperature control, you can opt for either a wireless remote control or a wired-in wall mounted control. This also depends upon the make and model of ceiling cassette unit. Be sure to check what kind of temperature control comes with each unit before making your choice.
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