View Full Version : HVAC disconnect

M Kelekci
07-06-2007, 01:37 PM
I always thought disconnect needed at the air handler/furnace regardless of location. I was told by an HVAC contractor that disconnect is only necessary for furnaces located in the attic. He stated there is no need for a disconnect switch for a air handler located in utility room. Is he correct?

Thanks in advance.

John Arnold
07-06-2007, 01:59 PM
Matt - Take a look at
http://www2.iccsafe.org/states/seattle/seattle_residential/PDFs_residential/Chapter%2040.pdf for IRC code on disconnecting means.

Phillip Stojanik
07-06-2007, 04:39 PM

He is wrong.

An in-sight service disconnect is needed for an air handler/heating unit installed in a utility room. There is however an exception that might apply if a remotely located disconnect can be locked in the 'off' position.

The HVAC guy should know better than that but you really should direct your question to an electrician and not the HVAC guy. The electrician is the contractor who is ultimately responsible to see to it that an acceptable disconnect is present.

M Kelekci
07-06-2007, 07:24 PM
Thanks John and Philip. That is what I had thought.

Another question. Are the built in circuit breakers (50-60 amps) we see in air handler units acceptable means of disconnect?
Or does it have to be a switch?
Do we have to be able to see the disconnet?
Do you all open the cover to see if there is a breaker in the unit?

Thanks again.

Jerry Peck
07-06-2007, 08:04 PM
The disconnect is required to be installed at or in the air handler - regardless of where it is located.

Now, if there is a panel 'at the air handler location' the disconnect could be the breaker. But only if the panel was 'at the air handler location', otherwise, no breaker lock outs allowed.