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How Are Rooftop HVAC Units Installed on Tall Buildings?

AFGO installation techs overseeing a rooftop hvac unit installation


One of the most memorable features of New York City is its unique skyline, but the tall buildings that create that view also present significant challenges for HVAC contractors working in the area. Due to space constraints at ground level, many of these buildings depend on rooftop HVAC units to provide heating and cooling, but when the equipment needs to be installed or replaced, just getting it into place can be monumental.

In this article, we’ll cover how commercial HVAC units are installed safely on the tall buildings that dominate the NYC skyline.

Skilled Rooftop HVAC Installation

Group of technicians on a rooftop while a crane lowers a commercial HVAC unit onto the roof.Industrial and commercial HVAC equipment, like packaged units or cooling towers, can often weigh thousands of pounds or even several tons. Moving such equipment into position on top of some of the tallest structures in the NYC metro area requires careful planning, a crane, and a team of skilled commercial HVAC contractors.

Every step of the process must be coordinated with local authorities, the building’s management team, and the HVAC installation team. The process will require obtaining the necessary permits, creating a safe work area, and controlling vehicular and foot traffic around the worksite.

Once the equipment is on-site and ready to be installed, the crane will lift it into position on the rooftop with the help of the commercial HVAC contractor, then carefully place it into position for the final installation. During the lift, it’s essential that everyone involved remain vigilant and follow all safety precautions to avoid serious injuries and property damage.

Once the equipment is in place, the HVAC contractor can complete all the finer details of the installation, from connecting line sets and the electrical supply to charging the system and installing the ductwork.

What Kinds of HVAC Units Typically Go on a Roof?

Depending on the type of business, its size, and its heating and cooling requirements, a variety of HVAC units can be found in industrial and commercial facilities in the New York City area, including:

  • Packaged rooftop systems: Rooftop HVAC units combine an AC condenser, evaporator, and fresh air intake into one unit, along with a gas-fired heat exchanger, to provide both heating and cooling in a compact package.
  • Cooling towers: In conjunction with chillers, cooling towers work to remove heat from industrial or commercial facilities using evaporative cooling.
  • VRF systems: Variable refrigerant flow systems use a centralized condenser unit outside and independent air handlers or fan coil units inside to provide heating and cooling throughout a building that can be adjusted to the needs of each room or zone.

Expertise Built on Decades of Commercial HVAC Experience in NYC

When you need an experienced, professional team to install commercial HVAC equipment on multi-story structures or hi-rise buildings in NYC and beyond, turn to the commercial HVAC specialists at AFGO Mechanical Services. With decades of experience installing and servicing rooftop HVAC units, businesses throughout New York City count on us for high-quality installations that are completed efficiently and professionally.

We’re OSHA- and EPA-certified, and safety is our top priority, whether we’re lifting an HVAC unit into position or performing routine maintenance. As a third-generation, family-owned company, you can expect superior quality and work, reliable service, and an unwavering commitment to our customers.

Call AFGO Mechanical today at (718) 478-5555 or contact us online to discuss a commercial HVAC installation in the NYC metro area.

At AFGO, we don’t believe in one-size fits all HVAC systems…
we succeed by providing our customers with alternative HVAC solutions.