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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Posts
    20
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    Carrier FNCCABCC0021 filter cabinet vs others

    For my new system, I'm contemplating having the installer add a filter cabinet (like Carrier's FNCCABCC0021) to my upcoming FV4C air handler if it's not a huge difference in price.

    The main appeal of Carrier's filter cabinet is that it looks like it would almost take the installer longer to remove it from the shipping box than to actually install it in the air handler stack (the air handler will be in upflow configuration, sitting on a stand, in a closet, drawing return air through the plantation-style louvers on the closet's bifold doors... 6' x 80" opening).

    1. Does their filter cabinet physically replace/block/eliminate the existing 1" filter tray that's built in to the FV4C, or does it sit below it without interfering with it? I know you aren't supposed to use BOTH 4" and 1" filters simultaneously... I just want to make sure that I'm not forever committing myself to using ONLY expensive 4" filters thereafter, and that if I ever find myself in a position where I can't justify the cost of expensive 4" filters, I can just stick cheap 1" filters in the original filter tray and leave the 4" filter cabinet empty.

    2. Can it use ONLY 4" filters, or does it have adjustable rails to optionally allow the use of thinner filters instead (say, 2"... or even 1", if it blocks the use of the FV4C's built-in 1" filter slot)?

    3. Does it take what most people would reasonably classify as standard-sized filters widely and abundantly available from most third-parties, or did Carrier alter their dimensions *just* enough to make filters not explicitly made by them (or at least, made by third parties to some not-quite-standard size) not fit properly?

    #3 is a big sticking point for me. My present system that's being replaced has a filter rack that has driven me crazy since the day I bought the house (and won't be used for the new system). It's nominally 20x20... but no "20x20" filter I've found has EVER fit properly. They're always at least a fraction of a millimeter too large. The only filters I can get to fit at all are the cheapest spun green fiber ones available from Home Depot, and to get THOSE to fit, I have to carefully pull out the tabs, cut an angled slice from the receiving end of each tab, and put them back together. I've sworn that this time around, I'm going to make sure that my new air conditioner is capable of using normal, off-the-shelf filters.

    So far, I've seen at least three different sizes quoted for Carrier's filter media for the cabinet:

    * 20 x 20 (nominal size)

    * 19" x 19-3/4"

    * 19.125" x 19.8125"

    If Carrier's filter cabinet DOES impose a requirement for nonstandard filter sizes, are there any better third-party ones that are nevertheless "plug and play" (or at least, "place-and-bolt") compatible without extensive field modifications (or literal duct tape) and simply sit on the rack at the bottom of the AHU stack like Carrier's does... with the screw holes pre-drilled and in the right places... but with the added benefit of using "normal" filter sizes and the flexibility to use 2", 4", and maybe even thicker filters?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Metro Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    556
    Post Likes
    The short answer is that the Carrier 4" media cabinet is an oddball size that won't take a standard 20x20x4 filter. That being said, there are options for aftermarket filters that fit the cabinet. Not sure if they'll take a 1" or 2" filter, but most media filter cabinets won't either.

    A decent installer should be able to use a standard 20x20 media filter cabinet with that air handler, which would allow you to run to any hardware or big box store and pick up replacement media on short notice. Using the Carrier cabinet you'll have to get media from a contractor or order them online.

    Neither media cabinet will block or replace the built in 1" rack on the air handler, but if you want to go the 1" filter route you'll have to special order them since they're also an oddball size.

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