What is a roof curb?
When a building is constructed, prior to the installation of the HVAC Rooftop Unit (RTU), the roof is cut, and a metal structure called a Roof Curb is installed.
Before installing a HVAC Rooftop Unit (RTU), the roof must be cut. A roof curb then separates the roofing material and the hole in the roof. The HVAC Rooftop Unit (RTU) then sits on the curb. Inside of the curb, you will connect the ductwork so that the cool air can flow into the building.
When installing or replacing a commercial-grade air conditioner, you will need to purchase a roof curb.
When do I need a curb adapter?
When you replace a HVAC Rooftop Unit, you will often find that the new system does not perfectly fit the same curb size or locations for the ductwork. Different units from different manufacturers, or even more modern units from the same manufacturer will almost always have a different footprint.
Therefore, before you install a new air conditioning unit, you will need to purchase a curb adapter.
A curb adapter is custom made by sheet metal workers to match the required dimensions of the new rooftop unit with the old curb. A well fabricated curb adapter will allow you to efficiently transition air from the new unit opening to the old unit opening.
When purchasing a curb adapter, always work with fabricators who specialize in welding, ductwork, and roof equipment. You will want to make sure that you are purchasing a quality curb adapter that will be easy to instal.
Why does it matter where I purchase my curb adapter?
When purchasing a curb adapter, you should always work with a fabricator who specializes in duct work and welding to ensure that the curb is perfectly made to the exact specifications that are necessary. A well fabricated curb is essential to the structural integrity of the whole system.
Before purchasing from a shop that mass produces curbs, consider how much time and money can be saved if you quote out your work to a shop that specializes in welding. You may be surprised to find that you can pay less money for a much better product when you work with a smaller, more specialized welding shop.
When ordering curb adapters or any other roof accessories, you will want to work with the best fabricators of welded sheet metal. A RTU can have a lifespan of 20 years, so you will need to purchase a curb adapter that is made to last.
Here are some questions you should consider asking your fabricator before purchasing a curb:
- What are your shop gauge standards? For example, Madon Sheet metal To meet our only uses 14-gauge black iron, 16-gauge stainless steel, and 16-gauge galvanized steel for our welded items. Heavier gauge standards allow fabricators to produce products that are easier to weld and install in the field.
- Are you working with a fabricator who can produce a variety of welded products so that you can be confident that your installers have everything that they need to finish the project on time?
- What is that quality of the linear box plenums, sub duct risers, curbs, self-leveling curbs, curb adapters, equipment rails, goose necks, weather caps, and other roofing equipment that your fabricator can produce? Are you able to order everything you need to get your project done on time?
- Which fabricators can offer the best product with the fastest turnaround time? Rather than always using the same shop, quote out your job to a few custom shops to make sure you are purchasing the best product.
- Can you see examples of your fabricator’s other work? Make sure that you partner with a fabricator who can not only provide quality curb adapters, but can also make excellent Sub Duct Risers, Roof Equipment Rails and other products.