Residential Air Curtains

residential air curtain for your back yard
The trend in using air curtains, also known as air doors for residential use has been skyrocketing in recent years. As more and more Americans are realizing that they want to extend their everyday living towards the outdoors. Most all homes in American have sliding glass patio door and more recently glass doors that extend more than 10, 20 or even 30 feet across opening up to outdoor living areas to patio, deck, pool and backyard landscapes with views. Like most Americans opening up doors to outdoor living results in flying insects inside your home and loss of expensive air conditioning. Standard screens just get in the way and create a barrier for entertaining. Air Curtains are deemed “a green product” due to lowering energy costs. At Air Door Distributors, we sell only the best air curtains made in the United States. It's finally time to keep those pesky flying insects out while saving on energy to cool your home.

Table of Contents

1. What is an air curtain?
2. What does an air curtain do?
3. How do air curtains work?
4. Are air curtains quiet?
5. Are air curtains effective?
6. Where are air curtains typically mounted in a home?
7. Are air curtains expensive to run?
8. Can air curtains be concealed or recessed?
9. What else can air curtains be used for?
10. Next steps – Buying your air curtain


What is an air curtain? 

An air curtain or air door is a special fan like appliance that uses air to create a barrier between indoor and outdoor spaces. The air creates a barrier from inside air and outside air resulting in temperature and environmental control. 

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) defines an air door as follows: "In its simplest application, an air curtain is a continuous broad stream of air circulated across a doorway of a conditioned space. It reduces penetration of insects and unconditioned air into a conditioned space by forcing an air stream over the entire entrance. The air stream layer moves with a velocity and angle such that any air that tries to penetrate the curtain is entrained. Air curtain effectiveness in preventing infiltration through an entrance generally ranges from 60 to 80%".[1] 

The Air Movement and Control Association (AMCA) defines an air curtain as: "A directionally-controlled airstream, moving across the entire height and width of an opening, which reduces the infiltration or transfer of air from one side of the opening to the other and/or inhibits flying insects, dust or debris from passing through".  In North America, the more commonly used term for an air door is "air curtain". 

What does an air curtain do? 

By forcing the air across the threshold of the door or opening, this creates a virtual wall between two areas:

  1. Temperature Control  – Similar to a door, an air curtain acts as a barrier between two rooms or spaces to control temperature and prevents hot or cold air from entering or escaping.
  2. Environmental Control – Keeps flying insects, dust, pollen and pollution from entering the space. 

An air curtain makes an amazing alternative to a physical door because it allows movement freely between two spaces without any obstacles.

How do air curtains work?

Air curtains are similar to fans in that they generate a controller stream of air. The difference with air curtains is that they concentrate air downward to create an invisible shield between spaces. 

There are two types of air curtains. Heated and Unheated. Heated air curtains also known as heat curtains are ideal for those who are concerned primarily for temperature control. Whenever we move air across the body, this is called wind chill which makes the air feel colder than it actually is. We add either Electric, steam or hot water coils to the air curtain to create comfort and a secondary heat source. 

Unheated air curtains are perfect for those who are using the air curtains for summer months for insect control and temperature control over open doorways. Again, the downward force of the air creates a seal from contaminants from entering. Insect control does require more air flow then just just temperature control and that is why we suggest using a variable speed control. Simply dial up for insect control when needed and dial down for temperature control. In this lower setting, making sure that air hits the floor is creating the seal needed. 

Are air curtains quiet? 

Some air curtains can be perceived as noisy especially in back door restaurant applications as these units need to be extremely powerful to ward off flying insects into kitchen areas. The good news is that Air Door Distributors sells units that are super quiet for residential applications. Here is a list of units that are extremely quiet. The Mars LoPro Series 36” is only 53 decibel (dBA).

What is dBA?

A decibel (dB) is a unit of measurement for sound, A-weighted decibels, abbreviated dBA, are an expression of the relative loudness of sounds in air as perceived by our ears. The National Institute of Occupational Safety (NIOSH) states that for a 115 decibel (dBA) sound, the exposure is just 28 seconds. Exposure to noise louder that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) safe noise level of 70 dB over 24 hours will damage hearing. 

Here are some examples of dBA:

30 dBA = Whisper
40 dBA = Refrigerator
60 dBA = Normal conversation
70 dBA =  Hair Dryer, Vacuum
75 dBA = Dishwasher

Here is a list of series that work well in a residential setting: 

MARS LoPro 2  (LPV2) , Quiet Pro (QP10) , Standard 2 (STD2)  , Phantom (PH10)  Series. 

BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) , Architectural Low Profile (ALC08) , Commercial High Performance (CHD10)  , Architectural High Performance (AHD10)  , Architectural Recessed 12 (ARD12)  Series. 

Are air curtains effective? 

Absolutely! Air curtains have been in the United States for over 65 years and back by many trusted organizations such as ASHRAE (American Society of Heating Refrigeration Air Conditioning Engineers), AMCA (Air Movement & Control Association), USGBC (U.S. Green Building Council) and IECC (International Energy Conservation Code). Not only will you be able to keep those pesky flying insects out of your home but will save money in cooling cost while doors remain open. 

Air curtains consume electrical energy during their operation, but can be used for net energy savings by reducing the heat transfer (via mass transfer when air mixes across the threshold) between two spaces. However, a closed and well-sealed physical door is much more effective in reducing energy loss. Both technologies are often utilized in tandem; when the solid door is opened the air curtain turns on, minimizing air exchange between inside and outside. 

An air curtain may pay for itself usually within 2 years by reducing the load on the building's heating or air conditioning system. Usually, there is a mechanism, such as a door switch, to turn the unit on and off as the door opens and closes, so the air curtain operates only while the door is open. 


Where are air curtains typically mounted in a home?

There are many doorways into a home but the most common areas where air curtains are used are patio sliding, single swing or French doors, large wall openings, back doors, pool house and garage doors. Most residential customers want to keep the flies, gnats, mosquitos and many other flying insects from entering the home. Most residential homes have screens that close off the area and most forget to close the screen to eliminate the entrance of flying insects. The other amazing benefit when mounted on the inside of the home is the huge energy savings. So not only are you keeping insects out but you are saving energy at the same time, genius!!! 

  • Residential Patio Doors: Sliding, Single Swing or French Doors
  • Patio sliding, single swing or French doors are the most common as they usually lead an outdoor entertaining area such as a deck, pool or backyard area. For the benefit of both insect control and temperature control, the most effective way to achieve this is to mount inside pulling in air conditioned air to keep hot air from entering while deflecting insects from entering. If you are using an air curtain for just insect control only then you can mount inside or outside as our units are listed for indoor/outdoor use. 

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Quiet Pro (QP10) Series    - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Phantom (PH10) Series with variable speed control. 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor

    BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) Series  - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Low Profile (ALC08) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial High Performance (CHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural High Performance (AHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Recessed 12 (ARD12) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

  • Residential Large Wall Openings (Moving Glass Wall)
  • Many home builders are offering large wall openings to be opened to the outside. Some openings span up to 30 feet across and use the NanaWall or Nano Door System. Imagine trying to control insects or air conditioning loss? Fear no more, Air Door Distributors can help you choose the best residential air curtains that are quiet and effective. Many units have a variable speed or set speed options to reduce noise. At the design stage some builders make provisions for in-ceiling unit to conceal. Most units are installed after the fact as we often recommend the use of a valance to hide the air curtain. With a valance, you can match wood, fabric and colors for your décor. 

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Quiet Pro (QP10) Series    - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Phantom (PH10) Series with variable speed control. 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor

    BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) Series  - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Low Profile (ALC08) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial High Performance (CHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural High Performance (AHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Recessed 12 (ARD12) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    residential air curtain for large wall

  • Back Doors 
  • Back doors that lead from the garage to an outside area with trash bins can attract unwanted flying insects. Using residential air curtains can eliminate flying insects from entering these areas. Flying insects do not like turbulent air flow and cannot fly so they avoid these areas. Mounting outside or inside is equal in controlling flying insects from entering. 

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Quiet Pro (QP10) Series    - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) Series  - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial High Performance (CHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    (insect residential back door pic) 

  • Residential Garage Doors 
  • Residential garage doors and air curtains are becoming more used to again keep out flying insects dust and fumes from the street. Many of our customer like to keep contaminants out while keeping their garage area immaculate. Residential Air curtains are most effective in achieving this goal. Both Mars and Berner have brackets that can suspend the air curtain in the bend of door track floating in front of this. In some cases if there is not enough mounting space, air curtains can be mounted vertically an blow air across. 

    residential air curtains for garage doors

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Quiet Pro (QP10) Series    - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) Series  - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Low Profile (ALC08) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial High Performance (CHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural High Performance (AHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    Whatever the residential application, Air Door Distributors has the answer. After 25 years, we have seen it all!

    (insert pic of high end residential garage door that is open) 

  • Pool House with large doors 
  • Some homes have an adjacent pool house that opens up to entertaining around the pool. This can be very similar to a garage door opening. In some cases multiple garage doors in a series are opened during hot summer times. Using a residential air curtain can keep out the flying insects and save you on huge energy bills. 

    residential air curtain for pool house

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Quiet Pro (QP10) Series    - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial Low Profile (CLC08) Series  - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural Low Profile (ALC08) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Commercial High Performance (CHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    BERNER Architectural High Performance (AHD10) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor 

    Are air curtains expensive to run?

    No, the energy usage of an air curtain is different depending on the size of air curtain and voltage to operate. Most units are fractional horsepower and the power requirements are offset by energy savings from running your HVAC system. This is huge if your doors are open for long periods of time resulting in a fast return on investment. Typically anything under 2 years for an ROI is excellent. 

    Can air curtains be concealed or recessed? 

    Yes! Some of our customers do not necessarily like the air curtain to be visible inside or outside of their home. We have some customers install indoors for temperature and environmental control and install a valance in front of the unit to match interior design elements. Units can also be recessed inside columns or drop ceilings in a wide variety of ways. For units that are concealed or a special application, it is always best to consult our experts. 

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS Phantom (PH10) Series with variable speed control. 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 8-10 feet off from the floor

    BERNER Architectural Recessed 12 (ARD12) Series - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor.

    recessed air curtain

    What else can residential air curtains be used for?

    In addition to insect control and temperature control, using the Mars UV Air Curtain can minimize viruses and pathogens from the air curtain internal components and out air flow thereby helping sanitize your interior spaces. The Mars UV Air Curtain may reduce or eradicate TB, Listeria, Salmonella, MRSA and Serratia Marcescens as well as SARS-COV (2003) and COVID-19 through continual air exposures. For more in-depth information with downloads, please go to our UV page:

    Here are some standard door sizes in widths (Note multiple units can be used for longer widths): 

    MARS LoPro 2 (LPV2) UV Air Curtain Series36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 7-8 feet off from the floor 

    MARS Standard 2 (STD2) UV Air Curtain Series   with variable speed control. - 36, 42, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and 144 for mounting max mounting of 10-12 feet off from the floor.

    uvc air curtain for residential use

    Next steps – Buying your air curtain 

    If you are ready to make a purchase, browse our air curtain collection. Keep in mind that Air Door Distributors is just a phone call away from getting expert advice at 866-402-1642 or LiveChat or fill out our online contact form

    We look forward to helping you with your air curtain application!