If you are in the market for a new HVAC system or find you are constantly in need of repairs, it can be helpful to learn the terms used by HVAC professionals. Here’s a glossary of HVAC terms to help you talk like a pro.
HVAC Terms: Common Acronyms
- AFUE: Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency to rate furnace efficiency.
- BTU: British Thermal Unit, which is a unit of heat energy. The higher the number the better the heating capacity.
- CAE: Combined Annual Efficiency to measure how much heat is produced for every dollar of fuel used for HVACs and water heaters.
- CFM: Cubic Feet Per Minute to measure airflow.
- HEPA Filter: High-Efficiency Particulate Absorbing which means a filter can trap and remove smaller particles from the air.
- HSPF: Heating Seasonal Performance Factor, used to rate heat pump efficiency. The higher the better.
- MERV Rating: Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value for filters. The higher the more efficient.
- SEER: Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio which measures energy efficiency for air conditioners. The higher the better.
These are the most common acronyms used in the industry.
HVAC Terms: A Complete Glossary
Here are the HVAC terms you will often hear thrown around by HVAC professionals:
- Air Handler: This is the component that blows cold or hot air through your home’s ductwork.
- All-in-One System: A system where all the parts are in one cabinet. Sometimes called a packaged system.
- Capacity: How much cold or warm air a unit can produce measured in BTUs for hot air and tons for cold.
- Compressor: This is the outdoor component of an AC unit or heat pump.
- Condenser Coil: The exterior part of an AC or heat pump to release and/or accumulate heat.
- Cycling: When the system turns on and off to maintain temperatures.
- Damper: A movable part to regulate airflow in the ductwork.
- Ductwork: The ducts that carry air through your home.
- Energy Star: The program that awards the highest rating to the most efficient HVAC systems.
- Evaporator Coil: Absorbs heat from the air from inside the system.
- Heat Exchanger: Allows heat to move from one fluid to another without touching.
- Heat Pump: Used to move heat or cool a space for a ductless HVAC system.
- Humidifier: Adds moisture to indoor air.
- Humidistat: Maintains humidity automatically.
- Indoor Coil: The interior part of the AC system that works with the outdoor unit.
- Load Calculation: The calculation used to assess a space’s energy needs to find the right size system.
- Modulating Heating: A more fuel-efficient heating system that adjusts to temperatures in the space.
- Outdoor Coil: Disperses heat from the outdoor unit from the refrigerant turning it from a vapour to a liquid.
- R-22 Refrigerant: This is the refrigerant being phased out and replaced with more eco-friendly, chlorine-free R-410A Refrigerant.
- R-410A: As above, the chlorine-free refrigerant meeting the newest environmental guidelines.
- Refrigerant: The substance used to create the cooling effect in AC systems.
- Scroll Compressor: A special compressor that operates in a circular motion.
- Split System: A ductless system using a heat pump or air conditioner with indoor and outdoor components.
- Thermidistat: The control that monitors temperature and humidity while regulating the system to maintain consistent temperatures based on the chosen setting.
- Thermostat: The wall-mounted control that regulates temperatures for the HVAC system.
- Ton: The unit of measurement for an AC’s cooling capacity.
- Ventilator: This system exchanges stale indoor air with fresh outdoor air.
- Zoning: How the temperature is controlled and the areas that are heated or cooled.
This HVAC glossary will have you conversing with HVAC professionals in their own language.
Speak Like a Pro to a Pro Today
If you would like to start a conversation about your HVAC needs, speak to the HVAC professionals at RB Heating ClimateCare.