HVAC Glossary Terms – Heating and Air Conditioning Knowledge
Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency. This is a measure of your furnace’s heating efficiency. The higher the AFUE percentage, the more efficient the furnace. The minimum percentage established by the DOE for furnaces is 78%
AHRI (Air Conditioning, Heating, Refrigeration, Institute)
This is an abbreviation for the trade association that develops the standards for measuring and certifying performance. The AHRI standards and guidelines are used throughout the world.
An air handler is usually a furnace or a blower coil. The indoor part of an air conditioner or heat pump that moves cooled or heated air throughout the duct work of a home.
An amount of heat energy that can be converted into useful energy from a fuel.
The blower pushes the filtered air from a return duct over the coil or heat exchanger. After the air is conditioned it then moves throughout the supply ducts to be redistributed into the home.
The compressor in a HVAC system is the part of the outdoor air conditioner or heat pump that compresses and pumps refrigerant to meet the needs of the house.
Central Air Conditioning System
Central air conditioning (or central A/C) is a system in which air is cooled at a central location then redistributed by air through a series of ducts and fans throughout a home.
The condenser coil is the outdoor portion of an air conditioner unit or heat pump that will release or collect heat and that depends on the time of the season.
A plate or gate placed in a duct that controls air flow by increasing the friction in the duct.
Specialized housing for air flow
This type of comfort system pairs an electric system with a gas furnace and alternates between the two fuel sources to maximize your efficiency.
Duct work found in your home or office, is a system of ducts (metal or synthetic tubes) used to transport air from heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment throughout your home. Properly installed, ductwork is the key to having good air quality in your home.
It is the primary contact point for warm air in a central air conditioning system. The purpose of the evaporator coil is to remove the heat and humidity from the air that is passing over it.
Fan Coil Unit (FCU)
Unit (FCU) is a simple device consisting of a heating and/or cooling heat exchanger or ‘coil‘ and fan. It is part of an HVAC system found in residential, commercial, and industrial building.
Fresh Air Intake
This is an opening in which outside air is drawn into the building.
This is a component of an hvac system that adds heat to air or an intermediate fluid by burning fuel in a heat exchanger.
A heat exchanger, in your home, is a heating component that is located in the furnace and transfers heat to the surrounding air. It is then pumped throughout the home.
Heat Loss or Gain
When determining a Heat Loss or Heat Gain calculation, your HVAC contractor is determining which size heating or cooling unit to put in your home.
The square footage of your home is taken into account, but more importantly the HVAC contractor is measuring the heat gain in the summer through windows, doors, and walls. They are determining how much heat is infiltrating your walls on a summer day and measuring how much heat is escaping in the colder winter months. A properly designed system is based on the amount of air getting in and out of the home so that it works to your satisfaction on either the hottest or coldest day of the year.
A heat pump is a HVAC unit that heats or cools by moving heat. In the winter, the heat pump draws heat from the outdoor air and circulates it using air ducts in your home. During the summer, this process is reversed. A heat pump will remove heat from the house and redistribute that heat outdoors.
A package unit is the all-in-one heating and cooling system for homes that don’t have a lot of room indoors for either a furnace and coil, or an air handler. Package units will contain all of their parts in one outdoor unit that sits on either the roof or to the side of a building.