Understanding the terminology used by your professional HVAC team can give you an edge. If you don’t understand what they are saying, you might not be getting what you want – or worse, spending more than you need to.
Common HVAC terms:
AFUE – The Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating is a way to measure how well your furnace converts energy into heat. The minimum rating value for new units is currently 78 percent. The higher the AFUE is the more of your heating dollar is actually going to produce heat.
Air Handler – The air handler is the part of your HVAC system that is responsible for moving air through your ductwork. It is almost always a fan or blower coil in the furnace area.
Btu – British thermal unit. This is the amount of energy it takes to raise one pound of water one degree. It is used to measure the heating potential of a unit. The higher the Btu rating is the larger area it can heat efficiently.
CFM – Cubic feet per minute is a measure of how much air moves through a specific point in your HVAC system. Higher numbers indicate faster flow rates and faster air filtration.
Condenser Coil – The part of the air conditioning or heat pump system that sits outside the home. This is where heat is either released or collected depending on the time of the year.
Heat Exchanger – The furnace where heat is transferred to the air to be pumped throughout the home.
HSPF – Heating Seasonal Performance Factor is a rating system for heat pumps. Higher ratings indicate more efficient systems.
MERV – Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value is a rating system for air filters. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends filters with a rating of 7 to 13.
R-22 – The refrigerant that is currently being phased out by the federal government.
SEER – Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio is a rating system for air conditioners. Higher numbers indicate better performance.
For more information on HVAC terms contact Amarillo Air Conditioning, the trusted source for home comfort for more than 50 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Amarillo, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about HVAC terms and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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