Cooling and A/C Terminology to Know
You’ll have an easier time making informed decisions about your A/C system if you understand the words and acronyms used by HVAC industry experts. Some common terms are listed below.
An air handler is the part of an HVAC system that regulates and circulates air. The air handler is usually located in a large metal container with a blower and heating or cooling elements.
The direction of the distribution of air.
AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency)
An AFUE measurement tells you efficiently your system utilizes fuel. The more efficient your air conditioner is, the more cool air you will get per unit of fuel.
The boot is a transition piece that connects a duct to a grille or register. It’s made of sheet metal.
Checking the charge
This refers to the pressure of the refrigerant in your system. A technician puts gauges on the system in order to measure the pressure and see if you have the right amount of refrigerant.
A coil is a part that air blows over in the unit. It can increase or decrease temperature via heat transfer.
The compressor raises the temperature and pressure of the refrigerant in your system. It is located in the outside part of your A/C unit , and is responsible for most of the noise your unit makes.
Fan Coil Unit
A fan coil unit heats or cools a room without connecting to ductwork using a coil and a fan. Indoor air moves across the coil and is heated or cooled before being pushed back out into the room.
Geothermal heat pump
Sometimes called a ground source heat pump or GSHP, geothermal heat pumps pull heat from or dump heat back into the ground or a body of water in order to cool or heat a home.
Non-operable cover you see in return vents in your home.
A typical heat pump dumps or pulls heat to or from the outside air into your home. They can provide warm or cool air to keep your home comfortable all year long.
Refrigerant is a chemical used in air conditioners that expands and vaporizes to produce a cooling effect on the air. You may have heard it referred to as freon. Air conditioners in most homes use either R-22, which began a phase-out in 2010, or R-410a.
A split system air conditioner has a box with the condensing unit located outside the home and another box inside the home that has the air handler and evaporator coil. The two units are connected by the refrigerant lines.
Zoning is a way of controlling the temperature in different rooms in a home separately. It’s usually done with either separate controls for each space, or by opening and closing dampers within ducts in each zone.
Make Your Choice Based on Comfort, Not Budget
Your HVAC system plays a huge role in how you feel at home every day and night. Of course it also accounts for half of your home’s energy use each month. A reliable, energy-efficient heating and cooling system for your home can give you peace of mind, but you may not have planned for the expense of a new system, or may be unsure if you should just keep repairing your older less-efficient system. Consumer financing can help you make a new air conditioning system fit into your budget without breaking your bank. When you upgrade to a higher-efficiency system, each dollar you spend moving up to a can produce energy savings and comfort that you’ll appreciate for many years.
Learn more about financing that fits your budget