Industry Terms Demystified
Some HVAC terms can be confusing, so below we provided a few important terms to demystify and inform you on the HVAC industry!
- Air flow: How much air your duct system can move through it.
- BTU: British Thermal Unit, a measure of heat energy. It is the amount needed to raise a pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. A better BTU rating means a greater and more efficient heating capacity in the system.
- Compressor: The compressor sits outside of your AC and raises the temperature, and the pressure of the refrigerant, as well as is the culprit of all the noise from your AC.
- Delta T: This means the difference in temperature.
- EER: This is an efficiency rating for ALL AC units.
- Geothermal heat pump: Geothermal pumps pull heat from the ground or source of water instead of outside air like a conventional heater.
- Heat Pump: This is a reverse air conditioner. In the summer it pushes heat outside and in the winter it pulls it inside.
- HVAC: Stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. It is also a general name used to cover the whole industry.
- Latent heat: The heat needing to be removed from the air in order to remove the moisture.
- Load calculation: One of the major parts of the design process, load calculation determines, how much heat is gained or lost in a house through duct losses, or from people, and appliances, and accounts for extra heat transfers through things like the sun shining on walls and roofs, as well as their ability to hold and store heat.
- MERV: The minimum efficiency reporting value. This rating is for HVAC filters. The higher the rating, the more things it catches and filters.
- Refrigerant: This is the fluid in your AC unit coils that carries heat and helps cool.
- Refrigeration cycle: The cycle that your air conditioner goes through to pick up the heat in the house and get rid of it.
- Sensible Heat: Sensible heat is heat you must remove from the air in order to lower temperature.
- Static pressure: This is the pressure inside of your duct system and can affect the efficiency and effectiveness of air conditioners.
- Supply: This is the duct system side that takes conditioned are and puts it back into the house.
- Tons (of air conditioning): This term stands for the capacity of an air conditioner and how many BTU’s it can remove within an hour.