Heating & Cooling Terms You Should Know – Part 2
More heating and air conditioning phrases, words and acronyms that you may need to know.
- A Heat Exchanger is the part of a heating system that transfers heat to the air that circulates throughout a home. The heat exchanger is the largest component of a furnace. Over time, a heat exchanger can develop cracks, causing incomplete fuel combustion and dangerous carbon monoxide to be released into the air that is circulating in a home.
- HVAC is short for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. It refers to a furnace, air conditioner, and some method of circulating warm and cool air throughout a house. H-VAC is the generally accepted name for the entire industry.
- Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) is a rating for air filters. Air filters have tiny holes that allow air to pass through while trapping small particles in the air. The higher the MERV rating, the smaller the holes and more efficient filters.
- Micron is a unit of measurement. One micron is one-millionth of a meter, or 1/25,000th of an inch. Tiny particles of mold, viruses, dust and dander circulate with your home’s air. An air filter can trap these tiny one-micron particles. If allowed to circulate, the particles can have harmful effects on your health.
- NATE Certification (NATE) North American Technician Excellence is an industry training and testing organization that certifies that service technicians have passed rigorous testing and are certified experts in the HVAC industry. Homeowners can be comfortable knowing that NATE-certified technicians are installing and servicing the heating and cooling equipment in their homes.
- Particles are substances that measure less than 100 microns in diameter. Some large particles like dust and dander are visible to the naked eye. Others like bacteria and viruses can only be seen with a microscope. All particles can become airborne and sometimes cause serious health problems.
- Refrigerants are chemical compounds that produce a cooling effect while expanding. R22 refrigerant, also known as Freon, is still found in many home air conditioners but has been banned from new systems. R410-A refrigerant is the most common replacement for R22. It does not contain the ozone-depleting qualities of R22.
- A Ton is a unit of measurement of cooling capacity. One ton of air conditioning can remove 12,000 BTUs of heat in one hour. Home air conditioners or heat pumps typically come in the 2-ton to 5-ton range.
- A Smart Thermostat will observe the time you wake up, go to work, return home, and go to bed. Then it adjusts its settings to match your daily routine. It will even observe that your house is empty for multiple days and adjust accordingly. If your smart thermostat is online, you can tell it to warm or cool your home just before you arrive.
- Zoned HVAC is a heating and cooling system that can direct air to specific areas of a home. With a zoned system, it is possible to use dampers in the ductwork to customize temperature zones throughout the home.