Basic Glossary

HVAC 101: HVAC Basics & Terminologies

Understanding your (HVAC) heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system will help you better communicate your problems/needs with a tech professional and make better purchasing decisions. Not only that, you will learn the basic mechanical engineering behind cooling since we are in the Middle East. 

Knowing the basics will help you perform independently, saving you time and money. Get to know your HVAC unit by learning the essential glossary.

#1 What does HVAC stand for?

HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, also in short known as Air Conditioning within the industry. 

#2 What is an HVAC?

HVAC systems are primarily used to move air between indoor and outdoor areas, including heating and cooling residential and commercial buildings. Their purpose is to keep you cool or warm based on your requirement during the season. 

#3 How does the HVAC work? What components make an HVAC system?

Most common combined systems use a single blower to circular air through internal ducts in a home or ductless systems for different rooms or zones in the apartment or house. 

Overall, a few essential components make up a complete central air and heat system. These components are the following

  • Evaporator Coil
  • Condensing Unit
  • Refrigerant tubes
  • Thermostat
  • Ductwork
  • Vents
  • Heat Pump

Some of these components are modified based on the Middle East region design. 

#4 What is a Condensing Unit?

The condensing unit is always placed outside or on the roof. The condenser unit consists of a condenser coil, a compressor, a fan, and various controls. The condenser coil can be made of a material such as copper tubing with aluminum fins or all-aluminum tubing to exchange heat rapidly. 

The condenser fan is vital and circulates the air across the coil to facilitate heat transfer. Finally, the compressor is the heart of the system since it compresses the refrigerant and pumps it to a coil in the form of hot gas.

In air conditioners, the refrigerant is cooled at the condenser into a warm liquid and passes through a pipe into the evaporator coil, where it expands and cools. Then, the hot gas is pumped directly to the evaporator coil to provide heat in heat pumps.

#5 What are Refrigerant Tubes?

Refrigerant tubes connect your evaporator coil to your condensing coil. They are typically made of metal designed to hold refrigerants and secure indoor and outdoor units.

#6 What is a Thermostat?

Thermostats are intelligent devices mounted on the wall inside your house to control the temperature in a specific area. The smart Thermostats are adaptive, understanding your behavior and modifying the room set based on behavior patterns. Additionally, most of the features such as temperature, time, and much more can be on the smart thermostat can be controlled merely at your fingertips, aka smartphones.
There are several smart thermostats sold in the market, but some of the famous ones are Nest, Ecobee, Honeywell etc

#7 What is Ductwork?

Ductworks are long tubes circular or rectangular for distributing air in residential or commercial space. Some are concealed within the ceiling while the others are visible, usually found overhead.

#8 What are Vents?

Air vents are grills that are fixed on your ceiling, allowing you to control the direction of air marginally. 

#9 What is a Heat Pump?

A heat pump works for both heating and cooling. In the summertime, heat pumps hot air out of your home, and in winter, heat pumps do the exact opposite.

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