Air Conditioning Terms You Should Know

Do you ever dread calling a mechanic, pest control company, or other service provider because you don’t quite know how to explain the problem or service need?

Even more frustrating is when they don’t really get what you’re saying and the best they can offer is: “The service technician will discuss this with you when he arrives.”

Take your central air conditioning system just as one example. As in, wouldn’t life be so much easier if you just knew enough industry lingo to properly communicate your service request? Of course it would. So, with that in mind, here’s a small bit of AC terminology that can go a long way toward advancing the cause of clear communication.

Air Conditioning Terminology

BTUh – British thermal units per hour. For example, 12,000 BTUh equals one ton of cooling.

Thermostat – Monitors and controls the functions of a heating and cooling system.

Split System – The most common type of system installed, it’s the combination of an outdoor unit (heat pump or air conditioner) with an indoor unit (air handler or furnace).

Compressor – Often called the heart of the system, it circulates refrigerant from the indoor evaporator to the outdoor condenser and back again.

Condenser Fan – It distributes air over the condenser which cools it to the desired temperature.

Condenser Coil – Also called the outdoor coil, it’s a series of tubes filled with refrigerant that remove heat from the gaseous refrigerant and converts it back to a liquid state.

Evaporator Coil – Also called the indoor coil, it’s a network of tubes filled with refrigerant that removes moisture and heat from indoor air as liquid refrigerant evaporates.

Refrigerant – The chemical used in refrigerators, heat pumps, and air conditioners to move heat into or out of an interior space. By boiling at a very low temp, it can evaporate and absorb heat.

Refrigerant Charge – The amount of refrigerant required in a system.

MERV – An abbreviation for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value which is the standard method for comparing the efficiency of an air filter. Ranging from 1 to 16, it measures how well a filter removes particles from the air. The higher the rating, the better.

SEER – Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a measure of annual or seasonal efficiency of a central AC system or heat pump. The higher a unit’s SEER, the greater its energy efficiency.

Whether you speak our language or not, Air Professionals has you covered. We service and repair all makes and models of residential AC systems. We’re also at our best when sizing, recommending, and installing new or replacement systems. Contact us today or anytime for prompt, courteous, and professional service results.

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