If you’re expecting service for your furnace or another component of your heating and cooling system, you’ll want to be ready for the visit, and understand the issues that are happening with your system. No one wants to spend money without being informed about what it’s for, and if you’re buying a new furnace or ductwork, you’ll want to know what you’re getting!

This is true in Decatur, AL and beyond. Surely, you’ve heard of thermostats, gas burners, blowers, and ducts, as they’re obvious parts of your system.

Here is a list of important HVAC terms you should know that you may not have heard of before:

  • What does “HVAC” Stand For, Anyway? The acronym HVAC simply stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. That is, everything that’s tied to your home’s temperature control and ductwork. If you need service in this area, call an HVAC professional.
  • Split System, Mini Split. If you’re looking for a new heating and cooling system, you may hear these terms. Split systems are small, ductless systems designed to heat or cool one section of a home. They’re often a part of a zoned system, where you control the temperature in each zone.
  • Zoned System. Often used with mini-splits, zoned systems are fairly new on the HVAC market. These systems often combine mini-splits and smart thermostats, allowing you greater flexibility with heating and cooling your home.
  • SEER Ratings. These ratings for air conditioning systems tell you how efficient a unit is at cooling your home. Higher ratings are better, and in the Decatur area, you’ll want a rating of at least 15 as of 2023.
  • AFUE Ratings. For heating, the AFUE ratings (annual fuel efficiency ratio) come in handy when measuring how much fuel actually becomes heat in your home. Higher ratings are better. The best ratings range from 94 percent upward. If buying a new gas furnace, aim for a rating of at least 90%.
  • MERV Ratings. If you buy air filters for your furnace, they’ll have a MERV rating. This is simply a number that tells you how good a filter is at collecting particles such as pet hair and dust. Higher numbers trap smaller particles.
  • Heating Coil. In electrical furnaces, this is the coil that creates heat. It replaces the gas burners found in gas furnaces.
  • Air Intake. In all systems, the air intake is the opening where oxygen enters your system, typically from outdoors. It can either provide air for combustion (gas furnaces) or simply replace air exhausted from your home.
  • Evaporator Coil. This component is simply a coil, typically with refrigerant, that cools air in your system. It absorbs heat so that your system can return cool, dehumidified air by using the blower and ductwork.
  • Heat Exchanger. This component allows your furnace to transfer heat to your home and also helps exhaust combustion gases. This coil-like part forms a barrier between your home and any dangerous gases. Your furnace will take the air from the outside of the exchanger and blow it throughout your home. These parts may also be called condenser coils.

Need an Appointment? If you’re in the market for a new furnace, AC unit, or simply inspection or repairs, contact us if you’re in the Decatur, AL area. We’re here to help you make sense of your heating and cooling and find the best solution for keeping your home comfortable all year long.