If your air conditioner is nearing its end and you’re in the process of trying to find a replacement, it’s important to know the industry jargon. The more HVAC terms you know, the easier it will be to understand the different options available to you.

These terms will help you decipher between the different types of systems and what benefits they have to offer.

Source: FamilyHandyman.com

Learn these HVAC terms:

Air Handler: Typically a large metal box and a basic component of your HVAC system, this fan or blower moves warm or cold air, depending on the season, through the ductwork and into your home.
BTU: Stands for British Thermal Units, and indicates the amount of heat your air conditioner can remove from a room. BTUs are extremely important when it comes to choosing an HVAC system that’s right for you as it also correlates with its size. An improperly sized air conditioner will end up costing you more each month on energy costs. Here’s an example of how BTUs and sizing come into play.
Charge: The amount of refrigerant in your air conditioner or heat pump.
Compressor: In short, it’s a pump. Known as the heart of your conditioning system, the compressor pumps refrigerant throughout it. While some may thing it cools air, it actually creates heat due to such high pressure.
Condenser Coil: A coil that alters gaseous refrigerant back to a liquid state, releasing the latent heat.
Ductwork: A system of tubing that transport heated or cooled air from your HVAC system into your home via the air vents.
Evaporative Coil: Tubing or pipes that contain refrigerant and allow it evaporate from liquid to gas while also absorbing heat in the process.
Heat Pump: A system that captures and transports heat. A heat pump cools your home by removing heat and warms it by transferring in heat from an outside source.
Load: A critical component to the sizing of your equipment, load is the amount of heating or cooling needed for you to maintain whatever the desired temperature is for your home.
Plenum: Attached directly to the air handler, the plenum is an air-distribution box that heats or cools the air, depending on the season, before distributing it throughout your home via the ducts.
Refrigerant: If it weren’t for this, air conditioning wouldn’t be possible. Refrigerant is the agent responsible for heat transfer, absorbing/releasing heat as it changes states (liquid to gas and vice versa).
SEER: Stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. This number indicates how efficient an HVAC system is. The higher the rating, the more efficient the system is.  The minimum SEER rating for today’s HVAC systems is 13.


At Interstate Heating & Air Conditioning, our ultimate goal is your complete satisfaction. If you are wanting to know whether you should repair or replace your HVAC system, we will do the math for you to determine which decision makes more sense. Give us a call for help deciding which HVAC system is best for your needs and budget. We will walk you through the whole process, even if you don’t know the difference between a condenser and a compressor.

For any terms that don’t quite make sense, feel free to give us a call! We want you to feel fully informed so that when it comes time to make a decision, there’s no hint of hesitation or misunderstanding.

If you’re in need of an air conditioning replacement, give us a call! We’d love to assist you in finding the perfect system that meets all your specific needs. Visit us online or give us a call: 405-794-8900.

You can also keep in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

[sgmb id=1]