If you’re concerned with the energy efficiency of your home, it would be a good idea to make sure your heating and air conditioning system stays in good working order and continually operates at peak efficiency. Afterall, the HVAC system is like the lungs of your home, and many people don’t realize this, but heating and air conditioning accounts for roughly 50% of your home’s energy usage.
Knowing the various components of your system can go a long way toward helping you maintain it. Every HVAC system is made up of 8 main parts.
HVAC System Components
- Furnace – Your furnace functions to move air through the heat exchanger and into the air ducts. It usually occupies a large space in your attic or basement.
- Heat Exchanger – The heat exchanger resides inside the furnace, but is actually a different component that should be considered unique to itself. It’s job is to heat the air the air produced in the combustion chamber.
- Evaporator coil – This is the part of your air conditioning unit that resides inside the furnace and is cube shaped and contains a condensing coil. Refrigerant runs through the coil, absorbing heat that passes over it. The cold air is then dispersed through the air ducts and into your home.
- Condensing Unit – The condensing unit resides outside the home in most systems and is shaped like a metal cube. Inside there is a condensing coil which is similar to the evaporator coil and exchanges heat with air that passes over it to give off heat.
- Refrigerant tubes – These are made of metal and also reside in the furnace, connecting the evaporator coil with the condensing coil They’re designed to contain refrigerant with a wide range of temperatures.
- Thermostat – You’re probably aware of the thermostat, the small control unit on the wall connected to your HVAC system which sets the room temperature according to various times of the day.
- Air Ducts – Ducts are large tubes circulated throughout your home that move the air to every room. Air comes into the home through certain sections of the ductwork and then is circulated to rooms through others.
- Vents – Vents are the rectangular units attached to the wall in every room that direct or block air from the ducts. There are also return vents that move air back into the HVAC system.
As mentioned at the beginning, making sure your entire HVAC system is well maintained, and cleaned on an annual basis will maximize the efficiency and lifespan of your equipment.
Not only that, but it will also ensure you enjoy better air quality as a result of removing the buildup and airborne contaminants that accumulate in the system and especially the ductwork.