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Frequently Used Air Conditioning Terms
AFUE: Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency
Air balancing: The process of adjusting your A/C system so air is delivered in proper amounts for consistent heating or cooling throughout your home.
CO: carbon monoxide
Energy Star program: This government-approved branding, co-developed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), is used to clearly mark energy efficient products for consumers.
ERV: Energy Recovery Ventilator pulls fresh air into your home and expels stale air using a process that either preheats or pre-cools to reduce A/C energy usage.
Heat exchanger: The outdoor unit of A/C or heating systems where refrigerant condenses, converting from gas to liquid, and where cold and hot air is expelled.
Heat pump: Designed to deliver cooling and heating, this single refrigeration system is comparable to a furnace and an air conditioner in one system.
HEPA: High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance
Infiltration: This refers to air that penetrates your home through holes in and around plumbing work, insulation, window frames and doors, as well as heating and A/C systems.
R-value: A measure of resistance to heat flow through a given thickness of material
Split system: This two-part heating and cooling system usually consists of a heat pump and a separate A/C unit. Condensing units are installed outdoors with air handling units installed indoors. Refrigerant lines and wiring connect the units together.
SEER: Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating; An efficiency rating that measures energy usage needed to providing cooling over the course of a season. A higher SEER number means the unit is more efficient.
Zoning system: This is a single temperature control system for your entire home that delivers variable heating and cooling for each designated “zone,” or area, around your house. Each zone is equipped with its own thermostat to regulate humidity and temperatures to that zone alone.
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