HVAC systems are complex equipment, and unless you’ve had the training to work on them, you’re likely to have many questions. So, here are some basic to help you understand how your system works.
How Do Furnaces Work?
Most people are aware that a furnace can heat their property, but you may be unsure about how exactly this is accomplished. A furnace warms the air and circulates it into your living areas. Furnace models can be electric or use natural gas, propane or oil.
Electric furnaces use heating elements to warm the air. The air is passed through resistance coils, so heat can be transferred to the air supply. It is then circulated by a blower.
Gas furnaces use an ignitor or pilot light to fire up burners inside the combustion chamber. When the burners produce heat, it moves into your heat exchanger, where the heat is transferred to the air. The system blower then moves this air throughout your home.
How Do Air Conditioners Work?
Air conditioner systems typically comprise of four elements; a compressor, evaporator, expansion device and condenser. Your indoor air circulates through your system, pulling air over the evaporator coils, where the refrigerant absorbs heat as it transforms from liquid to vapor. The gaseous refrigerant travels to the outdoor compressor where pressure and temperature are increased. When the refrigerant reaches the condenser, it is transformed back into a liquid, releasing the heat. The liquid refrigerant then cycles back through the system.
How Do Heat Pumps Work?
Heat pumps operate differently compared to other forms of heating and cooling systems. A heat pump can provide both heating and cooling, as it moves heat. Heat pumps are available as water source, air source or geothermal (ground source). For heating, the heat pump extracts heat from outside air. Although this may seem unbelievable, even low-temperature air still contains some heat. This heat is moved into the home until the desired temperature is reached.
For cooling, the excess heat from your indoor air is extracted and moved out of the home. This is deposited outside to achieve the desired indoor temperature.
The Need for a Professional HVAC Specialist
Now, you have an appreciation for the basics of your HVAC system; it should provide you with insight into why you need to choose a professional HVAC specialist for all your maintenance, servicing and repairs. Since your HVAC system is sophisticated, it requires proper care and attention to continue operating at optimum efficiency. Even minor issues can compromise efficiency and affect performance. Additionally, minor issues very rarely correct themselves and are more likely to develop into more serious issues. A professional HVAC technician can assess your system and inspect the components for signs of wear. This provides an opportunity for preventative maintenance and minimizes the risk of costly repairs.
Working with a professional HVAC company is also an excellent way to receive the answers to any HVAC questions, so you can ensure that your system is performing correctly and offering you fantastic comfort inside your home.