Understanding HVAC Lingo

Have you ever spoken with your HVAC technician and just nodded along, even though you had no idea what he was saying? Did the industry jargon sound like a foreign language? You are not alone. HVAC lingo may make it convenient to communicate with others in the industry, but it can be confusing for the average consumer. Taking the time to understand frequently used HVAC industry terms will help you to make more informed decisions when it comes to taking care of your Manatee County home.


AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, and it pertains to the heating efficiency of a furnace. Higher ratings indicate higher efficiency levels. It is expressed as a percentage and is calculated by determining the amount of energy required to produce the desired amount of heat during the season.


The most commonly used term in the industry, yet many people aren’t clear about what it means. Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) pertains to all aspects of indoor air comfort including the air quality.


A Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV, measures how well an air filter removes harmful particles from the indoor air. The highest MERV rating a filter can get is 16. These are the filters used in hospitals.


North American Technician Excellence, or NATE, is a certification that most HVAC contractors look for when hiring technicians. NATE certification means that the technician has the knowledge and mindset necessary to provide you with outstanding service.


This is a big one for those concerned about energy efficiency. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, and it measures the efficiency of an air conditioner. If your SEER rating is low, it means that your AC isn’t operating efficiently.

There are many industry terms, but the ones presented here are primarily used and will help you to hold your own with anyone in the HVAC industry. If you have questions about other HVAC terminology or would like our help with any HVAC problem or concern, give Custom Air and Plumbing a call today at (866) 819-0992.

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