In Carrollton, Texas, we rely on functional and efficient air conditioning to get us through hot, humid summers. But do you really know how your HVAC system works? It’s worth getting to know your HVAC system so you can be on top of any issues that may arise. Read on to get to know the components of your HVAC system.
The outdoor unit of your HVAC system houses parts that are responsible for cooling or heating the indoor air. It contains the compressor, which converts gas refrigerant to liquid and sends it through the coils of the condenser, which conditions the air that goes into your home. You should periodically check your condenser to ensure it’s free from dirt and leaves or lawn clippings so the air can pass over it freely.
The air moves through the outdoor unit with a fan. Twigs can find their way into the fan, so look for any kind of obstruction as part of your inspections. Always let a professional service any parts on the outdoor unit. It’s important to keep yard debris away, but if you suspect a problem, don’t try to repair it yourself.
The indoor unit is called the air handler, and it may be installed in a utility closet, basement, or attic. It’s responsible for circulating the hot or cold air throughout your house. Some air handlers are equipped with variable speed blowers and damper systems to control how the air flows. If the air handler comes equipped with a filter for the whole house, you’ll want to be vigilant about changing that filter on the manufacturer’s recommended schedule. The air travels into each room’s vent via the next part of your system.
Ducts and Vents
Rigid metal or flexible pipe ducts are placed throughout the walls and ceiling of your house to move the air into each room. When installed properly, they’re carefully sealed to make sure air doesn’t leak out. In the room, cooled and heated air blows from the end of a duct through a vent cover (also called a register) that’s in the ceiling, wall, or floor. Vent covers can be made of wood or metal, and some have dampers to control the amount of air being blown into the room. Make sure they’re not blocked by furniture to maintain maximum efficiency.
The larger metal grates in the walls are air returns, and they suck indoor air back into the system through a disposable or washable filter. The filters should be replaced or cleaned at least every three months and more frequently if you have pets in your home or allergy symptoms. Dirty filters can starve your system of airflow and decrease cooling and heating efficiency. Dirty filters also lower indoor air quality by allowing dust and other particles to remain in the air instead of being caught in the filter.
The thermostat is the brain of the operation. You set your desired indoor temperature and the unit will cycle on and off to maintain that set temperature. Modern programmable thermostats help your HVAC system to run efficiently and you can save money on energy costs. Rather than just being set to one temperature for the whole day, they can be programmed to follow a precise hourly temperature schedule based on when you’re home, away, and sleeping.
Many thermostats can also be controlled and monitored via smartphone apps for adjustments on the go. They can also adjust temperatures when someone is present in the room. This kind of programming helps avoid wild swings in temperature, which can cause the unit to run nonstop.
Now that you know more about how your HVAC system works, the professionals at Lex Air Conditioning and Heating are here to make sure it’s always in great shape when you need it. When you sign up for our annual maintenance program, we will inspect, clean, and repair each component as needed. Call us today at (972) 217-8955 to discuss how we can help you.