Refrigerant - Blog Posts by Tag

Learn Important Terms for HVAC Cooling Season

Learn Important Terms for HVAC Cooling Season | SherlockIf you experience cooling system troubles this season, you’ll have an easier time describing the problem and understanding the diagnosis and remedy your technician recommends if you know some relevant HVAC terminology. We’ve put together a list of frequently-used cooling-specific HVAC terms that can help.

  • SEER — This is an acronym for the efficiency rating given to cooling equipment, and it stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. It gives you the ratio of the equipment’s cooling output divided by its energy usage over one season. Numerical SEER ratings increase as efficiency improves, so higher-rated equipment is more efficient.
  • Capacity — Also referred to as cooling capacity, this tells you how much heat the equipment moves in one hour’s time. The common capacity measurement is a “ton,” which is 12,000 Btu of heat.
  • Refrigerant — This is the chemical compound used as a heat transfer mechanism in a cooling system. It gets pumped through the refrigerant lines and coils in a closed, continuous loop and transforms from liquid to gas form to absorb and release heat.
  • Air handler — The indoor portion of a split-system A/C or heat pump, the air handler houses several key cooling components including the evaporator, air filter, blower and condensate drain system.
  • Evaporator — Also called the cooling coil, this is where heat absorption occurs. Refrigerant enters the coil as a chilled liquid, then converts into a gas as it pulls heat energy from the indoor air.
  • Blower — This fan pulls stale indoor air in from the return ductwork, draws it over the coil for cooling, then circulates freshly-cooled air out through your home via the supply ducts.
  • Compressor — Your outdoor unit houses this vital component that pressurizes and pumps refrigerant through the system’s loop of copper lines and coils.
  • Condenser — Also situated in the outdoor unit is the condenser coil that’s responsible for expelling captured heat into the outdoor air. Refrigerant enters the coil as a hot gas and releases the heat it contains as it transforms back into a liquid.

To learn more cooling season HVAC terms, contact the San Diego home comfort pros at Sherlock Heating & Air Conditioning.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater
area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “YuryImaging/Shutterstock”

What to Expect From a Professional A/C Installation

What to Expect From a Professional A/C InstallationIn order for your air conditioner to handle the San Diego and Rancho Bernardo area’s summer heat efficiently, it must be installed correctly. Professional A/C installation by a skilled technician is done in a way that ensures your system reaches top efficiency.

Accurate sizing: An undersized air conditioner can’t meet your demand for cooling on the hottest days. To avoid this situation, some careless technicians deliberately oversize their systems, which causes temperature swings, humidity problems and excess component wear. A competent HVAC technician uses the Air Conditioning Contractors of America’s (ACCA’s) Manual J to accurately size every system they install. This requires collecting detailed information about the house, such as the number and size of the windows.

Improving your ductwork: Ducts that aren’t properly air sealed leak conditioned air and uninsulated ducts waste energy. Both these problems compromise your whole cooling system’s efficiency. Before your system is installed, your technician will inspect your ducts. If necessary, the technician will use mastic or metal-backed tape to seal the duct joints and add duct wrap or other duct insulation. Your technician might also make upgrade recommendations, such as reconstructing parts of the duct system to reduce sharp corners that slow airflow.

Assessing the airflow: Your air conditioner was manufactured for a specific rate of airflow. Too little airflow means you won’t get enough cool air and your system will run less efficiently. Insufficient airflow can also cause your evaporator coil to freeze, which can damage the evaporator and the compressor. With too much airflow, however, you could end up with temperature swings. After a professional A/C installation, your technician will measure for the correct airflow.

Measuring the refrigerant charge: Both a high and low refrigerant charge can impair your system’s efficiency. Low refrigerant will limit the system’s cooling capacity. Too much can lead to refrigerant entering the moving parts of your compressor, possibly destroying this component. For this reason, your technician will test the refrigerant charge after the system is installed.

For more information on professional A/C installation, check out Sherlock Heating & Air.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Diego and San Marcos, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Lisa F. Young/Shutterstock”

Your Air-Source Heat Pump and Its 3 Cycles

Your Air-Source Heat Pump and Its 3 CyclesWhether you are considering purchasing a new heat pump, or have recently installed one in you San Diego area home, knowing about air-source heat pump cycles is important to understanding the energy efficiency of this heating and cooling equipment. The three cycles – heating, cooling, and defrosting – allow heat pumps to keep your household feeling comfortable and saving money no matter the season. Continue reading “Your Air-Source Heat Pump and Its 3 Cycles” »

Airflow And Refrigerant — 2 Key Factors For Successful HVAC Maintenance

Airflow And Refrigerant -- 2 Key Factors For Successful HVAC MaintenanceIf your air conditioner isn’t cooling as well as it used to, or if you have hot and cold spots in your home, professional HVAC maintenance might be in order to keep your home comfortable, help control humidity and get years of reliable service from your system. Continue reading “Airflow And Refrigerant — 2 Key Factors For Successful HVAC Maintenance” »