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What Is HVAC and What Is Its Purpose?

HVAC is a familiar term used in the indoor heating and cooling industry. However, not many people truly understand it beyond the acronym form. Not to worry! This post takes a deep dive into everything you need to know about an HVAC system, including what it is, how it works, and its overall purpose.

What is HVAC?

HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. It is a system that provides thermal comfort and acceptable indoor air quality control in residential and commercial buildings. The main purpose of HVAC systems is to maintain a comfortable environment by regulating temperature, humidity, and air quality. In a nutshell, it is a combination of three systems: heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.

How does it work?

The heart of every HVAC system is the air handling unit that provides thermal comfort, usually an air handler or furnace. It is powered by gas, oil, electricity, fuel cells, heat recovery systems, or solar energy. The source of power is not important because it sends heated or cool airflow via ductwork to other parts of the building, including walls, vents, and floors grills, to maintain the desired comfort level.


The HVAC system warms the air in your home using a gas or electric heating element. It then distributes the warm air via ducts to other air conditioning equipment in your home that needs it, like bedrooms and living room areas with floor grilles and wall vents.

Air Conditioning

The HVAC system cools down rooms differently depending on the unit installed. A central air conditioning system uses a cooling coil connected to an outside condensing unit. The unit then distributes cooled air via ducts and vents in the home. Alternatively, window units are small air conditioning systems that sit inside your windows for easy access.

Air Ventilation

The HVAC also helps improve indoor air quality by removing pollutants like smoke and dust from the air. It does this using a process called mechanical ventilation, in which an outdoor fan draws polluted indoor air into filters and then blows it out of your home via ducts under doors or through other vents.

What types of HVAC can you find?

There are several types of HVAC systems you can choose from depending on your requirements and budget:

Split systems: This air conditioner system is the most common and popular. It consists of an outdoor condensing unit and an indoor air handler or furnace. Split systems are efficient because they only cool or heat the areas needed.

Packaged systems: A packaged system is a single unit that contains both the outdoor and indoor components in one cabinet. It is a good choice for homes with limited space.

Ductless mini-split systems: A ductless mini-split air conditioner system is perfect for homes without air ducts. It consists of an outdoor compressor and one or more indoor units mounted on the wall.

VRF (variable refrigerant flow) systems: VRF systems are used in larger buildings and can be configured to provide heating, cooling, or both.

What is the purpose of an HVAC system?

An HVAC serves various purposes in a home or business, and these include:

Maintains a comfortable indoor environment

The HVAC regulates temperature, humidity levels, and air quality to help maintain a comfortable environment in your home or office.

Prevents moisture and mold growth

The HVAC system helps prevent moisture and mold growth by removing excess water vapor from the air using a process called dehumidification.

Eliminates allergens and pollutants

The HVAC helps remove allergens and pollutants from the air using filtration. This prevents them from being released into your home or office.

Protects furnishings, equipment, and structure of a building

The HVAC system protects furniture, equipment, facilities in our homes by removing potentially harmful moisture buildup that can lead to corrosion and decay.

Provides fresh air ventilation

The HVAC system helps improve air quality by removing tiny and harmful particles in the air. An outdoor fan draws polluted indoor air into filters and then blows it out of your home via ducts under doors or through other vents.

How do you choose an HVAC system?HVAC Specialists Vancouver WA

When choosing an HVAC system, you have to consider several factors, including:

  • The size of your home or office
  • Your budget for the project
  • Location and orientation of the building in relation to sun exposure
  • The climate in your area
  • Whether you need a system that provides heating or cooling

How do you properly maintain an HVAC?

To keep your HVAC running at its best, follow these tips:

  • Have your HVAC system inspected annually by a professional
  • Keep your air filters clean and replace them as needed (recommended on an annual basis)
  • Clean the coils of your outdoor condensing unit at least twice a year
  • Ensure all vents and ducts are unobstructed and free of dust, dirt, and other debris

How often should you replace your HVAC system?

Your HVAC system is the heart of a healthy home. It not only keeps your living/workspace comfortable but also helps reduce energy costs while removing pollutants from the air maintaining optimum indoor temperature and humidity levels. The system life span depends on the type installed in your home, but a good rule of thumb is to replace it every ten years.

Is HVAC worth it?

If you are looking for a system that can maintain a comfortable environment in your home or office, the answer is yes – an HVAC system is worth it! Not only does it keep you comfortable, but it also protects your furniture, equipment, and structure from harm.

Need HVAC services?

NW Solutions Heating & Air is your one-stop-shop for all your HVAC needs! We have a committed team of qualified technicians that can install, repair, and maintain your air conditioning. For anything HVAC Vancouver WA, don’t hesitate to visit our website or call us for more information!

Posted on by NW Solutions Heating & Air, LLC
What Is HVAC and What Is Its Purpose?

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