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Air Conditioner - A system that keeps air cool and dry.

BTU - British Thermal Unit, a measure of heat energy. It is the amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. Chloroflurohydrocarbons (CFC) - A fluorocarbon with chlorine, formerly used as a refrigerant before its environmental effects were realised. Compressor - A machine for compressing gases; especially air. Condenser - An instrument for condensing air, consisting of a cylinder having a movable piston to force the air into a receiver, and a valve to prevent its escape. Controller - The panel that controls the air conditioning system. In an installed system it is usually wall mounted with a temperature display. Dehumidifier - A dehumidifier is simply an air conditioner that has both its hot and cold coils in the same box. A fan draws the room's air over the cold coil to condense the moisture. The dry air then passes through the hot coil to heat it back up. A dehumidifier can be useful in environments containing sensitive electrical equipment like computer server rooms. Enhanced Capital Allowances (ECA) A tax relief given through the tax system by reducing the taxable profits of the business. The ECA scheme builds on existing statutory provisions, under which businesses may obtain tax relief, in the form of capital allowances, for their investment in plant and machinery. Evaporation - The process by which any substance is converted from a liquid state into vapor. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) The IEEE is a non-profit, technical professional association of more than 360,000 individual members in approximately 175 countries.Through its members, the IEEE is a leading authority in technical areas ranging from computer engineering, biomedical technology and telecommunications, to electric power, aerospace and consumer electronics, among others. Heat Exchanger - A device that transfers heat from one liquid to another without allowing them to mix. Heat Reclaim Ventilation (HRV) - With an HRV system temperature and humidity are efficiently exchanged between supply and exhaust air. This process recovers energy losses and considerably reduces the air conditioning load. Heating and Ventilation Contractors Association (HVCA) Professional body for companies involved in the heating and air conditioning industries, members must under go an inspection of their work and vacilities. Humidty - The moisture in the atmosphere which is perceptible to the eye or touch. The humidity is determined by the quantity of water vapour in the air.

Hydroflurocarbon (HFC) - A fluorocarbon emitted as a by-product of industrial manufacturing. It has been suggested as a replacement for thechlorofluorocarbon (CFC) coolant gas used in chillers and air conditioners. Local Area Network (LAN) - More expensive modern air conditioning systems can be controlled remotely over a digital network, allowing one controller to monitor and maintain the climate across a whole building. National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting (NICEIC) Contractors approved by this organisation must comply with British Standard BS 7671. Portable Air Conditioner - Small movable units that can be hired to supplement a rooms existing cooling. These are often a useful short term solution during the Summer months. Variable Air Volume (VAV) - Variable Air Volume or VAV systems control the air volume. The simplest control is a simple On-Off control of fans but the complex damper controls are more common as variable speed control of fans is the most economic method to control the air volume. Variable Refrigerant Volume (VRV) Is a type of system consisting of anywhere up to 40 indoor units connected to one outdoor condensing unit. The refrigerant flow is varied by using either an inverter controlled variable speed compressor, or multiple compressors of varying capacity to respond to changes in the cooling or heating requirement. VRV systems are suitable for offices, restaurants, hotels, theatres, hospital, universities and industrial buildings among others. They are highly versatile and come with a variety of indoor units. Refrigerant - A substance used to provide cooling. Room Temperature - This is an often quoted figure of around 20C. Subcooling - To cool a liquid below its freezing point without it solidifying into ice. Superheat - To heat a liquid above its boiling point without converting it into vapor. Thermostat - A device for automatically regulating temperature by starting or stopping the supply of heat.

HVAC glossary of terms

Terms and technical definitions for heating, cooling and indoor air quality products.
Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency is a measure of your furnace's heating efficiency. The higher the AFUE percentage, the more efficient the furnace. The minimum percentage established by the DOE for furnaces is 78%.

The distribution or movement of air.

Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI)

ARI is an industry trade association that develops standards for measuring and certifying product performance. For instance, ARI Standard 270 provides guidelines for establishing sound levels for outdoor air-conditioning equipment.

Air Handler/Coil Blower

The indoor part of an air conditioner or heat pump that moves cooled or heated air throughout the ductwork of your home. An air handler is usually a furnace or a blower coil.

Microscopic living organisms suspended in the air that grow and multiply in warm, humid places.

A British thermal unit is a unit of heat energy. One Btu is the amount of heat required to raise one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. The higher the Btu rating, the greater the heating capacity of the system. Back to top

British thermal units per hour.

The Combined Annual Efficiency is a measure of the amount of heat produced for every dollar of fuel consumed for both home and water heating.

Carbon Monoxide
An odorless, colorless, tasteless, poisonous and flammable gas that is produced when carbon burns with insufficient air.

Central Air Conditioning System

System in which air is treated at a central location and distributed to and from rooms by one or more fans and a series of ducts.

Stands for Cubic Feet per Minute. This measurement indicates how many cubic feet of air pass by a stationary point in one minute. The higher the number, the more air is being moved through the ductwork by the system.

Composite Fan Blades

Used in select Lennox outdoor air conditioner or heat pump units, blades are manufactured with rugged materials and an exclusive angled design that improve operation and durability, even in the harshest environments.

The part of the outdoor air conditioner or heat pump that compresses and pumps refrigerant to meet household cooling requirements.

Communication Module

A component of a SunSource Home Energy System, a communication module allows you to view system status and environmental benefits in real time.

Condenser Coil
The outdoor portion of an air conditioner or heat pump that either releases or collects heat, depending on the time of the year.

A movable plate, located in the ductwork, that regulates airflow. Dampers are used to direct air to the areas that need it most. Typically used in a zoning application.

A decibel is a unit used to measure the relative intensity of sound. Back to top

The Department of Energy is a federal agency responsible for setting industry efficiency standards and monitoring the consumption of energy sources.

Dual Fuel
A comfort system that pairs an electric heat pump with a gas furnace, providing an energy-efficient alternative to the conventional furnace/air conditioner combination.

The method by which air is channeled from the furnace or the blower coil throughout your home.

Electronic Air Cleaner

An electronic device that filters out large particles and bioaerosols in indoor air.

An EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) designation attached to HVAC products that meet or exceed EPA guidelines for high-efficiency performance above the standard government minimums.

The Environmental Protection Agency develops and enforces federal environmental regulations. The EPA oversees the nationwide ENERGY STAR program.

Evaporator Coil
The part of the air conditioner or heat pump that is located inside the air handler or attached to the furnace. Its primary function is to absorb the heat from the air in your house. Back to top

Stands for "frequently asked questions."

Garage Heaters
Garage heaters are an excellent product for combating cold garages and workshops during the winter months. Heating capacities provide warmth for a 1 car garage up to a 4+ car garage application. Separated combustion models provide heating for hard-to-heat applications. Available in natural or propane gas, units should be installed by a Lennox dealer/installer.


A grid-tied system is the most common and least expensive of all residential solar systems. It allows you to use your own solar-generated electricity to save energy and reduce costs. At times when the solar system isnt producing electricity, such as at night, electricity is provided by the utility companys grid, or network of power stations.

Heat Exchanger
Located in the furnace, the heat exchanger transfers heat to the surrounding air, which is then pumped throughout the home.

Heat Pump
A heat pump is an HVAC unit that heats or cools by moving heat. During the winter, a heat pump draws heat from outdoor air and circulates it through your home's air ducts. In the summer, it reverses the process and removes heat from your house and releases it outdoors.

Horizontal Flow
When an air handler or furnace is positioned on its side and circulates air in one end and out the other. Ideal for attic or crawl space installations.

The Heating Seasonal Performance Factor is the heating efficiency rating for heat pumps. The higher the rating, the more efficient the heat pump. HSPF will be regulated in 2006 at 7.7.

An indoor air quality device that introduces moisture to heated air as it passes from the furnace into the ductwork for distribution throughout the home.

An automatic device used to maintain humidity at a fixed or adjustable set point. Back to top

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning.

Refers to products from the Dave Lennox Signature Collection of heating, cooling and humidity control products that are configured to work with the icomfort Touch programmable thermostat as an advanced home comfort system.

icomfort by Lennox System

Lennox most advanced heating, cooling and humidity-control products synchronize with the icomfort Touch thermostat to deliver maximum comfort, performance and efficiency.

Indoor Coil
See Evaporator Coil.

Interconnection Agreement
(See net metering.)

ISO 9000
A family of international standards for quality management and assurance.

MERV Rating

The MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) rating of a filter describes the size of the holes in the filter that allow air to pass through. The higher the MERV rating, the smaller the holes in the filter, the higher the efficiency.

A unit of measure equal to one millionth of a meter, or one thousandth of a millimeter.

Net Metering
With this service, which is available from many utility providers, you can get full retail value for most, if not all, of the electricity produced by your own generating system, such as a SunSource Home Energy System. Your utility meter keeps track of the net difference between the electricity you use from your utility provider and the electricity you produce with your own system.

Air contaminants in the form of gases.

Off-grid or Off-the-grid
An off-grid electricity-generating system operates independently from the utility grid, providing all of the electricity needed in the home. Stand-alone systems are much more expensive than grid-tied systems. However, for homes located in remote areas without utility service, or where installing power lines would be extremely costly, a stand-alone system is a good option.

Outdoor Coil
See Condenser Coil.

Any substances measuring less than 100 microns in diameter. The EPA has found that small particles (less than 2.5 microns) are responsible for the health effects of greatest concern.

Programmable Thermostat
A thermostat with the ability to record different temperature/time settings for your heating and/or cooling equipment. Back to top

R-410A Refrigerant
A chlorine-free refrigerant that meets the EPA's newest, most stringent environmental guidelines.

A chemical that produces a cooling effect while expanding or vaporizing. Most residential air conditioning units contain the standard R-22 refrigerant, or Freon.

Refrigerant Lines
Two copper lines that connect the outdoor air conditioner or heat pump to the indoor evaporator coil.

Scroll Compressor
A specially designed compressor that works in a circular motion, as opposed to up-and-down piston action.


The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio is an energy efficiency rating for air conditioners. The higher the SEER, the better the energy performance, the more you save. The DOE's established minimum SEER rating for cooling is 13.00.

SilentComfort Outdoor Fan Motor

Used in select Lennox outdoor air conditioner or heat pump units, the fan motor is designed with innovative electronic sensor technology that helps optimize overall system performance while keeping sound levels low.

Single Package
A heating and cooling system contained in one outdoor unit. Back to top

Split System
An HVAC system in which some components are located inside the structure of the house and some are located outside. Split systems should be matched for optimal efficiency.

Solar Module
A component of a SunSource Home Energy System, solar modules mount on the roof to harness solar power to reduce heating and cooling costs.

Solar Ready
A term used with select air conditioners and heat pumps from the Dave LennoxSignature Collection, solar ready means the systems can be integrated with solar modules in a SunSource Home Energy System.

Monitors temperature and humidity and adjusts heating or cooling system to maintain desired levels.

Usually found on an inside wall, this device operates as a control to regulate your heating and cooling equipment, allowing you to adjust your home comfort at the touch of a switch.

Unit of measurement for determining cooling capacity. One ton equals 12,000 Btuh.

Two-Stage Operation
Provides two levels of heating or cooling output for greater temperature control, energy efficiency and improved indoor air quality.

When an air handler or furnace is installed in an upright position and circulates air through the side or bottom and out through the top. Typically used in basement, closet and attic installations. Back to top

Variable Speed Motor

A motor that automatically adjusts the flow of warm or cool air for ultimate comfort.

A system that exchanges stale, recirculated indoor air with fresh, filtered outside air.


A method of partitioning a home into independently controlled comfort zones for enhanced comfort and efficiency.