It’s about time to schedule fall preventive maintenance, which means you need to know about communicating with your HVAC tech. Because of industry jargon, it may feel as though the technician is speaking a whole different language. Here are some common furnace terms to become familiar with so communicating with your HVAC tech is easier this year.

  • AFUE: Annual fuel utilization efficiency, a rating given to furnaces that indicates how efficiently they perform. The closer the AFUE rating is to 100 percent, the more fuel is converted to useful heat for your home.
  • Heat exchanger: This is the place where heat is transferred to the surrounding air and then pumped throughout the home. Carbon monoxide, a by-product of the combustion process, is trapped within the heat exchanger.
  • Red-tagged furnace: When the heat exchanger has a crack, it can leak carbon monoxide into the air you breathe. This is very dangerous and can even be fatal. A furnace is red-tagged and not permitted to operate if the heat exchanger develops a crack.
  • Horizontal flow: This is when a furnace is installed on its side so air enters one end and exits at the other. This installation method is often used in attic and crawl space installations.
  • Upflow: This is when a furnace is installed upright so air enters through the side or bottom and exits at the top. It applies to basement, closet and attic installations.
  • Two-speed operation: Some furnaces have this feature for greater temperature control and energy efficiency. It allows the unit to run on high or low speeds, based on the current need.
  • MERV rating: Minimum efficiency reporting value is a rating given to air filters based on their ability to trap minuscule particles. A higher MERV rating indicates smaller holes in the filter and greater efficiency. The MERV scale ranges from 1 to 20, but MERV 7 or 8 filters are typically the highest you want to use for residential applications.

For more information about communicating with your HVAC tech, please contact Fred’s Heating and Air at our Omaha location today. Our experience dates back to 1987.