Breaking Down HVAC Jargon

Have you heard your HVAC technician in Houston, Texas, use terms you don’t understand? There are a lot of HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) jargon and industry-specific words that sound foreign to the everyday customer. Read on as we will break down eight HVAC industry terms for you.


CFM stands for cubic feet per minute, which is a standard measurement of airflow. Typically, 400 CFM per ton of air conditioning is produced by an air conditioning system.

Checking the Charge

When your HVAC technician puts his or her gauge on the air conditioning unit, he or she is measuring how much refrigerant is in the unit to make sure it is the correct amount.


The EER, or Energy Efficient Ratio, is used to calculate the efficiency of your ground source heat pump or window unit air conditioner. This ratio is between the cooling capacity and the power input. The higher the ratio, the more efficient the air conditioner.

HEPA Filter

A High Efficiency Particulate Absorbing filter used in an air purifier removes traps particles from the air as it flows through.


HSPF stands for the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor. This is the efficiency of the heating mode over the entire heating season. A high number indicates an efficient unit.


MERV stands for the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. The filters used in HVAC systems are rated according to this value. The higher the rating, the more pollutants the filter catches.


NATE stands for North American Technician Excellence. This national certification program is the only one recognized by the entire industry for home heating and cooling technicians.


SEET, or a Seasonal Extreme Environmental Test, is the American standard of testing, usually in a facility where testing of new heating and air conditioning systems takes place to ensure their reliability.

We have covered just a few HVAC acronyms and industry-specific words in this article. The next time you call one of our technicians from Davis Air Conditioning & Heating Inc. to your home, be sure to ask him or her to explain any acronyms that may be used. Contact us at 888-710-5530.

Image provided by Shutterstock

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