Which HVAC Parts to Know

Which HVAC Parts to KnowQuick, how many HVAC parts can you name? For many people, the list begins and ends with “thermostat.” It’s perfectly appropriate that this familiar device prominently displayed on the wall might be the best-known system component. However, once in a while it may be helpful to know some of the other constituents of your cooling and heating system. For example: if problems occur and professional repairs are needed, or when you’re shopping for a new unit.

Here are some of the major HVAC parts that work together to keep you comfortable in all seasons.

A/C Coils

Refrigerant circulating through the indoor evaporator coil absorbs heat inside your house and carries it to the outdoor condenser coil where it’s released into outdoor air. Coil cleaning as part of scheduled annual preventive maintenance is critical to optimize system efficiency and performance.


Household ductwork, usually routed through the attic and inside walls, actually comprises two separate systems. Supply ducts distribute cooled or heated air from the blower to supply vents in rooms throughout the house. The return ductwork removes air from those rooms and conveys it back to the air conditioner or furnace. Leaky ducts are a frequent cause of poor cooling/heating results and increased operating costs.


Installed in the outdoor condenser unit of your central A/C, the compressor’s the single most costly component in the cooling system. Utilizing a powerful motor, it compresses the refrigerant flow to concentrate heat extracted inside the house so it can be effectively dispersed from the condenser coil.

Heat Exchanger

This vital part transfers heat generated by the gas burner in the combustion chamber to household airflow passing through the furnace. It also fulfills a critical safety function by preventing combustion byproducts including deadly carbon monoxide from entering the house. Regulations in many locales require that a furnace with a cracked or rusted heat exchanger must be shut down until repairs or replacement is made.

For professional maintenance and repair of all HVAC parts in your home, contact Paitson Bros., now serving the Wabash Valley for over 95 years.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Terre Haute, Indiana about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 812-645-6859.

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