Confused about what goes into heating and cooling your office space? Don’t worry. Before starting your next project or buying new HVAC equipment, get up to speed on what you need to know to make the best choice for your company.

What Is an HVAC System?

As a business owner, you’ve probably heard of air conditioning, but you may not be familiar with the acronym HVAC. HVAC is a broad term standing for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. These systems are responsible for heating and cooling your business, including products like:

  • Furnaces
  • Air conditioners
  • Heat pumps
  • Ductwork
  • Thermostats
  • Comfort controls

Differences Between HVAC and Air Conditioning

HVAC systems heat and cool your office space while providing ventilation that maintains your indoor air quality.

Air conditioning mainly refers to systems that only cool your workplace without ventilating air. While all HVAC equipment provides air conditioning, not all air conditioners offer heating and ventilation functions.

Essentially, HVAC systems deliver the added bonus of removing pollutants, dust, and allergens from your air to create a comfortable working environment.

Types of HVAC Units

Because HVAC equipment varies, understanding the purpose and functionality of different systems helps you decide which type of unit is right for your business.

Here are some standard types of HVAC equipment:

Split System Air Conditioner

A split system has indoor and outdoor units connected through copper tubing.

The split system model holds condensers and compressors outside your facility. Inside your building, a separate unit contains your evaporator coils and air handlers. These units work together to send cool air through your duct system.

Traditionally, older split systems are gas powered, but some newer models can switch between electric and gas power. These are called hybrid split systems, and they function similar to standard split systems but use less energy. They’re a popular addition for commercial business owners since they minimize energy use and reduce utility bills.

Rooftop AC Unit

Rooftop AC units are self-contained systems usually installed on the roof of commercial buildings.

Similar to other types of other HVAC equipment, the purpose of a rooftop unit is to distribute air to specific areas of your building. Rooftop AC units are directly connected to your building’s ductwork, providing a defined route for air to travel.

Most units use a refrigeration system to provide cooling. Unlike split systems, your controls, compressors, condensers, and fans are located in one spot on the back of the unit.

Some systems are programmed to recirculate internal air through return ductwork. This allows businesses to reduce their energy usage, especially during winter.

Water Source Heat Pump

Compared to traditional HVAC equipment that requires each air handling system to have separate condensing units, a water source heat pump (WSHP) conducts heat exchange with a single evaporative cooling tower.

By regulating temperature through your water pipe systems, WSHP’s extract thermal energy from your water loop, compression units, and refrigerant circuits.

Due to how they can capture heat from an existing energy source, these systems provide four to six units of heating for every unit of energy consumed, making them one of the most energy efficient types of HVAC equipment on the market.

How Long Does HVAC Equipment Last?

The lifespan of your HVAC equipment is affected by a few external factors, but typically last anywhere from 10-15 years. This timeframe can be extended or shortened depending on:

  • Usage
  • Climate
  • Maintenance

Companies near Delaware’s coastline tend to experience shorter lifespans as salt exposure increases the corrosion rate on system parts.

Improper usage also affects the longevity of your HVAC equipment. Undersized systems need to work harder to cool your facility, placing additional stress on individual parts and reducing its life. Oversizing your HVAC equipment causes your system to turn too quickly, leading to motor failure.

As a business owner, taking the proper precautions can improve the longevity of your system.

Investing in regular preventative maintenance is an effective way to minimize potential problems and extend the service life of your systems. Your local technicians can conduct tune-ups and replace damaged parts to mediate wear-and-tear on your systems.

See HVAC Savings With Service Unlimited

Are you looking to reduce your energy usage with new HVAC equipment? Has it been a while since you last had preventive maintenance on current systems?

For over 60 years, Service Unlimited has helped businesses in Delaware improve HVAC operating efficiency while extending the lifespan of their equipment. Discover why companies choose SUI for their HVAC needs.

Ready to take the next step? Reach out to our experts and schedule a free consultation.