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How Does an HVAC Work?

by | Feb 22, 2021

Powering through scorching summer or biting cold winter days, your HVAC (heating, ventilation, & air conditioning) works hard to keep you comfortable. How does it actually accomplish this seemingly impossible task? Let’s find out!

Air Conditioning

Even though it seems like it, air conditioners don’t work with magic. When it kicks on, warmer air is pulled through the grill (where the filter is) & drawn to the evaporator coils where heat is absorbed. The cooler air is then pushed back into the home through the fan. At the same time, the refrigerant temperature causes it to shift from a liquid to gas & allows it to transfer heat outside. As it returns, coolant goes through the compressor unit & condenser pipes changing it back to a liquid ready to once again absorb heat.


Is heating the same as the air conditioning? Not quite. Instead of bringing heat from outside, the furnace uses a burner to raise the temperature of the heat exchanger. Air is warmed as it’s blown across the exchanger & is then pushed through by an electrically powered fan, the blower.

Notable Mentions

While the HVAC does the heavy lifting, other parts of the system work as part of the whole to keep you comfortable. The brain is the thermostat. It reads varying temperatures & tells the system when to turn on or shut off. Ducts act as the means to evenly carry the air to different parts of the home. Insulation creates a boundary between outside and inside, making it easier for the indoor air temperature to remain stable.