Maintaining the ideal temperature inside the building during the summer and winter months is essential. Here we have discussed two types of heating and cooling systems commonly used in buildings for superior insulation against the outside air.
Advantages of using HVAC System Inside the Building
HVAC stands for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. The goal of the HVAC system is to provide thermal comfort inside the building by controlling the temperature and humidity. They have been listed here.
- HVAC system heats the building by adding thermal energy to the indoor air.
- HVAC system cools the building by removing thermal energy from the indoor air.
- HVAC system cleans the indoor air by eliminating smoke, dust, pollen and other pollutants.
- HVAC system removes water vapor from the indoor atmosphere. It can also increase the humidity of the indoor atmosphere by adding water vapor.
- HVAC system provides ventilation by exchanging fresh air from the outside atmosphere.
- HVAC system controls air movement inside the building.
The Various Components of an HVAC System have been discussed here
- Furnace- Furnace is a component of the HVAC heating and cooling system which uses gas, oil or electricity to generate heat energy. The heat energy increases the temperature of the air passing through the system. This warm air is then supplied to the rooms through ducts. The furnace is usually placed in the basement of the building. PVC pipes are used to release the exhaust fumes to the outside atmosphere. The efficiency of a furnace in modern HVAC systems can be as high as 98%.
- Evaporator coil- Evaporator coil is an integral part of the HVAC system which ensures that the system blows cool air. The evaporator coil becomes cold due to the cold refrigerant coming in from the outdoor unit. The warm air from the room is passed over the coil by the blower fan. The refrigerant removes heat from the space and the coil absorbs moisture. The air becomes cooler and drier which then passed to the ducts.
- Heat exchanger- Heat exchanger heats up when the furnace generates heat energy. The heat is then transferred through the passing air. Furnace always has a heat exchanger made of steel.
- Condensing unit- This is an outdoor unit which contains a compressor to increase the temperature and pressure of the hot refrigerant gas coming from the evaporator coil. The condenser coils then removes the heat from the air by transferring it to the outside air. The cooled refrigerator gas is again transformed into liquid.
- Ducts- The ducts are concealed in the walls, and ceilings of the house. The ducts, made of fiberglass, sheet metal or flexduct, distribute warm or cool air through the building.
- Vents- Vents are the points through which either warm or cool air passes into the rooms or the indoor air is drawn back into the system for re-heating or re-cooling. The vents are installed either high up on walls and ceilings or on the edges of floors.
- Thermostat-The HVAC system is controlled by a thermostat. The temperature is set with the help of the thermostat.
Radiant Heating and Cooling System
Radiant systems heat or cool the surfaces in the rooms instead of the air. The heat is distributed through radiation in case of heating system and cold air is distributed through convection in case of cooling systems.
Radiant heating uses hot water circulating in a series of pipes embedded into the concrete to heat the floor. The heated floor radiates heat to the surroundings. This is also called hydronic heating. Electrical wires can also be used instead of hot water pipes in radiant heating systems.
Radiant cooling systems utilize cold ceiling beams and panels for cooling the rooms. The cool air from the ceiling comes is distributed throughout the room due to convection.