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C

Cooling Load

Heat that flows into a space from outdoors and/or indoors.

Cooling Capacity

The measure of a unit’s ability to remove heat from an enclosed space. The COP, or Coefficient of Performance, of a heat pump measures the ratio of the rate of useful heat output that the pump delivers (excluding supplementary heating) to the corresponding rate of energy input.

Condensing Unit

Part of a refrigerating mechanism that pumps in vaporized refrigerant from the evaporator, compresses it, liquefies it in the condenser and returns it.

Condenser Coil

A series or network of refrigerant tubes typically placed outside a home or business that removes heat from the hot, gaseous refrigerant and re-liquefies it.

Compressor

Known as “the heart of the system” because it circulates the refrigerant through the loop, the compressor moves the refrigerant from the indoor evaporator to the outdoor condenser, then back to the evaporator.

Capacity

The ability of a heating or cooling system to function in a given amount of space. Heating = BTUs. Cooling = tons.

Central Air Conditioner System

A system that treats air at a central location and carries it to and from rooms by one or more fans and a system of ducts.

Closed-loop Heat-pump System

A heat-pump system that uses a loop of buried plastic pipe as a heat exchanger. Loops can be horizontal or vertical.