Are HVAC and A/C Synonymous? 

Are HVAC and A/C Synonymous? 

Are HVAC and A/C Synonymous? When it comes to HVAC terms, you’ve probably heard some used interchangeably, so it may seem that they’re synonymous. Two such terms are “HVAC” and “A/C,” and learning their exact meanings can help you better understand the particular equipment in your home comfort system, and how you can keep everything operating reliably and efficiently with regular preventive care.

What HVAC Means

The term “HVAC” is an acronym for heating, ventilation and air conditioning, and it’s usually used to describe the entire comfort system in a home. Depending on your home and needs, your heating and air conditioning equipment might include a gas-fired furnace, electrically-powered split-system air conditioner or heat pump, a mini-split, or a geothermal heat pump. The ventilation portion of the system typically refers to the air circulation components including the blower unit, air filter, and ducting, but it might also cover a whole-house ventilator, or add-on air purification or filtration unit.

A/C Definition

A/C most often means “air conditioning,” but it can also refer to any of the different types of household cooling equipment, including central split system heat pumps and air conditioners, ductless mini units, geothermal systems, and window units.

Preventive Maintenance for Your Equipment

To keep your comfort system operating at peak performance, all the shared components should have a semi-annual inspection, cleaning and tuneup by a trained and experienced HVAC technician.


Here’s a general overview of some of the key maintenance steps taken for specific portions of an HVAC system:

  • Cooling: For optimal comfort and efficiency, a technician should perform spring maintenance that includes verifying the refrigerant level, cleaning the condenser and evaporator coils, and flushing the condensate drain.
  • Heating: In the fall, heating equipment service should include inspecting the exhaust/vent system, testing/cleaning the gas burner and assessing the heat exchanger.
  • Ventilation: To ensure that the air distribution components are working properly, the blower assembly should be cleaned and lubricated, the ductwork inspected, and a new air filter installed.

For more help understanding HVAC terms, or to schedule expert maintenance for the HVAC system in your Peachtree City home, contact us at Powers Heating & Air.


Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas 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 770-487-2040.

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