Do Home HVAC Systems Use Outside Air?

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How HVAC Systems Work?

In many HVAC systems, there’s a common misconception that the large outdoor unit is responsible for bringing fresh air from the outside into the house. However, the reality is different. Let’s delve into how HVAC systems work and their relationship with outdoor air:

Home HVAC Systems use outside air

Producing Cool Air

1. Absorption: The compressor absorbs warm air inside the house.

2. Cooling: The warm air is cooled by a refrigerant, which is then circulated outside.

3. Evaporation: The refrigerant passes to the evaporator, becomes very cold, and is distributed indoors.

4. Air Circulation: Fans distribute the cool air throughout the house.

Producing Warm Air

The procedure of an HVAC system to heating a house is typically much simpler than cooling it. A furnace inside the system has burners that make combustion gases that exit via the heat exchanger. As it exits the heat exchanger, a fan blows air over these hot gases and distributes them via ducts in the house.

Reasons for Bringing Fresh Air Inside
Architectural Defects
Extra Ventilation
Dedicated Outdoor Air Systems (DOAS)
Separate Systems with Separate Ductwork
Combined System
Bringing Fresh Air Inside with good HVAC installation

While standard HVAC systems don’t actively draw fresh air from the outside, factors like architectural defects, extra ventilation, and specialized DOAS systems can introduce outdoor air. Understanding these dynamics helps in optimizing indoor air quality and system efficiency.

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