HVAC is a term you are likely to come across if you are working in construction or building maintenance.

But what exactly are HVAC systems and what should you know about them?

This article delves into everything you need to know about HVAC systems, how they work and tips for getting the best results when installing and using them.

If you need help with anything related to HVAC or building maintenance, simply get in touch with us here at Therma-Mech. We provide mechanical and electrical services on projects across the UK.

What are HVAC Systems?

HVAC stands for “heating, ventilating, and air conditioning.” A HVAC system may do all these tasks or primarily focus on doing one of them. These systems are designed to create optimal indoor temperature and improved air quality, creating environments that are comfortable to work, live, and play in. Installing and maintaining these systems is vital for buildings to be safe and energy efficient.

From domestic HVAC systems to large commercial grade HVAC systems, and everything in between, they come with varying features and functionality, so you can find one most suitable for your specific requirements.

The best HVAC systems are easy to control, offer high-quality air flow and provide building heating and cooling that meets resident needs.

One of the main reasons why HVAC systems are so important, particularly for building managers, is that heating/cooling costs are likely to be one of the biggest ongoing costs for any building. This means having inefficient systems that are wasting energy, or alternatively, having complex features that are unnecessary can mean buildings aren’t optimised for what they need.

How do HVAC Systems Work?

Each type of HVAC system works slightly differently, all having their own unique benefits. Nevertheless, they all tend to operate on the scientific principle of compression. As fluid is compressed it will release heat, and when it expands, it will absorb heat. By incorporating this methodology into mechanical equipment and systems, HVAC systems can effectively heat and cool a building.

Water is heated or chilled and distributed appropriately to change the internal temperature of a room/building.

To make the most out of HVAC systems, they must be designed effectively, taking into account the layout and functionality of the building. It is a specialist task requiring experienced engineers that can design systems that are engrained into the core functionality of a building.

Types of HVAC Systems

There are different types of HVAC available. Depending on the specific circumstances, one system will be better suited to your requirements (whether that’s based on price, building type or functionality).

HVAC systems can be centralised or localised to a specific room, or a combination of the both.


Heat pump systems are ideal for those looking primarily for heating from their HVAC systems as they are more efficient that other heating types.

Heat pumps work by drawing air in, heating it up and pumping it around a room or building. They can also work in reverse and cool a room or building down too.

PRU (Packaged Rooftop Unit)/Air Handlers

PRU are large units (that often sit on top of a building) and are designed for heating/cooling a large space.

These systems will connect to the building systems (such as ductwork) to distribute heat around the building.


This is predominantly targeted towards the consumer market and is usually recommended for heating/cooling a few rooms.

As the name suggests, it doesn’t require ducts (which are usually incorporated into HAVC systems for commercial/high rise buildings).

Split System

Split systems include elements of the HVAC system separated and “split” into different areas.

Benefits of Installing a HVAC System

Investing in a quality HVAC system offers a range of benefits, including:

  • Efficiency – HVAC systems are inherently more energy efficient than their predecessors. This means they use less energy which is great for the environment and great for your finances.
  • Better Air Quality – Although HVAC are most often associated with heating and cooling, their ability to ventilate and control air quality is a huge benefit. This can ensure the air is free from pollutants, helping it feel fresher and avoid buildings feeling stuffy with “stale air.” Improving air quality and maintaining a high standard helps create buildings that are enjoyable to be in and feel healthy.
  • Better Humidity Control – HVAC also help with the regulation of moisture and humidity in the air flow. This can be a top priority in certain environments/climates that experience high humidity and moisture content in the air. High humidity can cause issues for building maintenance so regulating this is really important for building longevity.
  • Control – Modern HVAC systems give building managers much better control over heating, cooling and ventilation. This means any potential issues or changes can be quick to sort out.

Learn More with Therma-Mech

HVAC systems are a key element of a building’s composition. They offer a plethora of benefits and can help create safe and efficient buildings. Nevertheless, they need expert installation and design, to ensure they deliver exceptional results for a building.

This means getting accredited experts to design and install any HVAC systems will mean there are no nasty surprises.

Here at Therma-Mech, we provide mechanical and electrical services on projects across the UK, specialising in District Heating, and regularly working in the Education, Residential, Commercial and Retail sectors.

Alongside building heating and cooling, our expert team can help facilitate ductwork, above and below ground installation, energy centre, office refurbishments, and building management systems.

We proudly fulfil the criteria to work for national companies on major projects, thanks to our range of accreditations that are rare to find, such as CHAS, BESA and SMAS.

To learn more about our team, our approach and all our services, simply get in touch today