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How Do HVAC Model Numbers Work?

02/28/2024

There are common patterns for HVAC model numbers. So although the specific format and meaning of your HVAC model numbers can vary between manufacturers, knowing a few key rules will typically tell you all you need to know about your equipment to find the right repair parts. Along the way, Surplus City is here to help!
 

Decoding the Different HVAC Model Numbers

HVAC model numbers tend to follow a standardized format set by the manufacturer, and there are some common elements and patterns that you’ll see across most HVAC model numbers. The general breakdown starts with the “brand identifier.” The first few letters or numbers will usually relate to the specific heating and cooling manufacturer. For example, Carrier might use “CA” or “C” and Trane might use “T” to start.

The entire model number is typically made up of 11 different characters. After the brand identifier, there will usually be a series of numbers or letters to indicate the type of product. This could be a letter for the type of equipment, such as an “F” for furnace or “AC” for air conditioner. Or it might be a combination of numbers and letters put together to represent the product line or model series.

Following that, the next set of numbers often relates to the capacity or size of the unit. This could represent the cooling capacity in BTUs (British Thermal Units) for an air conditioner or heat pump. It can also relate to the heating capacity in BTUs or AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) for a furnace. Sometimes this part of the model number might also indicate tonnage for air conditioners and heat pumps.

Each HVAC manufacturer follows distinct guidelines for their serial numbers, so there might even be additional letters or numbers in the model number to note specific features, design revisions, or other unique characteristics. You can always research the model number online to help you decipher the code. But it’s also nice to know these tricks to be able to read different model numbers on your own!
 

Model Numbers for Your HVAC Replacement Parts

HVAC systems can vary widely in terms of size, capacity, features, and design. The model number helps ensure that the replacement part you select is compatible with your specific unit. In most cases, having the equipment model number is extremely helpful and often necessary to find the right replacement parts for HVAC equipment. Understanding how the model number shares important information about the system specifications, dimensions, and components can give you a great leg up for identifying compatible replacement parts.

Many HVAC manufacturers produce a range of equipment models with different configurations and components. The model number helps identify the exact part needed for your specific model,

Whether you’re looking at a compressor, fan motor, control board, or other component, being able to reference the HVAC equipment model number can help you identify the exact part you’re wanting to replace. You don’t want to accidently use an incompatible part. Those types of mistakes can lead to performance issues and decreased efficiency. You can even potentially damage the system. But with the correct replacement parts—specified by your system model—your HVAC equipment can get back to running as efficiently as possible.
 

Find What You Need at Surplus City HVAC & Supplies

Deciphering model numbers can seem confusing at first, but with a little research and a general understanding of what each group of numbers and letters might mean, you can start finding the parts you need to find your replacement parts. Along the way, be sure you’re shopping at the right place to save. That’s our goal here at Surplus City HVAC & Supplies. We're here to help you keep more money in your pocket.

Our extensive inventory includes brand-new HVAC parts from all of the leading manufacturers, and our industry partnerships ensure that we can price our parts for less. What’s more, when you shop with us, you’re not only saving money, you’re also avoiding the hassle of backorders and delayed shipping. Everything you see online is ready to go out the door. Let us help you get the job done right and wrapped up fast!