The summer season has arrived with record highs across the country, and with many houses having some type of air conditioner, it’s the best way to escape the sun. As you are relaxing in your comfortably cool home or office, grateful that your air conditioner works, let’s gain some insight at how a typical cooling system functions.
Your air conditioner operates the same way as your refrigerator, but obviously instead of keeping a single space cool, it has to cool your entire home. Both use a refrigerant that changes simply from liquid to gas, back to liquid again. In your air conditioner, the refrigerant is on a constant ring from the outdoors to the interior of your house. It goes into the home as a sub-cooled liquid that evaporates and collects or absorbs heat from the air in your home, expands back into vapor, then returns to the outside condensing unit where it dissipates the heat and is changed back to a sub-cooled liquid.
Your AC system is built of four main components: an evaporator coil, a compressor, a condensing coil, and an expansion valve or metering device.
The piece where your refrigerant evaporates from a sub-cooled liquid to a super-heated vapor is called the evaporator coil, which may be inside, in your attic, or in your garage. As warm indoor air is carried throughout the cold evaporator coil, heat is removed from the air…and the colder air is pushed throughout your indoor space.
From the evaporator coil, the now super-heated vapor refrigerant returns to the compressor stationed in your outside condensing unit. The compressor raises the pressure of the vapor until it shifts into a hot, high pressure vapor. The now super-hot vapor goes into the condenser coil where less hot air blows past the coil, eliminating the heat to the outdoors, and returns the refrigerant to a sub-cooled liquid. The sub-cooled liquid refrigerant is returned to the indoor evaporator coil where, through an expansion valve or metering device, the process is redone.
Your AC system is a constant loop of movement. We know the important thing to you isn’t really how it works, but that it’s functioning correctly. If you’d like to know the inner workings or just about keeping cool, give our professionals a call at 727-369-6195. We will team up with you and the laws of physics to keep you cool this time around.