How Does an Air Conditioner Work?

The weather is reaching record highs throughout the country and many homes are utilizing some kind of air conditioner to beat the seasonal heat. While we are all grateful that your air conditioner runs, the team at Symbiont Service Corp in Englewood thought they would give you a glance at how an air conditioner operates.

The Basics

There’s a plethora of science involved in keeping your home cooler. Your air conditioner functions in a comparable way to your refrigerator, but your air conditioner has a more difficult responsibility to handle. Both your fridge and AC cool with a constant loop of refrigerant, however with the air conditioner this refrigerant loops from inside to outside your home. This refrigerant effortlessly converts from a liquid to gas and back to a liquid again. It enters your house as a sub-cooled liquid and as it evaporates it soaks in heat from the indoors and reverts back into vapor. This vapor then travels back to your outdoor unit where the heat is freed and is then condensed back into a sub-cooled liquid.

Four Components

There are 4 central components to your air conditioner unit: a compressor, an evaporator coil, the condensing coil and an expansion valve.

The evaporator coil is the location your refrigerant evaporates from a sub-cooled liquid into a super-heated vapor. This component can be found indoors, in your garage or sometimes in your attic. Warm air moves throughout the cold evaporator coil and the heat is removed from the air. This cooled air is then transferred throughout the space inside your home.

Your compressor is located in your outdoor condensing unit. The super-heated vapor from your evaporator coil enters into the compressor which surges the pressure of the vapor until it is converted into hot, high pressure vapor. The hot vapor then goes back into the condenser coil where less hot outdoor air flows across the coil, heat is pushed outdoors and the refrigerant is converted back into a sub-cooled liquid. The sub-cooled liquid returns to the indoor evaporator coil through an expansion valve or metering device. This continues repeatedly throughout the process.

That accomplishes your physics lesson for now…your air conditioner runs on an never-ending loop of science. We understand that it’s not as crucial to you how it works, but just the fact it’s running. If you’d like to chat about staying cool and comfortable in Englewood contact us at 941-306-4161. With the help of our team and science we’re going to make it through this sweltering summer.

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