An air conditioner is a system that treats air in a defined, usually enclosed area via a refrigeration cycle in which warm air is removed and replaced with cooler and more humid air.
Air conditioners use refrigerants that easily convert from a gas to a liquid and back again. This refrigerant is used to transfer heat from the air inside of a home to the outside air.
The air conditioning equipment has three main parts. They are a compressor, a condenser and an evaporator. The compressor and condenser are usually located on the outside air portion of the air conditioner. The evaporator is located on the inside the house, sometimes as part of a furnace.
In a split system, the compressor condenses and circulates the refrigerant through the outdoor unit, changing it from a gas to a liquid. The liquid is then forced through the indoor evaporator coil or cooling compartment. The indoor unit’s fan circulates the inside air to pass across the evaporator fins. The evaporator’s metal fins exchange the thermal energy with the air around it. There, the refrigerant turns from liquid into vapor, removing any heat from the surrounding air. As the heat is removed from the air, the air is cooled and blown back into the house.
From that point, the condenser or outdoor unit then turns the refrigerant vapor back into a liquid, removing any heat. By the time the fluid leaves the evaporator again, it is a cool, low-pressure gas, eventually returning to the condenser to begin its trip all over again. This process continues again and again until your home reaches the cooling temperature you want, as programmed and sensed by your thermostat setting.
Like any heating or cooling system, proper AC maintenance is the key to efficient operation. A BHMS “Nate Certified” Comfort Specialist will perform a preventive maintenance inspection on your AC system to ensure a seamless operation.