Air conditioners do not “generate” cold air in the same way that a furnace does. Instead, they employ refrigerant, also known as coolant, to collect heat from the air, transport it outside, and release it back into the atmosphere. The refrigerant flows constantly, removing more and more heat from your house until the temperature in your home matches the setting on your thermostat. The evaporator system and condenser system coils are responsible for distinct aspects of the cooling process. Let’s start with the evaporator coil.
What is an Evaporator Coil?
The evaporator coil, also known as the evaporator core, is the component of an air conditioner’s system that absorbs heat from the refrigerant. It is from this place that the chilly air originates.
The evaporator coil is situated within or near the blower fan on the air handler. Because the metals such as copper, steel, or aluminum conduct heat well hence evaporator coils are built of these metals. Tubes bent into U-shapes and installed in panels make up the majority of home AC evaporators.
In most cases, the panels are arranged in an “A” shape. To optimize the impact of the refrigerant, these panels are coated with thin metal fins that bring the passing air to be cooled closer to the coils.
The compressor pushes cold, low-pressure liquid refrigerant through the tubing in the evaporator coil when the air conditioner is turned on. The refrigerant flows via an expansion valve before reaching the evaporator coil. This valve allows the liquid refrigerant to cool more quickly by releasing pressure. Because the liquid refrigerant exiting the expansion valve is cold, it may absorb heat from the air.
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In addition, the expansion valve regulates the amount of refrigerant that goes to the evaporator. Advanced expansion valves, such as thermostatic expansion valves (TXVs), may fine-tune the flow to enhance the overall energy efficiency of the system.
The blower fan pulls heated room air over the evaporator coil as the refrigerant passes through it. The refrigerant absorbs heat from the air passing through, warming up and evaporating in the process.
When the water vapor in your warm home air meets the cool evaporator coils, it condenses into liquid and drops into the condensate pan, which drains the water away to the outside. The humidity in your home is reduced by your evaporator coil in this way.
What is an Air Conditioner Condenser?
Since the evaporator and condenser coils operate together to cool your home, the evaporator coil would be useless without a condenser coil to finish the cooling cycle.
The condenser of your air conditioner is housed in the huge, square unit outside your home. The condenser tubes and fins, the compressor, a fan, and copper tubing, as well as valves and switches, make up the “condenser unit.”
After absorbing heat from your home’s air, the refrigerant goes outside via a copper tube to the condenser unit. The warm, low-pressure refrigerant gas enters the compressor here. The compressor turns the refrigerant into a heated, high-pressure gas by compressing it.
This gas goes out of the compressor and into the condenser coils. This is where the refrigerant releases the majority of the heat that your home has absorbed. The outside unit’s fan blows air over the condenser coils, causing the refrigerant to lose heat.
Because of the numerous coils in the condenser, the refrigerant spends more time in the direction of blowing air, giving it plenty of opportunities to release the heat that was transported out of your home.
The refrigerant transitions from a heated gas to a hot liquid as it cools. It then returns to your house via a copper line and the expansion valve in the interior unit near the evaporator coil.
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