Understanding Your Air Conditioner
Although split system and ducted air conditioners are the most popular, there are many types of air conditioners and systems available on the market. While it is difficult to decide which one to choose there are several things they all have in common:
- They are designed to cooldown or heat the air in the room
- They can improve the air quality
- They require regular maintenance
In order to perform their tasks, every air conditioning system has five essential parts. For your aircon to work on an optimum level, you have to understand how every component works and how to maintain it.
A thermostat enables you to set the temperature manually or automatically, depending on the device. The thermostat is a sensor. You set a desired temperature of the room, and it is constantly checking the temperature of the air until the desired temperature is reached. The thermostat then sends the signal to the device to stop working. Once the temperature rises again, the air conditioner will continue cooling down the air.
The compressor is one of the most important parts of every air conditioner. It turns slow-pressure gas into a high-pressure state for the condenser to work. The condenser – supported by the compressor, condenses gas to liquid.
Air conditioner collects hot air from the room, turns it into liquid thanks to compressor and condenser, cools it down, and dispenses it through the room. The process is similar to the one that occurs in the refrigerator but in a much bigger space. When the refrigerant absorbs hot air, it enters the compressor which then squeezes the gas molecules tight together. When the pressure of the gas reaches a certain level, it also becomes hot. It then goes into the condenser where it gets cooled down.
The expansion valve is located between the evaporator and the condenser coils. It lowers the pressure of the refrigerant so expansion in the evaporator can occur. There are two types of expansion valves used in air conditioners:
- Internally-equalized valve
- Externally-equalized valve
The first one is the most commonly used.
As we already mentioned, the low-pressure refrigerant enters the compressor in a gas state. The compressor then increases the pressure and the temperature of the gas which then goes to the condenser. It cools down the gas and turns it into liquid. The liquid then enters the expansion valve which allows one part of the refrigerant to enter the evaporator.
The evaporator is linked to the condenser. By decreasing the pressure, cooled down liquid is turned into a gas which cools off the hot air and emits it back into the room. The refrigerant then goes back to the compressor and condenser, and the entire cycle repeats until the desired temperature is reached. If you have a split system air conditioner, the evaporator is located in the indoor unit, and it represents the last step of the cooling process. The component that blows the cool air is called the fan.
Filters are also located in the indoor unit of your air conditioner. These remove the dust particles that circulate through the air which might be harmful to your health. If the filters are dirty, they will not be able to filter the air. The result will be high levels of dust, allergens, and other pollutants in the air. This may cause asthma attacks, trigger your allergies, or can result in respiratory infections. Therefore, maintaining the filters according to the manufacturer’s recommendation is a must.
The Bottom Line
No matter which air conditioner you choose to purchase, they are all designed to cool off or heat the air in the room. In order for the device to operate at an optimum level, all components have to work properly. Each part is integral and should be maintained regularly. Feel free to contact Airrite mechanical professionals who can help service or install a residential, commercial or industrial air conditioner.