The temperatures are reaching record numbers throughout the country and most homes are running some kind of air conditioner to battle the summer heat. While we are all thankful that your air conditioner is functioning, the experts at Lakeside Heating & Air in Chelan and Wenatchee would like to inform you how it works.
There’s plenty of science behind keeping your house cooler. Your air conditioner functions in a similar way to your refrigerator, but your cooling system has a bigger task to manage. Both your fridge and AC cool with a consistent 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 flows into your house as a sub-cooled liquid and as it evaporates it takes in heat from the indoors and turns back into vapor. This vapor then transfers back to your outdoor unit where the heat is released and is then condensed back into a sub-cooled liquid.
There are 4 central sections to your air conditioner
unit: a compressor, an evaporator coil, the condensing coil and an expansion valve.
The evaporator coil is where your refrigerant evaporates from a sub-cooled liquid into a super-heated vapor. This component can be located in the home, in your garage or sometimes in your attic. Warm air transports throughout the cold evaporator coil and the heat is removed from the air. This cooled air is then transferred throughout your indoor space.
Your compressor sits in your outdoor condensing unit. The super-heated vapor from your evaporator coil goes into the compressor which surges the pressure of the vapor until it is changed into hot, high pressure vapor. The hot vapor then goes back into the condenser coil where less hot outdoor air moves across the coil, heat is pushed outdoors and the refrigerant is converted back into a sub-cooled liquid. This sub-cooled liquid is then returned to the indoor evaporator coil by an expansion valve or metering device. The process is then repeated.
That accomplishes your physics lesson of the day…your air conditioner functions on an relentless loop of science. We understand that it’s not as important to you how it works, but that you are staying cool. If you’d like to talk about staying cool and comfortable in Chelan and Wenatchee give us a call at 509-284-4265. With the help of our team and science we’re going to make it through this sweltering summer.