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How Do Central Air Conditioners Work?

Your central air conditioner is a complex system of parts that all need to work together to cool your home efficiently. Understanding how these components function will make it easier for you to stay on top of repairs and spot issues when they develop. Here, we’ll discuss how a central air conditioner transfers heat, the system’s main parts, and how they work together to keep a property cool.

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How AC Systems Transfer Heat

Every central air conditioner transfers heat from one space to another. These systems pull heat energy out of the air in a home and send it outside, leaving only cooler air inside. The air conditioner then circulates this cooler air throughout the home. To perform these tasks, an air conditioner needs a variety of components to work together simultaneously.

Understanding the Main Components of Your Air Conditioner 

Let’s take a look at the various parts of an air conditioner and how they contribute to the cooling process:

The Compressor 

The compressor receives refrigerant from the air conditioner in the form of gas. The gas is then compressed, which increases its temperature and pressure. Finally, the gas leaves the compressor, expelling heat energy into the condenser.

The Condenser 

The condenser is typically the AC unit outside of the home. It receives the heated gas from the compressor and uses a fan to blow cooler air over the condenser coil. This turns the gas into a liquid and prepares it to return to the home.

The Metering Device

Upon entering the home again, the liquid gas enters a metering device. This component lowers its pressure and controls the gas flow to the evaporator.

The Evaporator

Once all the liquid gas has entered the evaporator, it’s heated again by heat energy from within the home. This turns the gas back into a vapor and leaves the evaporator coil cold. Finally, the refrigerant gas is delivered back to the compressor to begin the cycle again.

The Air Handler

Now that the evaporator coil is cold, the air handler can blow hot air over the coil, cooling it down. Then, this newly cooled air is blown through the air ducts and fills the home with cool air. In homes with a furnace, the air handler will be part of the furnace system with an evaporator above it.

Illustration of how air conditioning works.

The Result: Keeping Your Home Cool

These components work together to keep your home cool even on the hottest days of the year. If any part of the system fails, it can cause major issues that could require repairs or full replacement. 

Homeowners who haven’t worked on HVAC systems can find it hard to repair these parts on their own. It can be tough to tell exactly where the problem lies, and many DIY repairs only lead to more issues. It’s important to consult a professional HVAC technician when you think you may need AC repairs.

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Trust Arronco Comfort Air for AC Repairs in Northern Kentucky

The team at Arronco Comfort Air has performed air conditioning services since 1984. We have resolved countless HVAC issues in our decades of serving northern Kentucky, Lexington, and Cincinnati residents. We can quickly get to the bottom of your AC issues and resolve them completely. Don’t risk further damage to your HVAC system when a team of experts can handle the repairs and replacements for you.

Contact Arronco Comfort Air today to discuss your air conditioning repair needs and schedule prompt, professional service.

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