Understanding Your Air Conditioner
Your air conditioner lives in your home full time—why not get acquainted with it?
By learning a bit about your AC’s components and functions, you’ll have an easier time caring for it. Problems will be easier to identify and communicate to one of our Comfort Zone Heating & Cooling specialists.
You’ll also gain a better grasp of maintenance. Prevention is the best medicine—simple tasks like replacing your filter monthly go a long way. Changing out a dirty filter can instantly improve efficiency, saving you up to 15 percent on your utility bill, according to the US Department of Energy (DOE).
Comfort Zone Heating & Cooling is committed to friendly and transparent service. We’re pleased to provide our Idaho neighbors accurate and up-to-date heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) information, so you can make informed decisions you’re completely satisfied with.
How Does Air Conditioning Help My Home?
Your AC does more than keep your living space a comfortable temperature. The evaporator removes heat and humidity from the air. From there, it converts to water, exiting down the condensate drain. With well-balanced humidity, mold has a harder time growing.
Additionally, surfaces like wood and tile are protected from excess moisture. The filter also catches allergens like pollen and dander. This, along with the mold reduction improves indoor air quality (IAQ).
How Does the AC Cool Down My Home?
If you’ve ever put your hand up to the condenser (the outdoor box with a fan), you may notice the air coming out feels warm. That’s because your central air system doesn’t add cool air—it subtracts hot air.
Indoors, the heat gets soaked up by refrigerant liquid located in the indoor evaporator unit. The liquid travels through coils to the outdoor condenser, which pushes the heat away with its fan. This process will loop until your home reaches the set thermostat temperature.
Know Your AC
- The evaporator transforms the refrigerant from a liquid into gas. It’s located inside your home, also known as the “cool side.”
- The expansion valve sits between the indoor and outdoor components. It lowers pressure on the gas-state refrigerant, which makes it easier for the liquid to undergo conversion.
- The condenser takes the gas refrigerant from the expansion valve and changes it back into a liquid. This is also known as a “heat transfer.” The condenser can be found outdoors, or the “hot side.”
- The compressor is a big electric pump that pressurizes the liquid refrigerant before it gets converted to gas in the evaporator. It is located on the “hot side.”
Maintaining Your Air Conditioner
As previously mentioned, make sure you change your air filter once a month. Clogged filters can strain your cooling equipment and eventually lead to serious mechanical problems. When performing yard work, clear away any shrubbery, leaves, or sticks obstructing the outdoor condenser.
Your AC gets heavy use during our sweltering Idaho summer months. That’s why it’s a good idea to schedule a maintenance visit during the spring. One of our HVAC specialists will perform vital cleaning, lubricating, and inspecting to ensure your cooling system runs at peak performance all summer.