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How Does a Condenser Coil Work in Air Conditioners?

Aircon Parts

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Air conditioners work by condensing refrigerant gas into a liquid state, then transforming it back into a gaseous state that pulls the heat from the surrounding atmosphere. This process cools the air inside the air conditioner, which is then delivered to the room.

In this article, we discuss the role of the aircon condenser coil, how it works with the other parts of the air conditioning system.

What are the Evaporator and Condenser Coils?

The evaporator and condenser coils work together to create the cool air coming out of your air conditioner. Every cooling system has evaporator and condenser coils, where refrigerant flows through, and changes its states of matter to absorb heat, and cool the surrounding air. These coils are responsible for cooling your room, and are essential to air conditioners.

What Does the Condenser Coil Do?

The air conditioner condenser coil is made up of several tubes filled with refrigerant liquid. A chiller sits inside the coil which cools the fluid as it moves through the condenser tubing. The coolant starts as hot refrigerant vapor, and this vapor refrigerant releases heat energy extracted from the indoor air outdoors as it cools into a liquid state in the condenser coil.

The condenser coil does not work alone, however, and notably works with the indoor evaporator coil to maintain the closed loop system. To properly deliver cool air into the room, the refrigerant liquid needs to turn back into its original gaseous form, and the condenser coil passages redirect the coolant into the evaporator coils in the indoor air conditioning system.

What Does the Evaporator Coil Do?

From the condenser coil, the refrigerant flows through the evaporator coil, which allows the coolant to expand into a gaseous state. The expansion valve, located right by the evaporator coil, allows only a miniscule amount of the liquid refrigerant to pass through, giving the coolant enough space to expand into a gas.

As the condenser coil releases heat energy, the warm air meets with the frigid evaporator coil surfaces, which creates the condensation that reduces humidity levels, and cools the room. The refrigerant vapor returns to the condenser coil as a liquid refrigerant, starting the cycle all over again. This process is what keeps your room consistently cool.

The Importance of Evaporator and Condenser Coils in a Cooling System

  • Keeps the AC Unit Cool - Both the evaporator coil and the condenser coils work to cool the air around the room, but they also prevent air conditioners from overheating as the condenser coils extract the heat from the unit, and redirect the heat outdoors. This prevents the unit from overheating as the heat is transferred outside.
  • Blows Cool Air from Air Conditioners - The refrigerant flowing through the coils is what makes air conditioners cooling systems. The process results in cold air, which gets delivered to the room where the indoor unit is installed. Both the evaporator and condenser coils are present in every air conditioning unit from portable models, to central AC systems.

Diagnosing a Faulty Condenser Coil

  1. Air Conditioner is Making Loud Noises Outdoors - If your outdoor unit is making screeching, humming, or buzzing noises, there may be a problem with your condenser coil. Your condenser coils may be starting to break down and fail, which can stop your unit from blowing cool air into the room.
  2. Air Conditioner is Overheating - Since condenser coils are responsible for redirecting heat out of your unit, a failed or failing condenser coil won't work well in keeping your AC unit cool. Your air conditioning unit may start overheating, and you may notice your unit blowing warm air instead.

Diagnosing a Faulty Evaporator Coil

  1. Air Conditioning System is Freezing Up - Dirty evaporator coils can lead to an AC unit freezing up. This causes your unit to blow warm air instead of cool air, and may leak water indoors as the ice melts. Cleaning your evaporator coils should fix the problem immediately. You can use a vacuum cleaner with the brush attachment to clean the evaporator coils.
  2. Air Conditioning System is Blowing Warm Air - A failing evaporator coil will not be able to cool the air properly, leading to warm air blowing out of your unit. However, an AC unit blowing warm air may have other causes, such as a dirty filter, and dirty evaporator coils. Having an HVAC technician check your unit is the best way to know the source of the problem.

Keep Your Home and Aircon Cool

For professional air conditioning service and repair, contact us here at Luce Aircon. Our team of aircon experts and technicians are always here, ready to help you with any of your air conditioning needs — from the maintenance of your air conditioner coils and refrigerant gas top-ups to chemical washing and repairs!

Contact us today for a free consultation.

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Staff Writer

This article is written by our passionate staff writers who seek to share our knowledge from our business

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