Understanding How Central Air Conditioning Works

Your home’s heating and cooling play a major role in your family’s comfort, so choosing the right system is important. If you’re thinking about upgrading to a new air conditioner in Portland, then you may have questions about different units. Use this guide to learn about how central air conditioning works. air - conditioner

The System

To cool a home, a central air conditioning unit uses several processes which include temperature control, air circulation, and cooling. A thermostat is located on a wall in the central area of the home, and it is used to regulate how cool the system should make the home. Once the thermostat detects that the house is warmer than the programmed temperature, it switches on the air conditioner.

The Parts

While individual air conditioning units can vary in their design, each central air system has several main components that operate in similar ways. The condensing unit is the part that is located outside of the home and contains the condenser coils, condenser fan motor, and compressor. Inside of the home is the part of the unit that houses the evaporator coils, which are located over an air handler or a furnace. The compressor’s job is to compress the refrigerant inside the condenser coils, which is in gas form, into a liquid. This liquid is then pumped into the evaporator coils, where it expands and turns into a gas, a process which cools the evaporator coils.

The Function

The air handler or furnace uses a fan to pull air in through the return vent, blow it over the evaporator coils to cool it, and then push it through the system’s ductwork and out through vents that are located throughout the home. This process continues to cool the air in the home until the thermostat detects that the air has reached the correct temperature. Once your home’s air is cooled to the right temperature, the thermostat triggers the fan and condenser unit to turn off.

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