To make your home in Asheville, North Carolina, feel as comfortable as possible, it’s crucial that you have a well-running air conditioner. Your AC system has a variety of parts that work to keep your home cool, including evaporator and condenser coils. Learning more about these two types of air conditioner coils should make it easier to understand how your AC system works to keep your home cool.

Basics of Air Conditioners

Before we jump into how condenser and evaporator coils work to cool your home, it’s a good idea to learn a few basics about air conditioners. Most people assume their AC system creates cold air, much like a furnace creates warm air, but this is not the case. Instead, air conditioners work by taking the heat out of the air.

Air conditioners function by circulating refrigerant and transitioning it from a liquid to a gas state and back again. The refrigerant absorbs the heat from your home’s air and transfers it out of the house. Through this heat transfer, your air conditioner keeps your home at a comfortable temperature. Both the evaporator and the condenser coils play important roles in this transfer of heat. Without these two components, your air conditioner can’t work correctly.

What Does the Evaporator Coil Do?

The main purpose of the evaporator coil is to absorb the heat from your home’s air and transfer it into the refrigerant. You’ll find this coil inside your air conditioner’s indoor air handler. The blower in your system will draw warm air through your return ducts, and this air will then pass over the evaporator coil.

The refrigerant in your evaporator coil is in vapor form. It’s usually at 40 degrees to help it better absorb heat. The heat from your air makes its way through the copper coils of the evaporator coil, and the refrigerant absorbs it. Once the heat energy has been extracted by the evaporator coil, the remaining cold air makes its way into your supply ducts and spreads throughout your home.

After the refrigerant has removed heat from the air, it makes its way to the outdoor air conditioner unit via a conduit. First, the refrigerant flows into a compressor, which compresses the refrigerant and increases the vapor’s temperature to more than 100 degrees. Once the refrigerant is heated, it’s ready for the condenser coil.

How Does the Condenser Coil Work?

The condenser coil basically has the opposite function of the evaporator coil. Where the evaporator coil captures heat from the air, the condenser coil releases it. After the refrigerant has been compressed, it passes through the condenser coil. In the condenser coil, the refrigerant vapor turns into a liquid. During this process, the heat that the vapor has absorbed releases into the air outside your home.

Once the heat energy has been released, the pressurized liquid refrigerant flows back to the condenser coil. The refrigerant passes through a small opening to convert it back to a vapor so it’s ready to absorb more heat.

Maintaining Your Coils

If you want to keep your air conditioner working, it’s important to maintain both the evaporator and condenser coils. Over time, both coils can accumulate dirt and debris, although the condenser coil is more at risk because it’s outside. If your coils get dirty, they won’t be able to effectively transfer heat. As a result, you’ll feel uncomfortable conditions in your home.

Fortunately, with regular AC maintenance from a qualified HVAC professional, you can protect your coils. A professional will be able to clean your coils the right way so that refrigerant can flow in and out of your home and transfer heat to keep your home feeling cool.

Are you ready to schedule AC maintenance? Call Gentry Heating, Inc. today at 828-581-4045. One of our highly skilled professionals will give your AC system a tune-up and clean your evaporator and condenser coils.

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