Why Your Air Conditioner Needs Refrigerant

The cooling process is an interesting one, largely because it relies on a single chemical that changes states very easily: the refrigerant. While Freon was formerly used as a refrigerant, today’s refrigerant, also known as R-22, is a much more environmentally friendly option. Why is refrigerant so important? In short, because it facilitates the transfer of heat from your home. While air conditioners appear to cool a space by blowing cool air into it, what your AC actually does is remove heat and humidity and replaces it with cooled air – thanks to refrigerant.

The States of Refrigerant

Refrigerant is very easily affected by temperature, and the effects are that depending on its temperature, it can turn from gas to liquid and back to gas. In each state it does something different: when in a liquid form, it releases heat; in a gas form, it absorbs heat. This is extremely important for your air conditioner because without these qualities, it would be difficult to achieve the cooling process. So what is the cooling process? Let’s start just before the compressor. Refrigerant at this stage of your AC cycle is in a gaseous state, where it absorbs the heat from your indoors. It flows into your compressor where it is pressurized.

This pressurization increases the heat so that, when it flows out of the compressor into the condenser coils, it releases the absorbed heat. As the refrigerant travels through the coils, it cools and changes states from gas to liquid. This liquid passes through a valve into the evaporator coils where it cools the coils inside the evaporator. Warm air from your indoors is blown over the evaporator coils, changing the state of the refrigerant back to a gas, which is cool. The cool air from the evaporator is blown into your home, moisture is extracted in the form of a condensation and then the process starts all over again.

Your air conditioner was made to operate with a specific amount of refrigerant or else it won’t work properly. If you suspect you may have a refrigerant leak, call the experts at Certified Air Systems, Inc., right away and schedule an AC repair appointment for your home in Orlando, FL.

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