Keeping your home comfortable ranks high on your list of priorities. You have a system in place to make that happen, but how much do you know about that system? Sometimes a basic knowledge of your HVAC system can help you identify issues and know when you need to call a service technician.
HVAC Purpose and Function
Let’s start with the very basic: what do the initials H.V.A.C. stand for? Each letter stands for one of the functions of the system: Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. The HVAC plays an important role in the comfort of a home by using fresh outdoor air to improve the quality of air inside your home. It filters out dust, bacteria, carbon dioxide, odors, and more. This is the ventilation function. The heating function, or furnace, heats the air in the winter, then sends the heated air to the rooms of your house. This combined with the air conditioning function is what keeps the temperature of your home comfortable.
The AC in HVAC: Air Conditioning
Perhaps the most important component of the AC system is the refrigerant. Without it, there would be no AC. Refrigerant is contained inside the copper coils throughout the condenser and the evaporator. As it flows through the copper coils, it changes from gas to liquid and back again, all the while absorbing the heat from the indoor air.
That leads us to a very simplified picture of the AC. It can be broken down into two important units: the indoor unit and the outdoor unit.
The indoor unit is referred to as the evaporator or air handler. Its function is to absorb heat from the air in the home. As air from the house passes over the evaporator coils, the refrigerant in the coils absorbs the heat. After the air is cooled using this process, it is blown through ducts to all the areas of the home. Vents in the ductwork allow the cool air to circulate
An important part of the indoor unit is the filter. The air filter keeps dust and contaminants from entering the system. This protects the system from the wear and tear that the buildup of dust and dirt can cause. Be sure to regularly change the filter in your unit. You can read more about the importance of changing air filters in this blog post.
The outdoor unit of the AC system is the condenser. Heat is transferred from the evaporator (indoor unit) to the condenser (outdoor unit) via the refrigerant carried in refrigerant tubes. Within the condenser, there are three main components: compressor, condenser coils, and a fan.
The compressor’s job is to continually move the refrigerant through the lines back and forth between the evaporator and the condenser. When refrigerant goes through the condenser coils, absorbed heat is released to be dissipated outside. In this way, heat is transferred from the refrigerant to the outside air.
This heat transfer cools the refrigerant and the process begins again. Cooled refrigerant is sent to the evaporator via refrigerant tubes to absorb indoor heat and send cooled air to the rooms to the home.
Having a basic understanding of how your HVAC system works will help you keep it functioning efficiently. It will also help you understand your HVAC technician’s explanations should a repair be needed. Long Heating & Cooling offers complete service and repair and will dependably handle all your HVAC needs. Call 334-790-0977.