All About Air Conditioners

An air conditioner is an appliance that cools down living areas in hot weather. Some varieties also provide heat during cold weather and extract heat during hot weather. There are many varieties available, so make sure to choose the one that is best for you.

Working Mechanism

Though many of us do not realize it, the air conditioner is very much similar in operating mechanism to the refrigerator. Both appliances use the refrigerant gas called Freon. An air conditioning unit consists of a compressor that compresses the refrigerant gas. Due to the compression, the gas is pressurized, and becomes hot. The hot gas is then sent through coils to lose its heat and condense to a liquid form. The liquid form is directed to a valve, where it expands and evaporates to a cold gas. This cold gas is then used to fill up coils that absorb heat from the surrounding space, thereby heating up the gas again. This cycle is repeated, with the air conditioner absorbing hot air from your home or office, and recycling it out as cool air. The coils in the air conditioning unit are kept lubricated with an appropriate greasy material.

There are several different types of air conditioners, all of which differ in size and capacity, according to the size of the space they are meant to cool. Wall Air Conditioners Installed through walls, these air conditioners are permanent fixtures, and are quite economical and efficient. Portable Air Conditioners These cooling units can be moved from one location to another easily, and can cool small to medium sized rooms. They can, however, be more expensive because of their portability

Central Air Conditioning Units

Usually seen in backyards of homes, a central air conditioning unit cools an entire building. It uses a ventilation system and air ducts to suck out the hot air and replace it with cooler air. The main advantage of these units is that they cannot be seen or heard, as they are kept outdoors.

Air conditioners are available with many features, such as remote controls, timers, and dust filters. Some newer models also eliminate wastage of water by recycling it back and using it for cooling. However, the use of Freon is not beneficial to the environment, as it contributes to the destruction of the protective ozone layer over the earth. Newer models are seeking to eliminate the use of Freon in air conditioners, and the use of this gas will be eliminated in a few years.

Ductless Mini-split systems

These consist of a wall mounted indoor unit, refrigerant lines and an outdoor condenser. They are very efficient and are used in an open room application. Most come with a remote control digital thermostat.