What’s the Difference Between the AC Compressor and Condenser?

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Compressor vs Condenser

Air conditioning is a necessity when you live here in Southwest Florida. Even though you run your cooling system year-round, do you know what’s happening inside the unit?

The most important parts of the air conditioner unit are the condenser and compressor – but what is the difference between them? Why are they important? AC Today experts can answer your questions.

AC Compressor
The compressor and condenser work together to release heat from inside the home and pressurize the refrigerant. Essentially, the compressor is the heart of the AC system.

Compressors have two openings – one that pulls refrigerant from the evaporator and one that discharges pressurized refrigerant to the condenser coil. Refrigerant needs compression because it works through heat exchange. It then tries to balance its temperature with the surrounding air. That means the refrigerant must be even hotter than the outside temperature (which we know can get HOT in August), which is why the vapor is pressurized. The refrigerant then moves on to the condenser, where the cooling occurs.

AC Condenser
The condenser is comprised of a fan and coils. Refrigerant gas leaves the compressor and goes to the outside unit’s condenser coil. A large fan pulls outdoor air through the condenser coil, allowing the air to absorb heating energy from the home and releases it outside. During this process, the refrigerant converts back to a liquid. It then goes through a copper tube back to the indoor unit, where it passes through an expansion device, which regulates the flow of refrigerant into the evaporator coil. The cold refrigerant then absorbs more heat from the indoor air, and the cycle continues.

The compressor and condenser in your AC unit are important pieces that work together to make your home cool and comfortable during the never-ending Florida heatwaves. And with our ACs constantly running, you may need to repair or replace these parts. But don’t worry – AC Today won’t leave you out in the heat.

Schedule your next appointment online or give us a call 941-751-2642.

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