When you think of Florida, you think of Disney World, palm trees, and blistering heat. You cannot live without an air conditioner in the Sunshine State, and when your HVAC unit breaks, it can be very uncomfortable. An air conditioner has several working parts, and it is important to understand how an air conditioner works to understand why it is not doing its job.
How an Air Conditioner Works
When you were in physics class, you probably learned about the law of conservation of energy. You cannot change the amount of energy that is in a system. Hence, you cannot create or destroy heat.
An air conditioning system does not make hot air from cold air. An AC unit brings warm air in through a grille in the same way that a vacuum cleaner would. This air flows above chiller pipes that contain refrigerant. The hot air moves over a coil in the evaporator, enabling the refrigerant to absorb the heat, causing the air to become colder. A fan blows this air back into the room, and the room will start to cool.
The cycle will repeat until the air in your home is finally the temperature you desire. When this happens, the air conditioner will shut off. When the room starts to get warm again, the air conditioner will turn on.
Eventually, the refrigerant will get hot and will have to cool down. It flows through a compressor and then a condenser. Although the refrigerant absorbs the hot air, it still exists in the system because of the laws of conservation of energy. The hot air needs to go somewhere, so the condenser and the compressor will push the air outside. If you were to touch the condenser of your air conditioner with your finger, you would notice that it is really hot.
Because of all of the components an air conditioner has, there are several reasons that your home may not be cool.
The Refrigerant is Low or Leaking
Occasionally, an air conditioner will run low on refrigerant, and this will cause a leak. When there is not enough refrigerant in your air conditioner, heat will not be absorbed properly or as quickly.
According to AC repair in Orlando, you should never try to change your refrigerant yourself. An HVAC technician can change the refrigerant and look for the causes of the leak.
The Filter is Dirty or Clogged
People in Florida tend to run their air conditioners all year long, so the air filters get twice as clogged with hair, dirt, and allergens. It is important to clean and change your air filter regularly. Most HVAC professionals will tell you to change your filter once a year, but in Florida, you should probably do it every six months.
The Thermostat is Broken
Your air conditioner is probably set to turn on when the temperature in your home gets above a certain level. If your thermostat is not working properly, the AC will not know when to turn on. In some cases, this can be caused by a user error. Your thermostat should not be set to heat; it should be set to auto or cool.
The Evaporator Coil is Not Working.
The evaporator coil is essential to your air conditioner’s operations. If the coil doesn’t work, the refrigerant will not get cool enough to absorb heat. An HVAC specialist may be able to repair a bad coil for you.
You don’t realize how important air conditioning is until you have to live without it. If you take care of your air conditioner, it will keep you comfortable all year long.