The goal of air conditioning is thermal comfort and good air quality indoors; this makes the technology behind air conditioning all about environmental –vehicular and indoor- comfort.
This technology is actually a mechanical engineering sub-discipline built around the principles of heat transfer, thermodynamics, and fluid mechanics.
Over time, air conditioning has become essential features of buildings like residential apartments, hotels, office buildings, industrial buildings, and large buildings like hospitals and skyscrapers.
We also find air conditioning in cars, airplanes, submarines, ships and other structures where the need arises for a regulation – employing the use of the fresh are outdoors – of the flow of air, humidity, and heat. For more on this, you can read this article.
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The Elements of Refrigeration
Four necessary elements are required in refrigeration to achieve cooling.
- The Compressor: because it all starts with the gaseous, there is a need to pump the refrigerant to high pressure and temperature. The compressor does this.
- The Heat Exchanger: here, the refrigerant condenses into liquid and cools. The heat exchanger is also known as a condenser or condensing coil.
- The Expansion Valve: this is a regulator that ensures the refrigerant’s proper flow rate.
- The Evaporator: this is a second heat exchanger that sees to the refrigerant’s evaporation by its absorption of heat from the air inside the space being cooled.
From the evaporator, the refrigerant returns back to the compressor, and the entire process repeats.
The air conditioning system just keeps repeating this process and in the cause of it, heat is continually removed from the air in the space requiring cooling. The end result is a cooled space.
Some systems are built with reversible valves; the function being that of a switch changing from heating to cooling. The valve reverses the direction of the flow, making the evaporator the compressor and vice versa.
The result is that the heat ends up inside the space, thereby warming it up. So the same equipment cools in summer becomes a heater in winter.
Maintenance and Repairs
Like every other equipment, air conditioners too require maintenance and repairs. The most basic maintenance you can give it is cleaning. The filters are the main component requiring regular cleaning.
Dust, fur, smoke, and other small particles are some of the materials that can lodge within the filters, necessitating their cleaning.
What it means is that a dusty road or a home filled with furry pets will result in a more frequent need for the cleaning or replacement of the filters.
When filters are not cleaned or replaced as at when due, heat exchanges poorly and bring about energy inefficiency. This, apart from increasing your energy bills, puts your equipment at the risk of permanent damage.
Dirt-clogged filters can cause overheating if in a heat cycle, which can result in a fire. Conversely, they can allow the formation of iced particles in the evaporator coils and stop airflow completely.
In keeping the filters clean, the condenser must equally be kept clean as failure to do this will damage the compressor.
Some Signs Your Air Conditioner Is Due For Repair
It’s oozing hot air:
Hot air oozing out of your system is a sign that the compressor might be broken. It could also be a signal that the refrigerant might be leaking.
Fixing any of these will not cost you much, but it is something that you must-do if you want to keep enjoying your AC.
Moisture around your AC:
Leaks or moisture around your AC is proof of a problem. The moisture, if due to drain tube blockage, is a minor problem. It requires no urgency; yet, you won’t want mold and mildew to grow there.
If the moisture, however, is shown to result from refrigerant leaking, it’s more serious. Addressing this soonest would save you other problems.
A sound AC should do its work quietly. The motor will generate sound, but it should not be the sound of grating, grinding, or squealing.
If you notice such sounds, then it is advisable you do something quick about it. Usually, they are problems that can be remedied.
Smells may be indicative of mold growth. They could also indicate burnt insulation wire. While strong and pungent smells point to burning wires, musty smells hint at the presence of molds. Both are issues deserving quick attention, for health as well as safety reasons.
Abnormal levels of humidity:
Mist around windows or stickiness in the room are hints of high humidity. This shows that your AC is failing in its job to drop the humidity levels of your room. When you notice this, it is time to give your AC repairer a call.
Considering the importance of the AC and the possibility that it could pack up suddenly if some signs have probably been ignored over time, having a 24 hour AC repair service becomes very important.
A 24-hour service such as is offered by centralairandappliance.com ensures that users will not have to stay without the service of their AC for longer than necessary.
As you have seen, cleaning of filters and condensers is not the only form of maintenance your system might need.
In the maintenance of equipment, component parts might have to be replaced and there might be a need for electrical reworks here or there. It is always advisable to involve trained hands in these maintenances or repairs.
In fact, the larger and more complex the system you have, the greater the need for a professional to maintain or repair. If you used one in the installation, you will surely need one for maintenance and repairs.