How Does an Air Conditioner Work to Cool Your Home?

How Does an Air Conditioner Work to Cool Your Home?


Fact: An air conditioner (aircon) is the best appliance to beat the heat.


But, how does an aircon work? Is it true that an aircon transforms hot air into cold air for your room?


Let’s walk through the whole process of how an aircon works, an appliance that makes it possible to have a good night—every night.


The key components of an aircon


Before we go any further, it is best to know the critical parts of an aircon first. These components play essential roles in how an aircon works. Knowing about them also help to understand better the way air conditioner helps in cooling your home.


  • AC remote controller or thermostat: a device to turn on and off your aircon, set the desired temperature, and mode
  • Evaporator or evaporator coil: the part that extracts heat from your indoor space
  • Compressor: the refrigerant (also known as gas or Freon) mover, transferring refrigerant between evaporator and condenser
  • Condenser: the component that releases heat—extracted by the evaporator—to your indoor space
  • Air filter: the part in your indoor unit to screen particles from the air
  • Expansion valve: the component that controls refrigerant flow to the evaporator


How do air conditioners work?

how does aircon work or the refrigeration cycle simplified

Image source: Energy Vanguard


The simple truth is air conditioners do not create cold air or transform hot air into a cold one. Instead, how an aircon works actually remove warm air inside your home or building. Then, it brings a chilly environment through the refrigeration cycle for you, as explained in the following steps.


  1. The evaporator coil removes the heat


When you turn on your aircon, either with a remote controller or thermostat, the aircon will start working to remove the heat inside your room if you use one.


First, your system draws warm air in your room into the system. Then, the warm air flows over the evaporator. The coil and the flowing refrigerant within the system absorb the heat during this process.


Afterwards, refrigerant evaporates, turning from a liquid into its gaseous or vaporised form and move at the same time toward the compressor.


  1. The compressor prepares the vaporised refrigerant for condensation


Once the vaporised refrigerant enters the compressor, the compressor will decrease the volume of the vaporised refrigerant. Next, the compressor raises the pressure and temperature of the vaporised refrigerant. What follows, then, is the condensing process.


  1. The condenser transfers heat outside


The refrigerant during this process has transformed into a hot, vaporised refrigerant.


Thankfully, the condenser located in the outdoor unit will release the heat outside.


The outside air then absorbs the heat, lowering the temperature of the refrigerant and allowing condensation to happen—the process in which the vaporised refrigerant back into a liquid form again.


  1. The process recirculate the air in your room and repeat


After the third step, the condensation is bound to happen. It aids in recirculating cold air into the room.


After condensation, the system blows back the already cold air where it mixes with the existing air inside where your aircon is. As it disperses, the temperature and humidity within the room will decrease.


But, how is that possible? It is because the refrigerant will move back to the indoor unit from outside.


The refrigerant moves back by going through the expansion valve. Inside the valve, that warm, liquid refrigerant expands into a bigger volume, resulting in a significant temperature drop.


After going through the valve, the refrigerant is back to the evaporator coils inside your indoor unit again. This initiates another refrigeration cycle to start again so the inside temperature of your indoor space can reach the desired temperature shown on the AC remote controller or thermostat.


In short, the refrigeration cycle removes warm air from your room, transferring it outside and resulting in a colder room since the heat is already removed.


Maintaining the efficiency of your aircon

maintaining aircon is the best way to keep how aircon should work

Image source: U.S. Department of Energy


The best way to maintain your aircon is by giving it regular cleaning and professional aircon servicing. Professional services from seasoned technicians keep your aircon running efficiently throughout the year.


At Purer Fresher Air, we have been providing comprehensive aircon servicing for more than three decades. We are a BCA registered aircon service company authorised to perform regular servicing and cleaning, aircon chemical cleaning, and installation. And when you think you need an aircon gas top-up, our team can also perform a series of tests to determine whether it is really necessary or not for your aircon.


Contact us today at +65 9830 8224 or book an appointment now to keep your aircon runs smoothly.

Get Purer Fresher Air With Us Today!