How An HVAC System Works: Air Conditioning

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems play a vital role in our homes and offices. The term encompasses several components that work in tandem to keep our homes comfortable and safe. Heating warms the house in cool weather. Air Conditioning keeps us cool when the temperature outside is high. Ventilation allows air to exchange air within a confined space to improve air quality. These factors join forces to provide temperature control, oxygen replenishment, and the removal of moisture, smoke, dust, odors, bacteria, carbon dioxide, and hot or cold air. When constructing your new home, HVAC is a must. However, many do not fully understand just how the system works. It is much more than pushing a button on your thermostat. While a HVAC system can be very complex, below you will find a basic overview of how these systems work to protect us.

Types of HVAC Components and SystemsHVAC System

There are a number of standard HVAC systems and components to choose from, all with different features and purposes. For the purpose of this brief overview, we will look at the standard elements of these various air conditioning systems to explain how the work. There are pros and cons to every system, and individual systems work best for a particular application. Your builder or HVAC contractor can aid you in choosing what will work best for your needs.

Air Conditioning Components

Whether you are using a window, ductless, or central air conditioner, all will have the same necessary components to be effective. First, each will use a material called refrigerant. This refrigerant is pumped through the air conditioning system and collects the heat from the air that is circulating through the system. The refrigerant then releases the heat outside. This process makes the air in your room or home cooler and more comfortable. The refrigerant is circulated in a loop, and it is the compressor that keeps it flowing. The compressor is a pump that pushes the refrigerant through the system. Refrigerant enters the compressor as a warm, low-pressure vapor and leaves it as a hot, high-pressure vapor. A condenser is the next step in the journey for the refrigerant. It consists of tubing called condenser coils. These coils have metal fins attached to them called a condenser fan. Air blows over these fins cooling the hot vapor refrigerant and changes it into a hot liquid. The large unit that sits outside your home contains the compressor, condenser coil, and condenser fan.

The expansion valve is the next component the refrigerant will move through. The now hot liquid refrigerant is pushed through a minuscule opening of the valve at high pressure. The valve allows the gas to expand and then releases a low-pressure mist of refrigerant on the other side. The works because gas cools as it expands. The refrigerant mist leaves the valve and runs through the evaporator coil. The hot air in your home is blown across the evaporator coil and heats it. The refrigerant moving through the cold coil cools the air and releases it back into your home. The heated refrigerant boils and evaporates back into a warm vapor. The vapor reenters the compressor, and the cycle continues.

Air conditioning is important for many reasons including comfort, safety, and even helps reduce maintenance issues that can arise from improper HVAC operations. It can be confusing to understand how these systems work together. A basic understanding helps, but it is always recommended to consult with your builder with questions and advice when choosing the right system for your new home.

Progressive Builders Is Here For You!

Progressive Builders is dedicated to partnering with you every step of the home building process to ensure that your home plan will accommodate your lifestyle and will meet the needs of your family. We also can assist you in finding the right floor plan and constructing your home with a focus on quality, all at an outstanding value. With over 20 years of experience, we’ve built a reputation across the Twin Cities metro area and beyond and are committed to continuing that level of excellence for your new home construction project. We have a number of customizable home plans to suit your needs and several lots available in neighborhoods across the Metro. We invite you to contact us today for more information.