Understanding how your air conditioner operates is essential to keeping a comfortable temperature inside your home and place of business. Considering that each type of air conditioner does not serve the same purpose, we will start with discussing the different kind of systems and what each of them are used for.
Split system hvac units are usually placed outside of the property and have both heating and cooling capabilities by blowing air over a coil and through ducts into vents. On the hot side there is a condensing unit to produce heat; and on the cold side, there is an expansion valve and evaporator coil to control the temperature.
Ductless Air Conditioner
Being one of the least expensive options, a ductless air conditioner unit, also referred to as a mini-split system, is a split system unit that is usually mounted on the inside of the wall and used to blow cold air into a particular area of your home, apartment, office or building. A ductless air conditioner has two main components, an outside unit, and an inside unit.
- Condenser: This is the outdoor unit; it is installed outside the property on a concrete slab and is responsible for pumping and cooling the refrigerant through the copper lines of the system.
- Evaporator: This is the indoor unit; it contains a fan that turns on and allows the indoor coil to absorb heat from the air inside the room and then distribute cooler air through the room.
Portable Air Conditioner
Like refrigerated air units, portable air conditioner systems use refrigerant to extract heat from the air and simultaneously cool the air. Once the air exchange is complete, a blower and fan push the cool air into the room and create a comfortable temperature and atmosphere.
Packaged Air Conditioner
Packaged units are like ductless air units in the way that they contain all the necessary components in one location or cabinet. However, unlike split system units and splitting the cold side from the hot side, packaged air systems are all in one and do not have an indoor furnace. The heating process is internal and completed with natural gas or an electric heat lamp that is located inside the packaged hvac unit itself.
Packaged terminal air conditioner (PTAC) systems are known as a wall-split unit. Packaged terminal air conditioner systems are installed through the wall of a building, their evaporator section and controls are located inside the cabinet with the condensing coil on the outside. PTAC units are normally installed inside hotel rooms, assisted living facilities and retirement homes.
Finally, before deciding on which hvac unit is right for you, you should consider these last view variables.
HVAC Compressor Type
- Single-Stage: With only one operating speed, a single-stage compressor runs more frequently at peak capacity and always uses the maximum energy that it possibly can.
- Two-Stage: With two different stages: a medium and high setting, two-stage units are more energy efficient than single-stage compressors and will reduce the cost of your utility bill over time.
Condenser Fan Motor
The condenser fan motor, which is part of the outdoor condensing unit, prevents the system fan compressor from overheating by using a single-stage or variable speed motor.
- Single-Stage: Like a single-stage compressor, a single-stage condenser fan motor only knows one speed and that is running full speed ahead at peak capacity and maximum energy usage.
- Variable Speed Motor: Variable speed motors connect to the motor control drive on the compressor and regulate their speed according to the temperature needed. By operating only when needed and using the minimum amount of energy possible to function, variable speed motors can reduce the cost of your electricity by up to 40%.
There is definitely a lot to learn, however if you are currently experiencing problems maintaining the temperature of your property, we suggest that you contact us immediately and schedule an appointment for your free service call and heating ventilation cooling and air conditioner tune up.