Ah, cleaning the house. Not exactly the most exciting way to spend a day, is it? Even so, it is something that needs to get done on something at least resembling a regular basis. What about those areas or pieces of equipment that are not covered by your regular cleaning schedule, though? What about the coils in your air conditioning system? Now, this is not something that we’d expect you to clean when you’re vacuuming the house, but it does have to be done.
There are 2 coils that you need to be concerned with when it comes to your air conditioner in Lake Stevens, WA. These are the evaporator coil, which resides in the indoor unit of your AC, and your condenser coil, in the outdoor condenser unit. Both of these coils play a major role in the overall cooling operation of your air conditioning system. If they are very dirty or otherwise compromised, you will struggle to cool your home with the success that you deserve.
What the Coils Do
The evaporator and condenser coils perform pretty much the opposite task of one another, though each is integral to the successful completion of one single task. The evaporator coil is, appropriately enough, the point at which refrigerant is evaporated in your air conditioning system. The refrigerant draws heat out of the air passing over the evaporator coil, allowing it to be cooled and redistributed throughout your house. Now, it’s time for the refrigerant to cool off. That is where the condenser coil comes into play.
The outdoor condenser unit, you’ll notice, is covered with little openings and very thin strips of metal. These are the condenser coil fins. As refrigerant passes through the condenser coil, its heat is shed and the refrigerant — you guessed it — condenses. What we have just described is a very basic overview of the refrigerant cycle, which allows for the transfer of heat necessary for keeping your home comfortable in the summer.
Why Are Dirty Coils a Problem?
Having excessive dirt and debris on the evaporator or condenser coil is a big deal. If the evaporator coil is very dirty, it will have trouble absorbing heat from the air passing over it. This inhibits the cooling process, and can lead to the coil itself getting too cold. When that happens, the condensation that has collected on the coil can actually freeze up. This creates a layer of ice that acts as an insulating barrier, which only makes the coil’s job harder. This can strain the compressor, eventually leading to damages, while also driving up energy costs even as your comfort plummets.
If the condenser coil is very dirty, then your system is going to have a hard time releasing heat. This will strain the fan in the condenser while disrupting the flow of the ongoing refrigerant cycle. Neither of these situations is conducive to the cooling of your home. During routine mainteannce, your AC technician can clean these coils, straightening out the fins on the outdoor unit as needed, too. By keeping a fresh air filter in your AC and keeping yard waste and debris away from the outdoor unit, you can do your part to protect your coils.
Schedule your AC services with the pros here at G & S Heating Cooling & Electric.