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How Your Air Conditioner Uses Refrigerant

You don’t need to know how the vast majority of the systems you use every day work in order to benefit from them. However, sometimes it helps to know a little about the system so that you can keep it in better shape. With summer fast approaching, we thought it would help to go over the core of most home air conditioning systems: refrigerant. Read on to find out how your air conditioner uses refrigerant, and the problems related to it.


Refrigerant is not one specific fluid, but a term used to describe a number of different fluids that all do the same general thing. In a standard split air conditioning system, there are two coils, one installed inside and one outside. The inside coil, which is called the evaporator coil, evaporates refrigerant to absorb thermal energy from the air in the ducts. The refrigerant gas is then sent outside to the condenser coil, where it is converted back into liquid. This releases the collected heat outside the home. This cycle continues for as long as the air conditioner is operating, with the refrigerant passing back and forth between the two coils.

Refrigerant Leaks

Air conditioners do not consume refrigerant. So, the initial charge of refrigerant that an air conditioner receives upon installation should be enough to last for its entire lifespan. The only time that this is not the case is when a leak develops in the refrigerant line. If that happens, the system will be drained of the fluid that it needs to operate. This will cause a slow decline in efficiency, followed by multiple malfunctions and an eventual full-system breakdown. If you notice fluid dripping from your air conditioner, call for repairs right away.

Celco Heating and Air Conditioning offers air conditioner repair services throughout Celco. 

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