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Your AC unit is so much more than a box that magically disperses air into your home. There is a process behind keeping you comfortable and it’s important to know the ins and outs of your unit to understand that if one part breaks, it will throw off the entire process.

The Refrigeration Cycle

When you are enjoying time in your home, you aren’t thinking about the process your unit goes through to make you and your family comfortable. Your unit is working hard to take the warm (and humid) outside air and turn it into a cool, refreshing draft that circulates your home.

Your outside unit pulls in warm air using fans. This warm air is combined with refrigerant and within the evaporator, the refrigerant becomes liquid. Heat is absorbed and the remaining cold air is pushed out of the unit and into your unit.

Five Main Components of Your Unit

Your unit has more than five parts, trust us. But instead of overwhelming you with a every part that your unit is made up of, we’re just going to focus on the five that matter the most.


There are actually two fans that are used in your HVAC system. One is located in the outside unit where it is used to push hot air over condenser coils. The other is used to circulate the newly cooled air into your home.

If either fan is broken, air cannot be circulated in your home, nor can it be cooled because it would remain stagnant. Ensuring that your fan is working properly is essential to having a comfortable home!


The compressor, located in your outdoor unit, is referred to as the heart of your AC unit. It’s main job is to pressurize the refrigerant that passes through the unit. Once the refrigerant reaches a high pressure, it turns into vapor. Heat is absorbed from that vapor, leaving cooled air.

The compressor is your units superhero during the hot months because it’s the foundation for the cooling process. If it’s damaged, you won’t be able to have cold air and no one wants that!


Refrigerant is the match that ignites the process of heating and cooling air in your home. It transforms from a liquid into a gas in order to cool the copper coils in your unit. Air runs over these coils and the fan carries the air into the home. Without the refrigerant, the cooling and heating cycle couldn’t begin.


Liquid refrigerant enters the evaporator and soon reaches a boiling point. The refrigerant then becomes a gas. The heat from the gas will be absorbed by the evaporator, while the now cooled refrigerant is moved by the fans. The evaporator is the reason heat is absorbed, allowing for cooled air to be created.


The condenser is the opposite of the evaporator. While the evaporator absorbs heat, the condenser releases heat. The condenser will release this hot air back into the outdoors and away from your home.

Benefits of a Healthy AC Unit

When all these parts are working together, you can breathe easier and be comfortable in all kinds of weather. Having a healthy unit brings much more than cold (or on occasion, hot) air into your home. AC units that are working properly better remove particles and contaminants in your home and can serve as a dehumidifier.

AC Repair with Crystal Air & Water

It’s essential that every part of your AC unit is working. If one part breaks, the whole process is threatened. To make sure you and your family don’t have to experience a HVAC emergency, contact Crystal Air & Water about our routine maintenance plan. We can diagnose problems with your unit before they become costly repairs. And in the event that an emergency does happen, we offer 24/7 emergency service. We won’t stop until you are comfortable!

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