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Heating & Air News

Air Conditioners 101: Everything You Need to Know About Modern ACs

Posted by Howell's Heating & Air on August 31, 2021

Are modern air conditioners more efficientToday's air conditioners are a true technological marvel. It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that the combination of efficiency, resilience, affordability, features, and sleek aesthetics newer ACs offer would've been unimaginable just one or two decades ago.

In fact, an AC that receives regular tuneups and maintenance visits can easily last significantly longer than its expected 10-20 year service life without requiring major AC repair service visits in Chesterfield, VA. Considering how frequently we use our air conditioners, this translates into massive value for the average homeowner.

We have previously discussed the optimal AC placement in a room and listed the most commonly used types of air conditioners. Now we will take a look at what makes the magic happen. Keep reading to learn more about the inner workings of today's air conditioners and how they translate into greater comfort and long-term savings for you and your family.

How do modern air conditioners work?

Broadly speaking, ACs provide cooling by drawing heat out of a building and expelling it outside. To accomplish this, they use a combination of components similar to the ones found in household refrigerators, but with a few key differences.

Here's how it works:

  • Warm indoor air is pulled into the AC and passes over some chiller pipes filled with refrigerant. This cools it down and removes excess moisture. The fan at the top then pushes the cooled air back into the room. 
  • In some AC models, this indoor air also passes over a heating element that can be used to provide heating on a cold day.
  • At the same time, the refrigerant (a volatile substance that quickly changes shape between vapor and liquid) flows through a system of pipes. As it does this, it picks up heat from the air that flows over the pipes and carries it to the AC's exterior unit, where it pases through a compressor unit and some condensing pipes, effectively giving up the warm air.
  • The warm air is then dissipated across a number of metal plates. A powerful exterior fan facilitates this process by continuously blowing air over the metal plates.

Are modern air conditioners more efficient?

And how! AC manufacturers have had a long time to refine their designs and technologies, and it really shows in the way newer units are able to deliver better cooling and higher comfort levels while also expending less electricity.

Here's why today's ACs are superior:

  • Modern refrigerant. Today's refrigerant of choice, R410A, is not only a lot more energy efficient than the old R-22, it's also far more environmentally friendly.
  • Better components. Over the years, the individual parts have received a number of improvements to make them more efficient and easier to produce.
  • Variable-speed fans reduce or increase their speed as needed. This limits energy usage and also causes the fan motor to last longer by reducing wear.
  • Multi-stage compressors are designed to cut down power usage by automatically reducing output at the appropriate times.

How do modern air conditioners workWhere can I find a dependable AC repair service in Chesterfield, VA?

Are you looking to equip your home near the Magnolia Grange in Chesterfield with a state-of-the-art air conditioning system? Or perhaps you're in need of an efficient furnace repair or replacement service?

Here at Howell's Heating & Air, we can assist you with all that and more. With over 50 years of industry presence and a long list of satisfied clients, we are your premier choice for all things related to heating and cooling system repair, installation, and maintenance. Contact us today and enjoy the perks of having your HVAC needs met by the top technicians in Virginia.

Serving greater Richmond, VA

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