Okheatingandair Blog

How Does An Air Conditioner Work?

Air conditioners are found in majority of residential and commercial buildings in the US. What most people do not know is they work more or less the same way as refrigerators. However, they cool entire rooms/buildings instead of small, enclosed compartments. Read on to learn how air conditioners work.

In-depth Look at an Air Conditioner

An air conditioner has three main parts: a condenser, an evaporator, and a compressor. The evaporator is usually located inside an air conditioner while the condenser and evaporator are located on the outside. These parts transfer heat from the air inside your house to the air outdoors. To achieve this goal, air conditioners evaporate and condense refrigerants inside a coil system repeatedly in a process called phase conversion.

In simple words, an air conditioner converts a liquid into a gas, which in turn absorbs heat from surrounding air. As warm air blows over an air conditioner’s coils, the refrigerant inside changes from a liquid to a gas thereby absorbing heat. This gas flows through a compressor where it is put under high pressure to extract heat, which is then funneled outdoors. Stripped of heat, the gas cools and changes into a liquid and it is recycled through the coils to extract heat from air again.

It is worth noting that air conditioners have fans that blow cold air over coils that contain refrigerants. These fans are usually connected to evaporators. In most buildings, you will come across a vent for sucking hot air located somewhere at the top of a room. This is because hot air is lighter than cold air making it rise to the top part of a room. Cold air is blown into the same room via openings/ducts at the floor level. This process of sucking in hot air, extracting heat, and then pumping in cold air continues repeatedly.


An air conditioner makes it easy to keep a room cool whenever temperatures are high. These cooling units use refrigerants flowing through a system of coils to extract heat from warm air in a process called phase conversion. Heat is funneled outdoors while cold air is blown indoors. Call us for all your heating and air conditioning needs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *