We all know when the temperature outside is just unbearable we head inside for
the relief of air conditioning. Just turn the thermostat to “Cool” and feel the cool
air surround you. Did you ever wonder how your air conditioner works?
Did you know that your air conditioning system actually uses the heat in your
home to make your home cooler?
Often referred to as a split system, an air conditioning system is made up of
three major components. The indoor evaporator coil that is attached to your
furnace or air handler, the outdoor condensing unit, and the compressor that sits
inside the condensing unit.
The split system is filled with a
chemical refrigerant that will
boil both at a high and low
temperature. A universally
used term for this refrigerant
is Freon. The refrigerant
leaves the compressor as a
hot, high-pressure gas
and flows through the coils on
the outdoor unit condensing
the gas to a liquid before
entering the evaporator coil
in the house. The heat from
the indoor air blowing across
the evaporator coil causes the
liquid to evaporate, converting
it back to a low temperature
gas. This process also removes moisture known as humidity from the indoor
air. The refrigerant returns to the compressor where it is compressed back into
a hot, high-pressure gas. The cycle continues until the air temperature inside
the house is reaches the desired setting on the thermostat. The result is a cool
and comfortable home!
Spring cleaning. We all know it is coming. Some people anxiously wait the day all the windows can
be opened wide and rid the house of winter. While others love spring but not so much the cleaning
part. I am the latter. I love seeing spring flowers bursting with color and finally green leaves on the
trees!! Now for the spring cleaning inside my house, I tend to procrastinate on this task.
When or if you tackle the task of spring cleaning don't forget about your appliances.
If you are still using your furnace or run your furnace fan only to circulate air, don't forget to check your
furnace filter(s). After a thorough house cleaning the dust that has been stirred up will be collected in
Another area of your home to check is your dryer vent. Lint can build up in the vent and can cause a
fire. When you have the vacuum out this spring don't forget to vacuum out the vent pipe. Most dryer
vents are fastened with tape or a draw band and can be disconnected from the wall where the vent
exits the house. A great tool to have on hand is a dryer vent lint brush, a long and flexible brush that is
able to reach deep inside the dryer vent to loosen any trapped lint to be vacuumed out. This brush can
be purchased at any home improvement store.
That same brush can be used to clean out under your refrigerator. It is always a delight to discover just
what has been trapped under the refrigerator all winter...a favorite pen, milk cap ring, a few M&M's, or
maybe some spare change!! The coils under your refrigerator should be cleaned annually. If you have
indoor pets or dust bunnies, under the refrigerator is a great place for pet hair and dust bunnies to hide
and you may need to clean the coils more often. I usually forget to clean the coils until my ice cubes do
not freeze solid and my ice cream is soft. That is a good indicator it is time to clean the coils.
Sure these are a few more things to add to the always long To-Do List but your appliances will operate
more efficiently and you never know what treasures are beneath your refrigerator or behind your dryer.
Happy Cleaning. Written By Sarah Schwinkendorf
|Whole House Mechanical, LLC
|Whole House Mechanical, LLC
1025 Hwy 212
Michigan City, IN 46360
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|Air Conditioning 101