You may have heard it said that the condenser coils of your air conditioning system should remain clean at all times.
Have you ever thought about what condenser coils are, and why and how they should be kept clean? HVAC experts feel that homeowners must be educated on the ill effects of dirty condenser coils and the importance of keeping them clean.
What Are Condenser Coils?
There are three important components of an air conditioner:
- Compressor – a pump that pressurizes the refrigerant causing an increase in temperature. The hot and high pressure refrigerant then travels to the condenser.
- Evaporator coil – the inside cold coil
- Condenser coil – releases the heat outside, causing the refrigerant to cool off. The cool refrigerant then travels back inside through the evaporator coil. The warm air inside the house comes in contact with the cold refrigerant, becomes cold, and is circulated through the vents.
The problem begins when the condenser becomes dirty. With a layer of dirt on it, the condenser coil would not be able to overcome heat properly. This would result in inefficient cooling and higher energy consumption.
What Problems Do Dirty Condenser Coils Cause?
- The biggest impact of dirty condenser coils is on the cooling efficiency of your air conditioner. Due to dirty coils, the refrigerant would not be cooled adequately to produce cool air for your home. HVAC experts feel that dirty condenser coils bring down the cooling efficiency by about 30 percent.
- Dirty condenser coils means that the system will have to work harder and longer to match the thermostat setting. This can make your air conditioning system prone to breakdowns and can reduce its life considerably.
- The air conditioner consumes much more energy but does not cool properly. According to some HVAC experts, dirty condenser coils cause the air conditioner to consume 30 percent more energy.
How Can You Get the Dirty Condenser Coils Cleaned?
Cleaning condenser coils may not seem like rocket science, and many homeowners think that they can do it on their own. However, it is impossible to reach the innermost curves and crevices and only a professional HVAC company with the right kind of equipment and procedures can clean the coils effectively. It is best to schedule a cleaning before the cooling season so as to ward off all potential problems.
If your home is not cooling adequately and your energy bills are flaring up for no apparent reason, you have every reason to suspect that dirty condenser coils might be the culprit. To clean the coils, schedule an appointment with Air Excellence Heating and Cooling at (636) 980-0998.
Photo credit: A Yee via Flickr