You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

You are in Phoenix. We also have a Tucson site.

Cool 101: What Is an AC Condenser?

April 11, 2022

Honestly, we love explaining the parts of an air conditioner to our customers. Let’s start with the basics and then drilldown to the most important part -- namely, the condenser!

Air Conditioning Basics

First, we must explain how an air conditioner works. If you already know, feel free to skip reading this section, but we want to make sure to provide a full explanation!

The first thing that happens is, the air that is too warm inside your home gets sucked through the return. Your air conditioner’s job is to eliminate the heat from this air and return the cooler air back into your home. First, this air goes to the evaporator coil, which is inside your house, and the refrigerant in these coils absorbs the excess heat.

This refrigerant can’t just stay hot! For it to cool down, it moves outside to the AC compressor and does exactly what the name says. It compresses the refrigerant, creating pressure and a chemical reaction that makes the refrigerant release the heat. That heat goes into the condenser, which cools that refrigerant gas down even more.

Meanwhile, now you’ve got refrigerant that can go back inside your home, and absorb more heat, in an endless cycle. That’s how your AC works! A lot of people mistakenly believe that an AC system works by “creating” coldness. However, that’s not exactly accurate. Instead, it’s removing heat.

Condensers Explained

As we said, the AC condenser is part of the outdoor unit. The compressor, condenser, and fan are all parts of the outdoor unit. The condenser is basically the system of coils that helps cool off the refrigerant gas. The condenser includes metal fins that also remove heat. These metal fins are what you see on the outside of your AC unit.

Condenser Coil Care

The condenser is a very important part of your AC system! To some extent you can take care of it, and keep it clean, by yourself. You can use a garden hose sprayer to clean debris off the condenser coils/fins.

But it’s a good idea to have the professionals from Parker & Sons do the real cleaning, which not only helps the condenser to function better, but the entire system to be more efficient!

We’re happy to give your AC system a tune-up and do some “spring cleaning” of the condenser as part of that. 

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