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Air Conditioner Coils: What You Need To Know


Outdoor air conditioning unit

Air conditioner coils are an essential part of your system. They need to work to keep your home cool and comfortable during the hot months.

But what are air conditioner coils, and what do they do? Here’s a quick guide to everything you should know about your air conditioning system’s evaporator coils and how to maintain them.

AC Evaporator Coils

Air conditioning systems work a little bit differently from heating systems. Instead of creating cool air, air conditioning systems work by cooling the air that is in your home.

Inside your air conditioning system is refrigerant. This refrigerant works by absorbing the heat in your home and carrying that heat outside. Your system continues to pull the heat out of the air until the temperature matches the setting on your thermostat.

The AC evaporator coils absorb heat. The air conditioning systems fans pull the air across the coils. The coils cool the air by absorbing the heat. Then the air is recirculated through your home. 

If your air conditioning evaporator coils, sometimes called evaporator core, break, your home air conditioning system will stop absorbing heat. Your home will quickly become humid and uncomfortable.

Regular checkups and maintenance can keep your evaporator coils working properly.

Coil Cleaning 101

Clean air conditioning coils are important. Regular maintenance and cleaning keep them working correctly and efficiently. In fact, dirty coils can cause your air conditioning system to use up to 30% more energy to cool your home. Yikes!

Dirty air conditioning evaporator coils do more than just increase your energy costs. They also can cause:

  • Reduction in heat transfer
  • Frozen coils
  • The compressor to overheat

The first step in keeping your AC evaporator coils clean is regularly changing your air filter. Your air filter traps dust and particles that could otherwise get stuck on your coils. Reducing how much dust is in the air will keep your coils cleaner.

Since even a little bit of dust and dirt on your evaporator coils can reduce air conditioning systems working efficiency, scheduling routine maintenance will help you keep your system working well. Professional technicians will clean and service your entire AC system, so you’ll know that not only are your evaporator coils clean, but the rest of your system is also ready to cool your home too.

Broken Coils? Here’s What To Do

There are two common causes of broken air conditioner evaporator coils. First, the system’s vibration may slowly crack the joints in the tubing. These cracks allow refrigerant to escape. Second, volatile organic compounds found in our homes react with condensation and create formic acid. This acid erodes the coils, and eventually, the coils fail.

When you have a broken evaporator coil, you should turn off your system and call a professional service technician. The technician will help you determine if you should fix or replace your evaporator coils.

Typically, you can repair bent coils, but if corrosion caused damage to the coil, you might want to opt for a coil replacement. Once a coil corrodes, it can be much more cost-effective to replace it than repair it.

Signs Your AC Coils Are Broken

Since keeping your home cool during the summer is vital to your comfort and health, you should recognize the signs of a broken air conditioning evaporator coil. Here are some of the most common warning signs:

  • The air coming out of your vent is warmer than the set temperature on your thermostat.
  • Your air conditioning system starts and stops but does not cool your home.
  • Your air conditioning system does not turn on.
  • You notice loud, banging sounds from inside your system or vents.

If you think your air conditioning system has broken coils, call a service professional to help you figure out your options. An expert technician will be able to help you understand the problem and find solutions that meet your immediate needs and match your budget.

Choose Total Air & Heat for Your AC Needs

Maintaining and servicing your air conditioning evaporator coils will help you keep your air conditioning system working efficiently for years. Proper maintenance helps you get the most out of your investment and will ensure your home is cool and comfortable when the summer weather hits.

Total Air understands that you need your air conditioning system to work. With over 60 years of service, you can count on us to repair your system right the first time. In fact, we’re not comfortable until you are!

If you think your air conditioning system is not running as well as it should, contact us for an appointment today!

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