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Do You Know How Your Air Conditioning System Works?


Arguably the most important invention of the 20th century, your home air conditioning system is a gift sent down from the heavens during the summer heat. Located in Cherry Hill, NJ, we here at Hutchinson know how rough summers along the East Coast can be. As a leading provider of air conditioning services in Gloucester and the surrounding areas, we go to great lengths to keep homes cool all summer long.

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While almost everyone has a form of an air conditioning system in their home, not everyone knows exactly how they work. In fact, the majority of homeowners will admit they have no clue how their air conditioner is made. If you happen to be one those people, we’re to help. Don’t worry, we’ll make sure it is in layman’s terms!


To make it as simple as possible, think of your air conditioner not as a machine that pumps cold air into your home, but rather a machine that removes/pushes hot air out. Broken down into five different components, each component works together to remove heat and provide cooling. These parts consist of refrigerant, a condenser, compressor, expansion valve, and evaporator coil.

While there are many different forms of air conditioning systems, the physics and make up of each type will more than likely remain the same.


Think of the refrigerant as the most important aspect of your unit. Refrigerant changes from gas vapor to liquid as it collects hot air from your home. Since the substance has a very low boiling point, refrigerant changes from a liquid to a vapor at low temperatures. The end result is your system being able to run without generating a lot of heat.


Since refrigerant is the most important part, the part that holds/stores the refrigerant would have to be the second most important, right? That brings us to the compressor. The compressor pumps the refrigerant through the entire unit in a big cooper loop.


After hot air is gathered in the compressor, the hot vapor moves to the condenser. The condenser cools the refrigerant as it passes through the unit. A fan then blows air over the thin metal fins in the condenser to speed the cooling of the vapor. The compressor, condenser coil, and condenser fan can be found in the big bulky unit in your side or backyard a.k.a the thing that makes a ton of noise!

Expansion Valve

While the listed parts above are vital to cooling a home, the expansion valve is the part that actually cools your home. When the hot liquid refrigerant passes through a tiny opening in the valve on one side, it is pushed out as a cool mist on the other.

Evaporator Coil

The final part needed to cool your home, the evaporator coil, is used to disperse the cold air throughout the home. The cold air that leaves the expansion valve runs through the evaporator coil that is found in the plenum. (The plenum is the metal box between the furnace and the ductwork.)

With over 50 years of being in business, it should be no surprise to anyone that we at Hutchinson have grown to become the best air conditioning repair company in Gloucester and its surrounding areas. Those in need of any air conditioning repair or installation can reach out to us today at 866-953-8728.