Question: What Are the Main Components of a Mechanical Refrigeration System or Air Conditioner?


Answer - There are 4 basic components to an air conditioner, or any mechanical refrigeration system. First, there are the coils, an indoor coil called an evaporator, and an outdoor coil called a condenser. These work in conjunction with the compressor and a metering device.

Refrigerant systems need a fluid. One that many people are familiar with is referred to as “freon”, or “puron”. These names are brand names for types of refrigerants, sort of like calling tissue paper Kleenex. Refrigerants depend on their chemical composition and properties. Some common types are R-12, R-22, R-500, R-502, and one of the newest more environmentally safer refrigerants R-410a, which many call Puron.

All these refrigerants can both exist as a gas and liquid and as a mixture of both. Refrigerant moves through all these components in order to remove heat from the area that is being air conditioner. No matter what type of air conditioner one is dealing with the order of this flow is always the same.

Go Back to Introduction to Air Conditioning

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