Some air conditioners (ACs) have an inbuilt heat element with the thermostat that can be set for a temperature up to 32 degrees Celcius. When you turn on the “Heat” mode, the room air conditioner delivers warm air to combat the chilly weather outside. To access this feature, press the mode button until you reach the desired option. Now, set the temperature on the thermostat and enjoy the warm environment in your home. With the cooling function, the coils might freeze in the winter time and lead to a system breakdown and increased maintenance charges.
So, how does the system work? How can a cooling mechanism generate heat inside your home? Technically speaking, the AC has a heat pump that is a device used to move heat from one place to another. In HVAC language, the heat pump is a single device that can be used to heat and cool the same space. If you are aware of the process of cooling, the cycle for the heating is the exact opposite to ensure that cold air is expelled and the hot air stays indoors.
What is the refrigeration cycle?
The concept can give you a better insight into the workings of the vapour-compression in the system. The chemical refrigerant takes thermal energy (heat) from one part of the unit to another before realising the same outside. There are four components that work together to make this happen – the compressor, the condenser, the expansion valve, and the evaporator.
- Compressor: The compressor applies high pressure on the refrigerant or eco-friendly coolant and transforms it into a hot, high-pressure gas for the condenser.
- Condenser: The condenser is a coiled tube. The refrigerant moves through the tube and expels heat into the external environment. Once it cools, the refrigerant turns into a liquid and enters the expansion valve.
- Expansion valve: The valve lowers the pressure and transforms the refrigerant into a liquid state for the evaporator.
- Evaporator: The component is a long coil as well. Inside the coil, the refrigerant is converted into a gaseous state. As it begins to evaporate, it takes the heat from the air for energy for the conversion process. Once the gas absorbs this heat, cool air is produced and expelled into the room.
How does AC work as a heater?
The process is reversed in the case of the “Heat” mode with the use of the reversing valve. It reverses the flow of heat (thermal energy) through a heat pump. In the heating mode, the reversing valve is inverted and the refrigerant flows in the opposite direction. The condenser coils transform into the cold evaporator coils and vice versa. The unit now expels cold air outside and pumps warm air into your room.
Is the heat pump better than an actual space heater?
The heat pump facility provides increased energy savings for your household. In addition, it is an economic and eco-friendly option that consumes less electricity. There is a scientific reason behind this. The resistance heaters convert the energy to heat by passing electricity through the resistor. It consumes a large amount of energy to heat the entire room. The heat pump uses natural properties of thermal dynamics to shift heat from one area to another. The electricity is used only for the compressor and fans.
If you are looking to compare different AC variants and products, head over to an online store such as the EMI store on Finserv Markets. The portal offers deals, discounts and easy financing options on your new air conditioner with zero down payment. You can even opt for same-day delivery as an added layer of convenience. It is important to note that the portable AC unit needs to be vented outside on the cooling and heating mode. In the heating mode, the unit will continue to work to remove excess humidity. If the environment is extremely cold, the AC could be less effective as it tries to shift heat from one part of the room to another. In this case, you can use the existing heat from a furnace with the AC to recycle the air inside your room and maintain the temperature. With these immense benefits, your home air conditioner can provide you with year-round comfort.