The Parts of Your Air Conditioner

Your air conditioning unit is really an exceptional machine. However, the idea of cooling air in the interior of our building in order to improve our comfort by removing heat and moisture from the air has been around for a long time. Since prehistoric times, ice and snow were brought indoors for this purpose and ice harvesting, or the process where ice was stored for use in the summer, has been around since the late 17th century.

The ancient Egyptians used a very similar process to modern air conditioning. They hung reed plants in the windows, which they then poured water down. As the hot desert air in Egypt evaporated the water, the wind would blow and push the cooler air from the evaporation process into homes. This also would humidify the air, which can be beneficial to people’s health, especially when you’re sick. The Chinese were using fans since the beginning of the 2nd century AD.

As technology continued to build, so too did the air conditioning process. Evaporation was the main source of cooled air throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. However, it wasn’t until 1902 that the first modern air conditioner was invented in the United States. The breakthrough was simple really, looking back on it. Instead of sending air through hot coils, air was sent through cold coils instead. This process cooled the air and allowed the moisture content in the air to be controlled — which ironically was the whole reason for this invention.

Boyd Brothers Services is an air conditioning service company in Punta Gorda. We provide AC repair, AC maintenance, and air conditioning replacement services to keep you cool during the hot and humid summer months in Florida. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the main components of your air conditioning unit in order to understand how this seemingly innocuous piece of machinery has become essential to modern living. Contact us today!


Your modern air conditioner uses chemicals (most likely Freon) to cool your air. Your AC unit converts gas to a liquid and then back again, which then transfers hot air out of your home. There are three main components of your air conditioning unit. They are the compressor, condenser, and the evaporator.

  1. Compressor. Located on the outside of your home, the compressor takes the refrigerant that enters as a gas. As you may have guessed by its name, the compressor then takes this gas and squeezes it, raising its temperature and energy. This hot gas next moves to the condenser. The outside of your air conditioning unit has what appears to be metal fins on it. The sole purpose of these is to get rid of the heat from the inside of your AC unit more quickly.
  2. Condenser. Again, the name of the condenser describes what goes on in this component of your air conditioning unit. The gas is condensed into a liquid and is much cooler, and then makes its way to the evaporator.
  3. Evaporator. The fluid from the condenser is forced through a tiny opening into the evaporator. This small space causes the fluid’s pressure to drop. The fluid then begins to evaporate back into a gas, which removes the heat from the surrounding air. The heat is what separates the molecules so it can become gas again. The metal fins also contribute to this process. The refrigerant leaves the evaporator as a low-pressure, chilled gas, travels back to the compressor to repeat this process all over again. A fan connected to the evaporator is what distributes this cooled air into your home. The ductwork is the delivery system, both bringing in cool air from your AC unit and transferring hot air from your home to the AC unit to be cooled.
  4. Thermostat. The thermostat is the brain of this operation. It’s whole job is to sense the temperature of the surrounding air. When the air temperature reaches the set temperature, the thermostat switches your AC unit off. When the thermostat senses a rise in temperature, it switches the air conditioning back on. All of this happens without you having to think about it.

Air conditioning is a great invention of the Industrial Age. It keeps us cool during the hot summer months and helps to prevent heat stroke from excessively hot temperatures, which can lead to deaths.


When you partner with Boyd Brothers Services in Punta Gorda, we will inspect your AC unit to make sure it is functioning properly. We also install air conditioning units. As you’ve learned, ductwork is essential for the flow of air into and out of your home for both the air conditioning and your heating. By keeping it clean, you can keep your AC unit and heating system working efficiently and properly, without worry of any debris being spewn about your house or infecting your AC or heating system, causing problems and damage.

The key to keeping both your air conditioning and heating system running all year long when you need it is maintenance services. You need your ductwork cleaned at least once a year, and you should have both your furnace and your AC unit inspected once a year as well, preferably before you turn your system on for the season.

Boyd Brothers Services in Punta Gorda can help. For all your HVAC needs, call us today!