Understanding The Core Functions Of A Car A/C Compressor

Understanding The Core Functions Of A Car A/C Compressor

Many people take for granted the miraculous power of the automobile. When they drive it daily, they rarely take the time to consider the many components that make it operate…..until something goes wrong. One of the most important of these is the car A/C compressor, a component which has revolutionized the industry.

Most mechanics will tell you that the compressor is your AC’s beating heart because without it you’d have fans which spin and blow out air but it wouldn’t be cold. The compressor is responsible for managing the refrigerant and can sense temperature changes within the vehicle and make the required adjustments as needed. Most late model vehicles come with advanced consoles which give drivers great control over this process.

What Is The Function Of The A/C Compressor?

The cool and refreshing air which comes from your car’s air conditioner is not the result of ice, but of warm gases which are extracted from the air. It is a process that involves multiple steps which take advantage of the laws of thermodynamics. Air compression plays a key role in this process. Whenever the AC is turned on, the compressor will activate, and as its name suggests, will compress the refrigerant, which will raise its temperature.

Next, the refrigerant will be transferred to the condenser, where its heat is dissipated. Now the refrigerant must pass within the dryer where its contaminants will be eliminated. After purification, the refrigerant will have its pressure removed as it moves within an expansion valve. Finally, it will enter an evaporator within the dashboard, where the refrigerant will become cold yet free of moisture. The resulting air that you feel on your skin coming from the vent results from the blower pushing it through the refrigerant.

What Is The Typical Lifespan Of An Air Compressor?

The lifespan of an air compressor varies, depending on the car it is installed in, the components used in its manufacture and how frequently the air conditioning is used. Most warranties last from one to two years, but air compressors themselves will typically last much longer than this if cared for properly. Generally speaking, air compressors will outlast other car components, because whereas the A/C is primarily used during summer, most car components are used all year round. Furthermore, the compressor doesn’t have the same vulnerabilities which are inherent in other components, since it doesn’t use a lot of moving parts.

How Frequently Should A Compressor Be Subject To Maintenance?

An A/C system is measured based on its ability to keep passengers cool. If a breeze emitted from it lasting only a couple of minutes is enough to cool down the car, even during the hottest summer temperatures, then the air compressor is in excellent condition. Unlike other car components, which should be annually inspected to catch problems long before they arise, the air compressor should only be addressed after the functioning of the A/C becomes compromised.