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The condensing unit (sometimes incorrectly referred to as compressor) is usually located outside. Its main function is that of a heat exchanger, in which it condenses a substance (refrigerant) from it's gaseous to liquid state. From there, the latent heat is given up by the substance, and will transfer to the condenser coolant. In the refrigeration cycle, a heat pump transfers heat from a low temperature heat source into a higher temperature heat sink. Heat naturally flows in the opposite direction because of the second law of thermodynamics. The most common of the refrigeration cycles uses an electric motor to drive a compressor (located inside the condensing unit). Because evaporation occurs when heat is absorbed, and condensation occurs when heat is released, air conditioners are designed to use a compressor to cause pressure changes between two compartments, and actively pump refrigerant around. Inside the condenser, the refrigerant vapor is compressed and forced through a heat exchange coil, condensing it into a liquid and rejecting the heat previously absorbed from the cool indoor area. The condenser's heat exchanger is generally cooled by a fan blowing outside air through it.

The 2-Stage Condenser

This condensing unit offers one of the highest operating efficiencies possible and whisper quiet operation. The two-stage condenser works as follows: During off-peak times, including morning and evening times in the summer, the unit will typically run in low-stage approximately 70% lower capacity. This offers greater, cost-efficiency and allows the unit to cycle long enough to properly dehumidify the home. During peak load times the unit will cycle into high-stage to maintain the temperature set point. For aggressive humidity control and during high demand periods, the units will be able to produce high speed cooling using the full tonnage. These condensing units used in conjunction with our custom, two-stage evaporator coils offer maximum cooling and dehumidification in both low and high-stage operation.

What's inside

The below diagram is to provide an example of what the inside of a 2-stage condensing unit would look like. Specialty parts and features vary depending on make and model of the condenser, but their basic functions are the same. For more information on the different technologies available, please visit our manufacturer brand page by clicking · · here · ·. View the brands we carry and visit each of their websites to read more about the features unique to their products.


Further Reading

How the Condensing Unit Works Click on any of the subjects below to learn more.