Air Conditioning 101: What Does Aircon Piping Do?

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What is Air Conditioning Piping?

Air conditioning piping refers to the copper tubing that makes up the refrigerant lines. AC units often use copper pipes for the refrigerant lines as these conduct temperatures well, and do not react with the liquid or gas refrigerant. All cooling systems have refrigerant piping, as it is an essential component of HVAC systems.

Also called refrigerant piping, these AC lines come in low-pressure and high-pressure lines that heat or subcool refrigerant through the heat exchanger. The high-pressure lines are also called liquid lines, where refrigerant in its liquid state passes through the condenser coils to the evaporator coils.

Low-pressure lines, on the other hand, transport refrigerant in its gaseous state from the evaporator to the condenser coils. These lines undergo heat exchange to transfer thermal heat to the refrigerant without direct contact.

Air conditioning piping may also refer to water pipes. These are made with plastic or silicone materials to prevent rust, and allow the condensation from the air conditioning unit to flow into a collection tray, also called the drip tray.

Besides copper tubing, AC lines may be made of polyethylene, which is commonly used in transporting water and non-reactive substances around the air conditioning system. Air conditioners may also use other materials as well, but the copper pipe is the most-frequently used type of AC tubing.

The Importance of Air Conditioning Piping System

Air conditioner pipes are important in the functionality of the cooling system. These copper pipes transport refrigerant through the system, heating and cooling the substance as it goes. The process is what lowers the temperature of the surrounding air, which is then delivered back into the room through the blower fan.

Proper maintenance of the piping system is a must for all AC units. These pipes are subject to varying temperatures and pressures, and can easily leak when improperly maintained. Homeowners will need to ensure the proper installation of their AC lines as well, since faulty installation can lead to malfunction and damage to the AC unit.

Diagnosing Faulty or Leaking Piping Systems

#1 Leaking Refrigerant Piping

Leaking refrigerant is an urgent concern as coolant can be harmful to the health when ingested, inhaled, or in contact. The liquid line and suction line in a piping system carries refrigerant throughout the unit, and cracks in these pipes can cause the refrigerant to leak out into the room.

Leaking refrigerant may have a sweet chloroform smell, which has a chemical-like scent. If you notice this smell in the room, immediately shut off the air conditioning unit, and contact an HVAC technician to find and fix the leak. Ventilate the room to avoid inhaling coolant.

#2 AC Unit Not Cooling

Another symptom of leaking refrigerant is an AC unit that is not cooling. Processing refrigerant is what creates low temperature air that blows into the room, so when the coolant leaks out, the air conditioning unit cannot properly cool the air. There may be inadequate refrigerant within the AC system, or the refrigerant lines are clogged.

An experienced HVAC technician should be able to find and fix any leaks in your air conditioning piping system. This is done by placing a dye in the refrigerant lines, and following the colorant towards the leak.

#3 AC Unit Not Blowing Cold Air

If your AC unit is not blowing cold air at all, then you may not have enough refrigerant in your AC system. This also points to a refrigerant leak problem as the leak has depleted your refrigerant supply.

Air Conditioner Piping Maintenance

Air conditioners need routine maintenance when it comes to keeping its components up and running smoothly. Having your air conditioner cleaned and inspected by a licensed HVAC technician at least once every 4 to 6 months is the key to keeping the piping system intact, and will prevent problems like rusted pipes, leaks, and weak spots.

Luce Aircon is your leading partner for all your air conditioner needs! Our knowledgeable technicians can clean, inspect, maintain, and repair your air conditioning system. We have decades' worth of experience with various air conditioner models and brands across Singapore, so you know we'll get the job done right!

Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.

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