The commercial HVAC system is composed of numerous components. Each of these components contributes to the overall system’s performance. Commercial HVAC systems are typically found in office buildings, shopping malls, and retail establishments. The unit is composed of numerous components that work in concert to ensure peak performance. If one component develops a problem that goes unobserved, it can cascade the entire system, resulting in its failure. The building will become either freezing or scorching, impairing employee productivity and customer comfort. As a result, you must understand how the various components of the system work to identify mechanical issues early on before they ramp up into significant problems. The following are the main commercial HVAC parts.
The compressor is the core of any HVAC unit, as it circulates refrigerant between the condenser and evaporator coils via closed loops. It is typically located outside and performs the critical function of converting the refrigerant to the required state. Low-pressure gaseous refrigerant enters the compressor. This compartment’s motors will compress the refrigerant, increasing its temperature and pressure. After that, the hot refrigerant pushes its way through the condenser.
A condenser is an open-air unit that serves as the air conditioning unit’s heat exchanger. It primarily serves to transfer heat from the building to the outdoors. It comprises a network of pipes and a fan that draws air from across coils and facilitates heat transfer.
- Air Conditioner
A commercial HVAC system’s air conditioner is like a residential unit. Its primary function is to remove heat from the air, transfer it to the outside, and recirculate cold air throughout the house. Additionally, the air conditioner dehumidifies the building.
The thermostat is connected to the HVAC system via special wires and oversees the unit’s operation. It instructs the system to generate either cool or hot air in response to the set temperature. The temperature sensor on the thermostat determines if the heating system and air conditioner should indeed be turned on or off.
- Thermal Expansion Valve
This is a critical step in the air conditioning process because it allows the liquid refrigerant to enlarge. The refrigerant then vaporizes and tends to flow into the evaporator coils. When the refrigerant enters the expansion valve, it is typically very hot, but the decrease in pressure allows it to exit at its coldest temperature. The thermal expansion valve can be installed either inside the air handler or at the front of the evaporator coils.
- Air Handler
The air handler is equipped with a blower responsible for distributing air all through the house. Additionally, it contains the evaporator coil, which is filled with chilled refrigerant from the compressor. The blower extracts hot air from the structure and directs it across the evaporator coil. The refrigerant then absorbs heat from the air, reverts to its gas state, and goes back to the compressor.
- Terminal Units
The terminal unit is an air handling device that controls the amount of conditioned air that enters various zones throughout a building. The coils, blowers, and filters are all included in the unit. The filter’s primary function is to filter out dirt and other airborne contaminants.
Chillers can be used as the cooling element of a large building’s HVAC unit. Chillers can be either air- or water-cooled, but also their primary purpose is to remove the heat from the liquid flowing through pipes in a structure. Condenser coils on air-cooled chillers are allowed to cool by fan-driven air. Typically, the unit is located outside.
The heating system operates oppositely to the cooling system. The heating process starts with the thermostat signaling the furnace. To generate heat, a gas valve is opened and ignites the burner. It then passes through the heat exchanger, which converts the heat to the air. The furnace’s internal fan and motor will then force the heated air into the ductwork. The blower is responsible for distributing air throughout the various rooms.
- Duct System
Ductwork distributes cooled or heated air throughout a building’s rooms and returns unconditioned air to the HVAC system. This component cannot be overlooked, as it influences the productivity of the HVAC unit.