Homeowner’s Guide to Air Conditioning Parts

Homeowner’s Guide to Air Conditioning Parts

Whether in terms of purchasing a new air conditioning unit or maintaining your existing one, knowing the components of your AC can be quite helpful in getting the most out of it. While an HVAC contractor can repair any issues that may arise, it still makes sense for homeowners to know the main air conditioning parts. By familiarizing yourself with such, you can better maintain your home’s AC unit and be aware of any problems that may occur.

To help you in this endeavor, we’ve laid out some integral components of every air conditioning unit. Take a look with Applegate Home Comfort—your premier HVAC service provider in Michigan.

Air Conditioning Parts: Key Components

As you can imagine, there’s an exhaustive list of air conditioning parts necessary in helping the entire unit function. However, there are four main components every homeowner should be familiar with:

Evaporator (Coil)

The Evaporator coil, also known as the inside unit, is the portion of your AC that’s located inside (in contrast to the condenser). The coils chill the air, which is then blown into the home through ductwork. In more technical terms, the evaporator takes the liquid refrigerant and converts it into a gas to cool the air and distribute it.


Commonly known as the air conditioning unit or an outside unit, the condenser is the large component that sits outside of your home. Along with the condenser coil, this air conditioning part is responsible for converting evaporated refrigerant into a liquid. This is the “heat transfer” point—where warm air is pulled from the home and expelled.


The compressor works with the condenser in that it provides the necessary pressure in converting liquid refrigerant back to gas. As you can imagine, the compressor sits inside of the condenser.


In most air conditioning units, you’ll have to fans. The fan on your condenser (outside) works to cool the condenser as it expels hot air. In opposition, the fan inside cools the evaporator coil, which distributes cold air throughout the home.

Additional Air Conditioning Parts

The air conditioning parts listed above are the main components of most units. However, that’s not to say they are the only integral parts. Your home’s air conditioning unit utilizes several other important components to operate, and we’ve provided some others to become familiar with below:

  • Thermostat: The thermostats regulates the temperature inside your home. Once set to a specific temperature, the thermostat powers the AC unit on and off as needed to maintain the specified temp.
  • Condensate Drain: Responsible for expelling condensation (moisture) produced by the evaporator coil, the condensate drain is typically a PVC pipe coming from the evaporator to a floor drain.
  • Expansion Valve: This is necessary in removing pressure from the liquid refrigerant so it can then be converted into a gas in the evaporator.
  • Ductwork: Necessary for central AC units and heat pumps, ductwork is installed throughout the home to distribute cool air (heated air in winter).
  • Filters: The air filters throughout your home, which should be replaced every few months, do exactly that: filter air. They’ll trap contaminants in the air and help improve air quality—which is why they require replacement.

Have Questions About Your AC Unit? Call Applegate

As you can see, there are several working pieces to air conditioning units. In familiarizing yourself with the above parts, you’ll have a better idea of how your home’s AC operates, which can come in handy when issues arise. When issues do arise, however, you can simply call the experts at Applegate Home Comfort to take care of the problem. If you need assistance, give us a call at 517-337-7700.