Expansion Valve Basics

expansion valve

The air conditioning or AC system of your car consists of several components. One of these is none other than the orifice tube, more popularly called the expansion valve. Just like other parts of the AC system, even the smallest failure or malfunction of this valve can prevent proper cooling of the cabin. 

Naturally, if your AC system doesn’t cool properly because of a faulty valve, your vehicle will become extremely uncomfortable. Once this happens, you need to fix the issue as soon as possible. 

What is the Expansion Valve?

The tiny metering device found between the AC compressor and the AC evaporator is called the expansion valve. The main function and purpose of this valve is to regulate the refrigerant as it flows it into the evaporator where it absorbs heat and cools the air circulated within the car. 

expansion valve is a component of the car AC system
The expansion valve is a significant component of the car AC system. An expansion valve manages how much refrigerant liquid goes through the air conditioning system. If you need to replace it, you can get it at car parts online.

The Function of Expansion Valves 

You need to get some idea of how the AC system of your car works so that you can understand better the role of the expansion valve. All car AC systems use refrigerant as the primary heat transfer mechanism to get rid of the heat from the cabin. The process begins at the device known as the compressor. 

The moment the engine is turned on and the AC system starts running, the compressor will then pressurize and distribute the vapour refrigerant into the system. Once the refrigerant leaves the compressor, it will enter the radiator-type device known as the condenser. 

The video explains how the expansion valve works

The condenser will then transfer a certain amount of heat to the atmosphere from the refrigerant. The refrigerant will also turn into a liquid form the moment it reaches the condenser. 

The liquid refrigerant with its high pressure will then enter a restriction. This restriction reduces the refrigerant’s pressure and meters this into the next component of the system, which is another radiator-type device called the evaporator core. 

Depending on the particular design of the system, the restriction will be either an expansion valve or an orifice tube. If it uses an expansion valve, a diaphragm inside the valve will function with a mechanism that can sense temperature to regulate the specific rate at which the refrigerant will get into the evaporator core. 

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