Chapter 1 Page 2
The condensing coil (condenser) is typically made from steel tubing and is installed outside of the refrigerator compartment. This coil is responsible for getting rid of the heat that the refrigerant absorbs in the evaporator. Several designs have been used over the years.
Static condensers rely on air convection to cool the refrigerant. They hang on the back of the refrigerator where the tubing is exposed to air currents. Hot refrigerant vapor enters the top of the coil and warms the tubing and the air that surrounds it. Warm air rises and is replaced by cooler air. This cooler air absorbs heat from the coil and rises. The cycle repeats. This action pulls heat away from the coil and cools the refrigerant.
Static condensers were very popular until the advent of the forced air condenser.
The most common condensing coil configuration in use today is the forced air condenser. A fan directs air across the coil to help cool the refrigerant as it travels through the tubing. Forced air condensers are typically located on the underside of the refrigerator cabinet.
The advantage of utilizing a forced air condenser is that this design allows the consumer to instalI the refrigerator in a restricted area such as an alcove. Since the fan directs air across the condenser, there is no need to allow room around the refrigerator for air convection to occur.
Both chest and upright Freezers, and some imported refrigerators utilize a condenser that is buried in the cabinet foam and is staked to the exterior metal cabinet (similar to cold wall evaporators). As with static condensers, warm wall condensers rely on air currents around the cabinet exterior to cool the coil. As a result, these units cannot be enclosed in an area where air movement is restricted. The advantage of the warm wall condensers is that while cooling fans are not needed, there is no unsightly coil hanging from the back of the unit as there is with a static condenser.