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Serving Orange County

- SINCE 1981 -

Serving Orange County

- SINCE 1981 -


Hours: Monday-Friday 7:30-5:30PM
Saturday: 8:00-1:00PM


Saddleback Plumbing Heating & Air Blog

The Role Refrigerant Plays in Your Air Conditioner

With most of us using air conditioners on an almost daily basis during the summer, it’s important to keep an eye out for problems with your system. One of the biggest problems that air conditioners face is refrigerant leaks, which can cause all sorts of problems and eventually lead to a breakdown. In order to understand this problem, you have to first know the role that refrigerant plays in your air conditioner. Let’s take a closer look at what refrigerant actually does, and why it’s so important to the system.


Every air conditioner is installed with a set amount of refrigerant, which it uses for its entire lifespan. The refrigerant is evaporated in one part of the air conditioner to absorb heat from the air, then it is condensed in the outer unit to vent the heat out of the house. This is how your air conditioner actually cools your home. The important thing to remember is that refrigerant is never meant to be consumed, merely recycled back and forth through the system. This makes refrigerant leaks a very big problem.

Problems Related to Refrigerant Leaks

Once a leak forms in the refrigerant line, it will start to drain the system of refrigerant. Low refrigerant levels can cause a wide variety of issues with the air conditioner, such as the evaporator coil freezing over or the compressor breaking down. These are often the first signs that homeowners notice, as they are more apparent than the actual refrigerant leak. If you look closely enough, though, you can actually notice a refrigerant leak itself. If you see liquid dripping from your air conditioner, or if a part of the refrigerant line seems especially dirty or oily, you very likely have a refrigerant leak.

If you think your air conditioner has a refrigerant leak, call Saddleback Plumbing. We repair air conditioners throughout Orange County, CA.

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