Last week on the blog, we talked about how helpful it can be to address issues with your air conditioning system in the fall, when issues are still on your mind after a long summer. When it comes to the functioning of your air conditioning system, the copper refrigerant lines that run between the condenser and the evaporator coil play an essential role. The larger of the two lines — known as the suction line — carries a cool gas, so it must be insulated with tubing. Read on to learn how the quality of this insulation can affect your HVAC system.
Protecting Copper Refrigerant Lines with Insulation
There are a few key problems that are associated with refrigerant line insulation, so it is essential to choose refrigerant tubing insulation that addresses these concerns. If you’re looking for tubing insulation for copper refrigerant lines, make sure it offers adequate protection against the following threats:
- Condensation. Whether your copper lines are located indoors or outdoors, the copper line will likely be exposed to air that is warmer than the refrigerant that it carries. When warm air hits the cool copper line, it can lead to condensation. If your insulation does not provide an adequate barrier between the air and the copper line, it can create a moist, humid atmosphere within the insulation tube that is an excellent breeding ground for mold. Therefore, you should look for insulation with a closed-cell structure that prevents warm outside air from reaching the copper line.
- Energy loss. Keeping the refrigerant in the suction line at a cool temperature is essential for maintaining the efficiency of the air conditioning system. The insulation basically acts like a thermos that keeps the refrigerant cool. If the refrigerant is exposed to warm outside air, more energy will be needed to keep it at the appropriate temperature. Again, choosing tubing insulation with a closed-cell structure can effectively guard against this problem and help keep your energy bills low.
- Ultraviolet radiation. If your copper line is located outdoors, it is essential to choose insulation that provides adequate protection against ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Even if the insulation is well-structured to prevent thermal energy losses and protect against condensation, long-term UV radiation can degrade the surface of the insulation and put your copper lines at risk. In order to avoid this hazard, you should look for tubing insulation that has been treated with a finish that is designed specifically to protect against surface degradation from UV exposure.
If you’re looking for high-quality copper refrigerant tubing insulation, National Air Warehouse has what you need. We offer six-foot length tubing with both 7/8” and 3/4” inside diameters. Contact us today to learn more about our offerings!