Air-cooled chillers rely on a condenser cooled by the environment air. Thus, air-cooled chillers may find common application in smaller or medium installations where space constraints may exist. An air-cooled chiller can represent the most practical choice in scenarios where water represents a scarce resource.
A typical air-cooled chiller can feature propeller fans or mechanical refrigeration cycles to draw ambient air over a finned coil to condense the refrigerant. The condensation of the refrigerant vapor in the air-cooled condenser enables the transfer of heat to the atmosphere.
Air-cooled chillers offer the significant advantage of lower installation costs. Simpler maintenance also results due to their relative simplicity as compared to water-cooled chillers. Air-cooled chillers will occupy less space, but will mostly reside outside a facility. Thus, the outdoor elements will compromise their functional lifespan.
The all-inclusive nature of air-cooled chillers reduces maintenance costs. Their relative simplicity coupled with reduced space requirements produces great advantages in many types of installations.