Inverter technology — a key component of VRF/VRV HVAC systems.

VRF/VRV is an exciting development in HVAC technology that allows for precise temperature control and impressive energy savings. One of the key components of this type of system is the inverter driven compressor.

Most air conditioning compressors use single speed motors that only operate in two modes — on or off. These units have the telltale “thud” that you hear when system kicks in. When they are running, they go full speed at 100% power until the desired temperature is achieved, then as suddenly as it started, it switches off. Inverter technology has changed all that and allows for precise regulation of the compressor output.

Technically speaking, inverter driven units have a variable frequency drive which contains an electrical inverter to control the speed of the of the unit, which in turn controls cooling output. The variable frequency drive converts the incoming AC current, converts it to DC, and then through modulation within the inverter produces the desired amount of current to run the unit at the exact speed necessary to reach a desired temperature in the most efficient manner.

What does that all mean?

Well, let’s say the room you want to cool is currently 78 degrees and you want to reduce the temperature 3 degrees to 75. With a traditional unit, you will hear the loud click/thud of the compressor kicking in, and it will run full blast until the room reaches 75. The second it hits the desired temperature, it will switch off, and the second it goes above 75, it will kick in again at 100% power.

With an inverter driven compressor, the unit will switch on quietly and run at various speeds, efficiently adjusting output until the room reaches 75 degrees. From there it will continually adjust to maintain room temperature. This eliminates the energy consuming all on/all off cycles of traditional units and virtually eliminates temperature fluctuations. It also increases the longevity of the system because it reduces the wear and tear associated with the constant on/off switching of traditional units.

To learn more about VRF/VRV and inverter driven technology, speak to an experienced HVAC professional.

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