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The Difference Between Condenser and Cooler

Dec. 19, 2023

Today, both condensers and coolers are very important heat exchange components in commercial or industrial refrigeration equipment and are widely used in many applications. Many customers are curious about the difference between a condenser and a cooler. 

There are four differences between the condenser and the cooler in the design. The first is whether there is a phase change, the second is the difference in heat transfer coefficient, and the third is the series heat exchanger. Fourthly whether there is a liquid level control port. Today the chiller supplier will talk about this aspect.

1. With or without phase change

The condenser will condense the gas phase and transform it into a liquid phase. The cooling water of the cooler only cools, there is no phase change, just a pure temperature change; in addition, the cooling medium they use is also different. The purpose is also different. The cooler is used to cool the material without phase change. The condenser is used to cool and condense the gas phase with phase change.

 -30degree Low Temperature Water Cooled Chiller

-30degree Low Temperature Water Cooled Chiller

2. The difference in heat transfer coefficient

Generally speaking, since the heat transfer film coefficient of the condensation process is much greater than that of the cooling process without phase change, the total heat transfer coefficient of the condenser is generally much larger than that of the simple cooling process, sometimes by an order of magnitude. Condensers are generally used to cool gas into the liquid. Condensers generally have a very hot shell. The concept of coolers is relatively broad. It mainly refers to a kind of heat exchange that converts the hot-cold medium to room temperature or a lower temperature.


3. Series heat exchanger

In addition, when two heat exchangers are connected in series, under the same mass flow rate, since the latent heat is much higher than the sensible heat, and the heat exchanger type is the same, the larger heat exchange area is the condenser, that is The larger one should be the condenser.

 Air Cooled Scroll Chiller

Air Cooled Scroll Chiller

4. Availability of liquid level control ports

Intercoolers have level gauges and level control ports, whereas condensers do not. For the intercooler, the gas inlet and outlet are located at the top of the vessel and the tube diameters are basically the same size.


However, the outlet of the condenser is located at the bottom of the vessel, and its outlet pipe diameter differs greatly from the pipe diameter. The ammonia inlet and outlet of the intercooler are located at the bottom of the vessel, while the condenser is not. The inlet and outlet of the vertical condenser are located at the top and bottom, while the horizontal condenser is located at one end of the vessel.


In short, if a phase change occurs internally, the condenser is a condenser, otherwise it is a cooler. The gas enters the condenser from the top of the shell, creating a condensing surface area, and the gas also collects at the top, so baffles are placed left and right to extend the residence time of the condensate and to cool it continuously. 

For coolers, baffles will be installed at the top and bottom after the raw material has been delivered to the interior to allow the coolant to fill the entire cooler and make full use of the heat exchanger area. More commercial cooling equipment, high-efficiency air-cooled chiller, best water cooled chiller, and more here! Welcome to contact us today or request a quote. 

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