Different types of refrigerator compressors include the piston compressor, rotary compressor, scroll compressor, screw compressor and centrifugal compressor. These compressors are used for air conditioning and refrigeration purposes, such as water coolers, refrigerators and freezers. The use of each compressor depends on the unit's size and application.
The rotary compressor uses two rotating elements, such as gears, to compress the refrigerant between the elements. Screw compressors have a pair of screws or rotors that compress the refrigerant by meshing together. Scroll compressors simultaneously push two offset spiral disks to compress the refrigerant. A centrifugal compressor uses an impeller wheel and rotating action to exert centrifugal force on the refrigerant in a chamber.