The Cause Of Frozen AC Units

When your air conditioner is functioning properly, it will operate efficiently. New air conditioning units are expected to operate efficiently right from the get-go. Over time, the operational efficiency begins to deplete for many reasons. This is where maintenance comes into play. Routinely maintained air conditioning systems are guaranteed to operate efficiently between services. Contrary to belief, partial and full malfunctions can occur without a moment’s notice. For example, the evaporator coil will begin to freeze when the airflow is decreased or stopped. There is generally very little warning before the evaporator coil freezes. Knowing the signs of a frozen evaporator coil will put you one step ahead in the diagnostic and repair processes. Learn more by reading the content provided in the article below.

What Factors Lead To A Frozen Air Conditioner Evaporator Coil?

Knowing the contributors of a frozen evaporator coil is crucial for every user. Even if you reside in a rental property, you can save yourself a lot of trouble and time by knowing this information.

Airflow Problems

One of the most common reasons for an evaporator coil freezing is poor airflow. When the air flows through the air conditioning unit, it prevents the evaporator coil and other internal components from freezing. The first sign of a frozen evaporator coil is cool to warm air. Whatever the case may be, the air will not be cold as usual. If the problem is not eliminated in a timely manner, the ice will continue to build up until the air conditioner completely malfunctions. The problem can be linked to a blocked vent, malfunctioning fan blower, or clogged air filter. The first place to start mending the problem for people with little to no HVAC experience is the air filter. Inspect the air filter to determine if it is dirty enough to cause the evaporator coil to freeze. If not, move to the vents. Inspect all the vents to determine if they are not blocked. To assess the fan blower, the cage should be detached from the outside unit. If you are not experienced in HVAC, do not hesitate to contact your local HVAC company or contractor. To protect the air conditioner’s most vital components, it is recommended to switch the unit off immediately. Allowing the unit to continue operating will put extreme pressure on all the operating components.

Refrigerant Leak

A refrigerant leak can also result in a frozen evaporator coil. To determine if your air conditioning unit has a freon leak, you must remove the cage from the outdoor unit. Utilizing soapy water in a spray bottle, you can detect refrigerant leaks in the pressurized pipes or lines. The soapy water will bubble up when a leak is present. Take note of this information, so you can share it with your local HVAC contractor. It is impossible to repair an air conditioning refrigerant leak without harming the environment, without the proper equipment. The HVAC technician will determine if the leak can be repaired, or the lines replaced. Do not attempt this repair without the proper equipment or skills.

Lower Than Normal Temperatures

Sometimes a freezing evaporator coil has nothing to do with internal components. In these cases, the problem can be associated with lower-than-normal temperatures. HVAC units work harder and longer when the temperature drops freezing (32 degrees Fahrenheit or 0 degrees Celsius). It is generally not unusual for an evaporator coil to free in freezing temperatures.

How To Thaw Out An AC Evaporator Coil?

The quickest and safest way to thaw out an HVAC evaporator coil is by utilizing the onboard fan. Switch from the heat mode to the fan-only mode to thaw out the unit. This will take anywhere between 45 and 90 minutes, depending on the severity of the icy buildup.

What To Do If The AC Evaporator Coil Freezes Up Repeatedly?

After thawing out the evaporator coil, you can safely switch from fan-only to heat mode. If the evaporator coil begins to refreeze, you will need to contact an HVAC service provider. In extreme temperatures, you may be tempted to continue running the unit, but this is not recommended. Doing so will put a lot of pressure on all the working components, which could result in a full malfunction of the HVAC unit.

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