Our air conditioners can experience several problems throughout the course of their lifespan. However, one of the most concerning — and unexpected — is when an outdoor AC unit develops a layer of ice.
Why does your AC freeze up during the summer? It seems almost impossible that anything could become frozen when the weather is hot and humid. Unfortunately, this problem is more common than some homeowners think — and various issues could be to blame for it.
Are you ready to get to the bottom of the problem once and for all? Below, we’ll discuss what causes an air conditioner to freeze up.
Do you enjoy returning home after a long day and relaxing in the cool air? You have the refrigerant in your air conditioner to thank. This substance absorbs the heat inside your home and plays an important role in the cooling process.
However, as your air conditioner gets older, it can become prone to wear and tear. One of the most common kinds of damage is a leak in the refrigerant lines.
Why does your AC freeze up from low refrigerant levels? When there is less refrigerant in your air conditioner, the temperature in the evaporator coils can fall far below normal. This could cause the coils to freeze. Professional HVAC technicians can perform a repair to fix this issue, but they might recommend an air conditioner replacement if your system is nearing the end of its lifespan.
Signs of a Refrigerant Leak
Although a frozen air conditioner can be a clear indication of a refrigerant leak, there are other signs you should look out for. Go give your outdoor air conditioning unit a quick inspection. If you hear strange hissing or bubbling noises, there’s a good chance that you’re dealing with a leak. These noises are essentially the sound of refrigerant escaping the AC unit.
Does your air conditioner take a long time to cool your home? Refrigerant leaks could also be to blame for this problem. Since refrigerant is an important part of the cooling process, low levels will force your AC to run much longer than normal in order to reach the desired temperature.
Dirty Air Filters
When learning what causes an air conditioner to freeze up, don’t dismiss your HVAC system’s air filter. Dirty filters can be the root of many problems, such as poor airflow.
Why does your AC freeze up from poor airflow? The reason is simple. The evaporator coils in your air conditioner work by collecting warm air throughout your home. If this warm air can’t pass through your air conditioning unit, the evaporator coils won’t be able to work correctly. There’s a high possibility that ice will form on the evaporator coils as a result.
Did you know that replacing air filters can have more benefits than simply preventing a frozen AC unit? When you switch out dirty or clogged filters, you can improve your air conditioner’s performance and energy efficiency.
Damaged or collapsed air ductwork could also be to blame for a frozen AC. When your air conditioner has completed a cooling cycle, it will send this cool air out into your home via air ducts. If these ducts become damaged, however, the airflow coming and going from your AC could become blocked. Once again, poor airflow can cause the evaporator coils to freeze.
Clogged Drain Lines
What causes an air conditioner to freeze up besides poor airflow? Another common reason for this issue is clogged drain lines.
All central air conditioners produce condensation during the cooling process. Of course, this excess moisture can’t stay inside your AC system — it has to go somewhere. This is where the condensate drain line comes in. As the name suggests, this drain line’s main purpose is to remove the excess moisture created by your air conditioner.
Why does your AC freeze up from clogged drain lines? If the line gets clogged, the condensation will become trapped inside the unit. This moisture can end up dripping on the evaporator coils. Cold refrigerant will then cause the moisture on these coils to freeze. Although it might seem like a simple fix, you’ll need to schedule a Nassau County HVAC repair to fix this issue.
Schedule Air Conditioner Services With Gold Star
What causes an air conditioner to freeze up? If you ask different HVAC technicians this question, you will probably get a variety of answers. Since there are several potential causes, it can be difficult to diagnose this problem by yourself.
When it’s the middle of summer, air conditioners freezing up can be a real issue for homeowners. Fortunately, Gold Star Plumbing, Heating & Cooling is here to help. Our HVAC technicians are highly familiar with all air conditioning system makes and models and perform a wide range of repairs.
Our customers can always trust us to have their best interests at heart, whether they need routine maintenance services or a full air conditioner installation in Long Island. If you have a freezing unit, contact us to learn how our professional technicians can help!