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What Is A Frozen AC?

June 3, 2022 | Blog

The summer heat can feel overbearing at times. However, it does not actively prevent your outdoor AC unit from freezing and causing problems inside your home. A frozen air conditioner is inconvenient, but it is a common issue that many homeowners experience. The team at Island Airco has compiled a guide to navigating a frigid AC system and how to fix it!

What Causes a Frozen AC?

An outdoor air conditioning unit can freeze due to many reasons. If your air conditioner is on but not blowing cold air, or there is ice building up on the system, these are signs that the unit has frozen up.

Inadequate Airflow

The most common reason for an icy air conditioning unit is poor airflow. Various circumstances cause airflow to become blocked, some of which are:

  • Clogged air filter
  • Collapsed air duct
  • Damaged blower motor
  • Dust and dirt buildup on air coils
  • Not enough power to fan

These issues can comprise your system, preventing warm air from flowing over the unit’s coils. Although the AC unit blows cool air into your home, warm air needs to remain in the system. Without heat, your coils will freeze and cause your outdoor unit to malfunction.

Low Refrigerant Levels

Refrigerant is a substance that cools the air before it enters your home. Your outdoor system requires enough refrigerant to work. It can experience problems when there isn’t an adequate amount.

When refrigerant levels are low, the pressure drops within your AC unit. This issue causes nearby water vapor to cling onto the inner coils and freeze. Occasionally, this water can build up to a thicker piece of ice.

Clogged Condensate Line

Moisture collects from the evaporator coil when air passes over it. A condensate line drains the water from the outdoor system and deposits water outside the air conditioning unit.

If a blockage in the line occurs, the water becomes trapped inside the AC unit. Eventually, water freezes to the coil and causes your system to malfunction.

Repairing a Frozen AC Unit

Professional HVAC repair services can help you fix an icy air conditioning unit. However, there are a few steps you can take before calling in a licensed technician.

Thawing the Ice

If you suspect that your unit is freezing, it is crucial to thaw your air conditioner as soon as possible. You should shut your unit off while waiting for any icy buildup to melt. The system can also be shut off with the blower running, helping the ice thaw.

As the ice begins to melt, carefully soak up any water with a towel. Refrain from scraping or using other heat sources to thaw the coils. These methods can damage your air conditioner, leading to additional costly repairs.

Examining Your Unit

While the ice is melting, you can check the components of your AC system to ensure they are working. If something clogs the condensate line or blocks the air filter, this could point to an issue causing the unit to freeze.

Changing your air filter or unclogging a drain can prevent the effects of a frozen air conditioner. Cleaning the coils of any dirt can also cause the problem to subside.

After checking these components, turn your unit back on to ensure it is working correctly. Continue to check the system over the following weeks.

What to Do if Freezing Persists

If ice continues to form in your air conditioner, professional HVAC repair may be necessary. Licensed technicians can inspect your outdoor system, preventing any issues with regular tune-ups.

Contact Us Today!

If ice is a consistent issue with your outdoor air conditioner, we’ve got you covered. The team at Island Airco is here to help with any Eureka Springs AC repair. Call us today to get started with your next steps!

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