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Should My Air Conditioner Be Frozen?

evaporator-coil-air-conditionerSince an air conditioner does cool down the air, many people are not surprised to see that the indoor components of the air conditioner are frozen. Still, this is something that should alarm you. If you’re checking up on your air conditioner, it’s likely because you’re not getting the performance you expect from it. And if the inside coils are frozen, this could give you some indication as to why.

Today, we go over why air conditioners freeze up and why it is definitely a problem that needs repair. For more information, or to schedule your air conditioner repair in Alpharetta, GA, give us a call!

Why Air Conditioners Freeze

Air conditioners can freeze for any of several reasons. We’ll go into some of the specific causes of a frozen air conditioner when we help you to diagnose the issues below. Right now, we want to help you understand that a frozen coil means something has gone wrong.

A frozen air conditioning coil means that something is causing a temperature imbalance within the refrigerant flowing through the indoor evaporator coil. This coil is meant to absorb heat from the air moving in from your home in order to transfer that heat outdoors. If the indoor coil is frozen, either:

  1. There is not enough warm air or heat moving over the indoor coil, or
  2. Refrigerant is not doing a sufficient job of absorbing heat.

How Ice Gets in the Way of Cooling

If there is ice coating the indoor coil, then your air conditioner won’t perform as it’s supposed to. It may seem as though a frozen coil will be able to transfer cool air into the home better. But the fact of the matter is that if your indoor coil is frozen, it won’t be able to transfer heat—the way an air conditioner cools a home.

“Cooling” cannot be created, really: heat must first be removed. And an icy coil prevents the refrigerant moving through it from the heat transfer process that is essential to refrigeration

If your air conditioner is iced over, you’ll likely notice some issues. Your air conditioner may take longer to cool your home, or completely fail to reach thermostat temperatures. Bills are higher, and you risk the thawing ice leaking into your home!

Potential Causes for Your Frozen AC Evaporator Coil

There are a few things that could potentially cause your AC evaporator to freeze. A lack of warm air moving over the coil could stem from…

  • A broken fan motor that isn’t moving enough air over the coil.
  • A dirty air filter that’s blocking the airflow.
  • Short cycling, perhaps because an air conditioner is oversized and cannot move enough air during short cycles that come in frequent bursts.

Additionally, low refrigerant levels could cause your air conditioner to stop absorbing and releasing heat, which could also result in freezing.

Do You Need Professional AC Repairs?

It’s possible that you can change a filter or make a small tune-up that will repair the problem. However, we usually recommend contacting a professional AC technician, just to be sure. A professional can ensure that you have enough refrigerant. If not, they are licensed to handle and charge refrigerant and make any sealing to the refrigerant line that may be necessary.

For all your air conditioning needs, call the experts—Air Conditioning Experts, Inc. We provide AC repair and much more for your central cooling system.

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