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How Do You Fix a Frozen Air Conditioner?

Posted on: August 27, 2018

Any DeLand local can tell you that an operational air conditioner is absolutely vital for surviving the summer months. It’s hot, it’s humid, and you need dependable cooling if you want to avoid melting into a puddle! So what do you do when your air conditioner starts cooling a little too much? What causes an air conditioner to freeze, and what can you do to fix it? Learn from the professionals at Jacob Heating & Air Conditioning—we’ll help you out!

What Causes an Air Conditioner to Freeze in Florida?

There are two major reasons a cooling system might start to form frost and ice—one is more common than the other. We’ll break this down so that you can understand what may have caused your frozen air conditioner:

Restrictions in Airflow

Problems with airflow center around your evaporator coils but frequently originate with something a bit simpler. In short, your air conditioner’s evaporator coils produce condensation during operation. Normally this isn’t much of an issue, as fans constantly blow over the coil to control and blow away condensation and to push cool air into your home. If this process is interrupted, then the cold air will stick around, the water will go nowhere, and thus you have ice!

The common causes of airflow restrictions will include:

  • A dirty or clogged air filter. If the air filter in your cooling system is clogged up, air cannot flow correctly, leading to ice formation. Change your filters regularly!
  • Clogged registers and vents. Make sure your home’s vents are open and completely unobstructed to avoid airflow issues.
  • A dirty evaporator coil. Coils get their fair share of dirt and grime. Normally an AC tune-up takes care of this, but if you missed this year’s service, you might experience some trouble.
  • Damaged or worn out blower assembly. The blower assembly (it’s a fan) moves air, so if it is damaged or worn down, you don’t get any airflow and can experience an AC freeze-up.

Low Refrigerant Levels

Getting low on refrigerant can also cause an air conditioner to freeze. This happens basically because your air conditioner doesn’t know that it’s low on refrigerant and will just go on trying to operate. In this case, what refrigerant there is in the unit will go about its business but will be unable to get the job done right. This means temperature drops in the system, and then eventually ice.

Keep in mind that your air conditioner does not “use up” refrigerant. Any loss of refrigerant charge is due to a leak, which needs to be diagnosed and repaired immediately.

What Do I Do When My Air Conditioner Freezes?

We know it can be really easy to stress out, but this is repairable! Stay calm and if you notice ice forming on your air conditioner, follow these steps:

  • Shut down the air conditioner so that the unit can begin to thaw.
  • You may allow the unit to run on “fan” mode to aid in deicing, but if the ice is extensive, it’s best left off.
  • Check your air filter first—if the filter is a mess, then this is probably an easy fix that only requires a store run.
  • If your problem is not the filter, call a professional! These kinds of problems can cause tons of trouble if left unchecked, so scheduling repair service right away is ideal.

Dealing with a frozen, iced-up air conditioner in West Volusia County, FL? Call Jacob by dialing ​(386) 337-3502 or schedule AC repair online!