How to Fix a Frozen Air Conditioner
Summer’s coming (believe it or not) and here's an often cited scenario with the average homeowner: They’re at home, minding their own business, having a bowl of popcorn and watching Netflix, when all of a sudden – that distant terrible sound; drip... drip... drip. They glance over to see the household pet licking at a puddle that's gradually forming on the bathroom floor. In a flash: Worry, stress, and that “how much will this cost?” feeling. Where did the leak come from?; water heater, leaky toilet, shower, faucet? No – the air conditioning equipment may be frozen. This can happen anywhere, from San Antonio to Africa, regardless of weather.
Why Air Conditioners Freeze
The part of the air conditioner that actually freezes is known as the evaporator coil. This component of the air conditioner transfers (evaporates) heat from the inside to the outside of your San Antonio area home. There are two primary reasons the evaporator coil may freeze:
- Airflow restriction
- Lack of sufficient refrigerant
Either way, the ending effect is that the air conditioner's evaporator coil does not properly transfer heat, and in effect 'overcools' itself. The result of this super-cooling is condensation (that's water formation), and eventually ice forms from that condensation as it cools below the freezing point. In other words, the A/C just turned into an old-school icebox.
What Might You Do When Your A/C Freezes?
- Turn the system completely off at the thermostat, and do not increase the thermostat temperature as a way to melt the frost on the coils. Ensure the A/C system is completely OFF.
- Check to ensure that the airflow around your system is unrestricted. Replace the furnace or air handler's filter and replace any return air filters. Open all the registers completely and verify that they are not blocked by furniture or drapes.
- Call San Antonio Air Service Experts. The air conditioning system needs to be professionally inspected to ensure there are no refrigerant leaks or damage to the equipment. Simply schedule a Performance Inspection or Repair Diagnostic online, or call to talk to a live person right away.
What Does it Cost to Repair?
This can become a costly repair. When your unit freezes over it can lead to a compressor replacement. Replacing your compressor can cost as much as a downpayment on a brand new air conditioner. Actually, many homeowners are forced to pick between installing a new system and repairing the old one. If you act quickly and call a ACE-certified technician, you have better odds of getting a less expensive emergency.Your technician will diagnose the situation and how to avoid the issue from repeating in the future. If a leak exists (and that is rare, but possible), the leak has to be repaired or the unit will likely freeze again.