Air Conditioner Freezing: Are Dirty Ducts the Cause?

air conditioner freezingIs your air conditioning unit freezing up?

Maybe you’ve just started experiencing one or two of the symptoms, like a reduction in air flow. Right now you may think it’s merely an irritating problem.

But that irritating problem can be costly if you don’t take immediate steps. Often the solution is easier than dealing with the problem itself.

It could simply be a problem with your air ducts. An easy solution if you know what to look for.

So here are some tips to help prevent air conditioner freezing on you.

Why Air Conditioner Freezing Occurs

Many of the signs that your air conditioner is having problems are so subtle you may not even notice them. Which is why it’s so important to be diligent and know the warning signs.

Why? Because otherwise, it can lead to irreversible damage to your system’s compressor.

So here are the first signs your air conditioner is freezing up on you.

  • Your A/C suddenly doesn’t work as well as it used to – both the output is less and the air is warmer than it should be when the unit is on
  • You are having unusually large amounts of drainage coming from the air conditioning unit
  • Your air conditioning unit is constantly running

If any of these signs are noticeable, take action immediately. Your first step will be to turn off the air conditioner.

What To Do When Air Conditioner Freezing Happens

There are several steps to take when doing an inspection to see what’s going on with your air conditioner.

If there is ice within the air conditioner, turn off the air conditioner and turn on the fan to defrost the unit.

Air Flow Issues

This is a common issue. When anything stops, blocks, or restricts the air from moving over the cooling coils, it gets too cold and condensation and moisture build up.

Here’s how to tell if your air conditioner has air flow issues.

  • Your air filters are dirty. To prevent this (and allergies) from happening, simply clean your air filters once a month.
  • Your supply vents are closed. Keep them open to keep air flowing properly.
  • Your grills are covered. Keep your air conditioner away from drapes, curtains, or anything else that can prevent air from circulating properly.
  • Dirt on the evaporator coil.
  • Ductwork not properly sized.

Indoor Evaporator Coil Is Frozen

This is also common. If you suspect ice, turn off the air conditioner and turn on the fan to help speed up defrosting the unit. Do NOT turn on the a/c until a professional has taken a look at it.

Signs the coil is frozen:

  • Ice buildup on the outdoor refrigerant line or on the evaporator coil.
  • Condensation or large amounts of drainage is noticeable.

You’re a Human Polar Bear

Another possible reason is that it’s simply too cold outside. If you’re running your air conditioner when it’s colder than 62 degrees outside, the pressure inside your system will drop and cause problems.

Of course, sometimes parts just break for some reason. So it’s time to get them replaced.

Willard Power Vac has been in business since 1975. We provide HVAC cleaning for homes and businesses in the Pacific Northwest. Call us and we’ll help you stay cool and healthy all year long.

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