Air conditioners do a fine job of keeping indoor temperatures down in the face of the summer heat in the Opelika GA area, but sometimes their propensity for cooling leads to trouble. One of the most common maintenance issues that can emerge with residential air conditioners is ice formation on the coils, a problem that is typically a sign of some more significant issue. If your air conditioner freezes up, don't just let it thaw and ignore the problem. Follow these steps to identify and address the underlying cause.
In some cases, freezing is just the result of outside circumstances rather than a problem with the air conditioner itself. When the outdoor air temperature drops, an air conditioner's internal temperature can be affected, and this can lead to ice formation on the coils. Typically, this takes place overnight, as the air cools after sunset. If ice consistently appears in the morning, outdoor temperatures are likely to blame.
Likely the most common cause of freezing is blocked air flow, which is usually the result of a dirty air filter. When an air filter clogs up with dirt and debris, it restricts the flow of cool air out of the machine, causing the internal temperature to drop and allowing ice to form. Blocked or collapsed ducts can also cause this issue, as can blockages from furniture and other objects.
Potentially the most dangerous reason for an air conditioner to freeze up is a low refrigerant level. Air conditioners are designed to keep their Freon levels constant during normal operation, as the evaporation and condensation cycle does not actually consume refrigerant. If the refrigerant level drops below the recommended level, freezing may ensue. This is typically caused by a refrigerant leak.
If your air conditioner is consistently frozen in the morning, falling outdoor air temperatures are likely to blame. Try shutting the machine off in the evening and turning it back on in the morning, which will keep the air conditioner idle while to air is cool enough to cause freezing. Automatic control equipment may also help.
Dealing with an airflow issue is usually as simple as changing or cleaning the air filter. If your machine uses a reusable filter, be sure to clean it thoroughly and let it air dry completely before putting it back. If it needs a replacement, go to a local factory authorized dealer for a properly sized filter.
To safely repair a refrigerant leak, you will need to call in a professional HVAC technician. At Indoor Solutions, we are familiar with all makes and models of air conditioners and know how to repair every common and uncommon cause of freezing. Don't hesitate to give us a call and schedule an appointment with one of our trained and certified air conditioning experts today.