Why Is My Air Conditioner’s Evaporator Coil Freezing Up?

Every year, it seems like it gets hotter and hotter in the summer. That’s why having an air conditioner is so essential, especially in Montgomery, Alabama. If you’ve turned on your air conditioner this year and found that the unit is running but no cool air is coming into your home, then you’re likely experiencing a frozen air conditioner. You can confirm this is the case if you notice visible ice and condensation build-up on the air conditioning unit.

Specifically, this means that your AC’s Evaporator Coil is Freezing Up, and you need to turn off your air conditioning unit right away before the ice causes more damage. Then call Hans, your trusted air conditioning professionals to come and fix your air conditioner so you can be comfortable in your home again.

Reasons Why Your AC’s Evaporator Coil is Freezing Up

There are many possible reasons for a frozen evaporator coil. The most common reason for this is that the air conditioner is getting insufficient airflow, which is commonly caused by clogged air filters, backed-up drain clogs, or a low fan speed. When there’s a lack of airflow, there won’t be enough heat to prevent the condensation on the evaporator coil from turning into ice. Check to see how many registers are closed in your home. If more than a quarter of your home’s registers are closed, this could also be the cause of frozen evaporator coils.

Sometimes low refrigeration levels lead to a frozen air conditioner. When this occurs, there’s a drop in pressure inside the evaporator coil, which causes moisture to accumulate and freeze up. If your AC unit is experiencing low refrigerant levels, contact an HVAC professional right away.

Another common reason for the accumulation of ice inside your AC unit is a dirty evaporator coil. An excess amount of dirt and debris on the evaporator coil can obstruct the heat exchange process. When the dirty coils are unable to properly absorb the heat from the air, condensation can often turn excessively cold and freeze up.

If you have a window air conditioner unit, make sure that it is tilted slightly so the indoor portion is slightly higher than the outdoor half so the water can properly drain. 

What to Do If Your AC Evaporator Coil Freezes Up

First, you’ll want to turn off your air conditioner. Inspect your air conditioning system inside and out for any obvious signs of condensation or ice. If there is ice, wait until it’s melted before trying to start the air conditioner again. Never chip away at the ice.  Check your ducts to see if you can suction out any water with a wet-dry shop vac.

Although there are some common solutions, you’ll most likely need to call an AC technician from Hans to find the cause and replace refrigeration fluid or parts if needed. 

Common AC Repair Solutions

As a homeowner, there are a few things you can do yourself to help thaw the ice off your AC’s evaporator coil. These are good ideas to prevent further damage from taking place in your air conditioner. A professional HVAC technician is the best bet for completely solving the problem, but these are some steps you can take to get the process started.

  • Melt the ice on the compressor. You can do this by turning off your air conditioner and turning on only the fan. On your thermostat, you’ll find a button that will turn the fan on. The air from the fan will help melt the ice on the compressor. You can also use a hairdryer to help melt the ice faster. 
  • If you’ve turned the fan on and don’t feel any air flowing, you may have a malfunctioning blower fan, broken drive belt, or dead motor. These issues will need to be addressed by an AC technician.  
  • Clogged or dirty air filters are one of the main reasons for a frozen evaporator coil. If your air filter seems clogged, replace it and see if that solves the issue.
  • Make sure your HVAC system is draining properly. If there is a drain pan, make sure ice accumulation on the coil doesn’t extend beyond the drip pan beneath the air handler. Be ready with containers to catch the dripping water and prevent water damage as the ice melts.

Call Hans for Regular AC Inspections

The best way to prevent your heat pump or AC’s evaporator coil from freezing up is to have your air conditioner inspected regularly by the technicians at Hans Heating & Air. With summer in full swing, now is the perfect time to have your air conditioner inspected so it’s ready to tackle the hot summer heat. Give us a call, or contact us online for more information about our cooling services and how your home’s air conditioner works.

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