How to Fix a Frozen Air Conditioner

February 23, 2015

Summer’s coming (as hard as it is to believe right now) and here's a common scenario with the average homeowner: They’re at home, minding their own business, having a bowl of popcorn and watching their favorite TV show, when all of a sudden – that distant dreadful sound; drip... drip... drip. They look over to see the cat licking at a puddle that's steadily forming on the dining room floor. Just like that, the mood changes: Worry, stress, and that “how much will this cost?” feeling. How did the leak start?; water heater, leaky toilet, shower, faucet? Not necessarily – it's the air conditioner of all things. This can strike anywhere, from Daytona Beach to Africa, regardless of weather.

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Why Air Conditioners Freeze

When a central air conditioner freezes up, what actually freezes is the condenser unit's evaporator coil. This component of the air conditioner transfers (evaporates) heat from the inside to the outside of your Daytona Beach area home. The two main reasons why the evaporator coil may freeze:

  1. Airflow restriction
  2. Lack of sufficient refrigerant

Either way, the result is that the air conditioner's evaporator coil cannot operate to properly transfer heat, and consequently 'overcools' itself. The impact of this super-cooling is condensation (that's water formation), and over time ice forms from that condensation as it cools below the freezing point. In short, the A/C just turned into an old-school icebox.

What Should You Do When Your A/C Freezes?

  1. Turn the A/C completely off at the thermostat, and do not just move up the temperature on the thermostat. It is important that the A/C system is completely OFF.
  2. Check to ensure that the airflow around your system is unrestricted. Replace the furnace or air handler's filter along with any return air filters. Open all the registers completely and verify that they are not impeded by furniture or drapery.
  3. Call All American Air Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. The air conditioning system needs to be inspected by a NATE-certified professional 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 turn into a costly repair. When your air conditioner freezes over it can lead to a compressor replacement. Replacing your compressor can cost as much as a downpayment on a high efficiency model. Actually, many homeowners are forced to pick between installing a new system and repairing the old one. If you follow the steps above and quickly call a NATE-certified technician, you have better odds of having a less expensive emergency.

Your technician will advise you of the exact cause and how to avoid the issue from happening again. If a leak exists (and that is rare, but possible), the leak has to be repaired or the unit will most likely freeze again.
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