Summer’s coming (believe it or not) and here's a common scenario with the average homeowner: They’re sitting in their house, minding their own business, having a bowl of popcorn and watching a movie, when suddenly he/she hears dreadful sound; drip... drip... drip. They glance over to see the dog licking at a puddle that's gradually forming on the dining room floor. In a flash: Anxiety, stress, and that “how much will this cost?” feeling. How did the leak start?; water heater, leaky toilet, shower, faucet? No – the air conditioning equipment may be frozen. This can strike anywhere, from Wheeling to Thailand, regardless of summer heat.
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 Wheeling area home. There are two primary reasons the evaporator coil may freeze:
- The restriction of the system’s airflow
- Low refrigerant
Either way, the outcome is that the air conditioner's evaporator coil does not properly transfer heat, and in effect '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. Yep, the A/C transformed into an old-school icebox.
What Can You Do When Your A/C Freezes?
- Turn the system completely off at the thermostat, and do not just move up the temperature on the thermostat. Ensure the A/C system is completely OFF.
- Do what you can to ensure airflow is not restricted. 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 Comfort Masters Service Experts. The air conditioning system needs to be inspected by a ACE-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 lead to a pricey repair. When your air conditioner freezes over it can lead to a totaled compressor. Replacing your compressor could easily cost as much as a downpayment on a high efficiency model. Unfortunately, many people are forced to decide between installing a new system or repairing the old model. If you follow the steps above and quickly call a ACE-certified technician, you have better odds of getting a less expensive repair. 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.