Additionally, when your AC freezes up, it can put a lot of stress on the unit’s compressor. If you have your air conditioner running while the coil has ice on it, you will likely face expensive repair bills or even the possibility of needing to replace the compressor.
Many people wonder what actually causes an AC unit to freeze up. The answer really comes down to a variety of problems.
Common Reasons Why Your AC Unit Freezes
A common factor in air conditioners that freeze up is when they have an air filter that is dirty or clogged. Air conditioning units need adequate airflow in order to run properly; unfortunately, an air filter that has been neglected and is dirty will obstruct the flow of air.
If you happen to notice ice on either the pipes leading from your air conditioner’s compressor or on the outside unit, it is important to check the air filter and make sure it is clean.
If it is dirty, change it immediately. In fact, when you have your air conditioner running continuously, you should make it a habit to change or clean the filter on a monthly basis.
In addition, be sure to check air registers throughout your home. Vents that are blocked can impede air flow to the AC’s evaporator coil. In order to prevent freezing, evaporator coils must be cleaned regularly.
This is a job that is best left to a licensed HVAC professional. A fan that is not functioning properly can also lead to a problem with your air conditioner freezing up. When the fan isn’t functioning properly, air will not circulate through ducts the way it should.
Another factor that can cause an air conditioner to freeze is when the refrigerant level is low. Many times, this is the result of a leak somewhere in your air conditioning system.
If this is the case, a licensed AC contractor will be able to run a diagnostic test to find the leak and get it fixed as well as add more refrigerant.