If you discover that your air conditioner unit is frozen, do not be alarmed. This is an ordinary issue with central air conditioners that may be caused by a dirty air filter. In many cases, you may be able to unthaw the AC unit yourself, and we’ll show you just how. Let’s take a look at how to fix your frozen air conditioning system in just a few steps.
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Signs Your Air Conditioner is Frozen
How do you know your air conditioner is frozen? Before checking the outdoor unit, there may be some telltale signs within your home. If your air conditioner is not able to maintain the temperature on your thermostat, this is a signal of an issue with your AC unit. Do you notice that your home isn’t as cool as it should be? Place your hand over one of the supply registers to see if there’s air coming out. If the airflow is weak or warm, this could be an indicator of a frozen air conditioner.
How to Fix a Frozen Air Conditioning System
If your AC unit is frozen, you will definitely notice. The unit’s coils, panels, and any other main components may be covered in ice. This typically means that your system’s refrigerant has fallen below 32 degrees, which results in a frozen air conditioning system. Here’s how to defrost it.
Step 1) Turn Off the Central Air Conditioner
The first step to fixing a frozen air conditioner is to locate the breaker box in your home and turn the power off. To properly deactivate your central air conditioner, flip the switch to the off position in your electrical panel. Defrosting can take anywhere from 1 to 24 hours. Do not try to remove the ice from the air conditioning system. This can potentially damage essential components of your frozen air conditioning system. Once the unit has thawed, you may remove any water that has gathered around the system.
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Step 2) Activate the Fan or Blower
While unthawing a frozen AC unit, activate the blower or fan to help circulate air and dry the coils. You can do this by turning on the system’s power and setting the thermostat control to blower or fan only. You can also use an hair dryer to eliminate excess moisture on the coils of the frozen air conditioning system. If you choose to utilize an air dryer, set the temperature to a low setting to avoid damage to the coils.
Step 3) Inspect For Problem
Once your system has unthawed, you should be able to properly detect the problem. Some types of air conditioner issues can be fixed easily. First, check your air filter to confirm if it’s dirty. Believe it or not, dirty air filters are the most common cause for a frozen AC. This is because dirty air filters hinder airflow, which prevents the air from interacting with the evaporator coils. If you notice dirty air filters, replace them accordingly.
We also recommend inspecting your condenser coils and fins to confirm if dirt and debris are hindering airflow in your household. If that’s the case, clean the coils with a soft brush. Be very gentle when removing grime. Take a look inside your home for potential problems as well. If your air conditioner is freezing up, it’s important to remove any household appliances and furniture that may block supply vents throughout your home.
Although the air conditioner in your house may be frozen due to a contaminated air filter or condenser coils, the source of this issue may also be a refrigerant leak. To properly fix a refrigerant leak, you will be required to purchase specialized tools and equipment. If you don’t feel comfortable conducting this type of project, call a licensed HVAC technician in your area to receive assistance.
Step 4) Turn the Air Conditioner Back On
Now that you’ve unthawed and addressed any AC unit errors, it’s time to restore the power. Switch the breaker back to the on position and adjust your thermostat to the desired temperature. Within a few minutes, you should start to feel cool air coming from the vents. If your air conditioner is still taking a long time to achieve the desired temperature or is blowing warm air, contact a professional HVAC technician right away!
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Ways to Prevent Your Air Conditioner From Freezing in the Future
Routine AC maintenance is the best solution to avoiding a frozen air conditioning unit. To increase the life cycle of your air conditioner, we recommend replacing air filters regularly, clearing twigs or debris away from the outdoor unit, cleaning the condenser coils, and more. We recommend contacting an HVAC professional to get a thorough AC tune-up, as well as resolve any potential problems before they occur.
5 Factors that Impact the Lifespan of Your Air Conditioner
When choosing and maintaining an air conditioning unit, there are many things to consider. Let’s take a look at five factors that influence the lifespan and condition of your air conditioner unit.
When it comes to your HVAC system, getting the right brand is just as important as anything else. High-quality air conditioning systems from reliable brands feature a longer lifespan when compared to cheap systems. A cheap HVAC system may seem ideal for your budget at the moment but may end up being a much more costly endeavor. Choose a unit among leading brands, read reviews, and compare. Make sure you get the best quality system.
Improperly Sized System
Nothing is more inconvenient than purchasing the wrong size unit. This may cause issues such as short cycling, unusually high utility bills, and inefficient cooling. These are the consequences of a unit that is too big or too small. Before purchasing a unit, make sure you’re taking the necessary steps to determine the unit size best for your home.
Unfortunately, it is common for central air conditioners to be installed incorrectly. The quality of your air conditioning install plays a large role in your system’s lifespan. If positioned in the wrong location or if components are attached wrong, your system can suffer for a long time. It’s important to have a certified technician install and repair your system at all times.
If your air conditioning system runs continuously throughout the day and night, this can impact the lifespan of your unit. This issue may be caused by a bigger problem with your system. We recommend contacting a certified technician for assistance.
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Performing maintenance on your system makes a major difference. Just like any household appliance, your AC system needs regular inspections and maintenance to prevent it from freezing. Speak with your local technician about regular air conditioning maintenance.
Air Conditioning Services Near You in Florida
If your air conditioner is frozen, give our team of licensed HVAC technicians a call by phone at (904) 217-5694. Get the annual maintenance and repair options you need. Like any piece of machinery, air conditioners will last longer if you take care of them correctly. Our team of certified HVAC contractors provides HVAC repair services for air conditioners, heat pumps, and furnaces. From cleaning evaporator coils to detecting refrigerant leaks, our team of air conditioning technicians can help you repair your air conditioner in Jacksonville and other areas of Florida.