Why Is My AC Frozen?

May 26, 2017

It seems counter-intuitive that your air conditioner could freeze when it’s 90 degrees or hotter on a hot summer day in Southwest Georgia, but it happens to homeowners all the time! There are plenty of reasons that your AC could freeze, and all of them are frustrating. Keep reading below to find out why your air conditioner is frozen and what you should do if this happens to you.

Common Reasons Air Conditioners Freeze

Refrigerant Problems

An undercharged refrigerant system means the levels are too low. This can happen due to improper charging at installation or because a leak has developed. Either way, low refrigerant is not good for the evaporator coil, which becomes too cold when the pressure drops below normal. This allows moisture in the air around the evaporator coil to freeze and accumulate there.

Clogged Air Filter

This is a primary cause of low airflow, which results in less air being delivered to the evaporator coil for cooling. It’s important to keep enough hot air moving over the evaporator coil so it doesn’t freeze.

Closed or Blocked Return Registers

You may be tempted to shut the registers in unused rooms of your home, but if you shut more than one-fourth of the home’s supply registers, you could unintentionally restrict airflow and cause the AC to freeze. Rugs and furniture can also block registers and impair airflow.

Inadequate Fan Speed

The blower motor must operate on a high enough level that it sends air at the right speed over the evaporator coil. A too-low speed could result in insufficient airflow, and then you have a frozen AC on your hands.

Issues with the Thermostat

The air conditioner could be running all night without your knowledge. This not only wastes energy, but since the air isn’t very hot, the constant operation with a mild air temperature could cause the unit to freeze.

Drainage Problems

One of the jobs of the evaporator coil is to remove excess moisture from the air. Normally, moisture collects on the coils, drips into a condensate pan and drains to the outside. If something clogs the drain, backed-up water can freeze all the way up to the evaporator coil. The ice then further blocks the drain and exacerbates the drainage problem.

What to Do if Your AC Freezes

  • Shut off the air conditioner to prevent risking damage to the compressor and wasting money.
  • Locate the condensate drain and make sure it isn’t backed up.
  • Speed up the thawing process by using a blow dryer on the evaporator coil. It’s also effective to run the AC fan without the compressor.
  • Consider opening up the ductwork to suction out water with a wet-dry shop vac as the ice melts.
  • Turn the AC back on only once the ice has melted and the condensate drain pan is clearly draining properly. The unit should begin cooling your home immediately.

Frozen AC in Southwest Georgia? Call Harrell King!

It’s great to know why you’re having problems with a frozen air conditioner, but it’s always best to call a professional HVAC technician when you need repairs. Sometimes, trying to “do-it-yourself” could result in more problems than you originally started with. Plus, sometimes doing your own repairs voids the manufacturer’s warranty on your system!

If you need AC repairs in Bainbridge, Thomasville, or a nearby town, call Harrell King at 229-495-6050!

"This letter is to express appreciation for the fine service you and your company have given me and my family recently. As your…

"On Saturday the A/C unit at our lake house, located in Donalsonville, quit working. I checked the outside breaker box and found that…

"I would like to thank you for the quick and responsive service you and your people provided when my unit went down. I…

View More Reviews>>