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How to Fix a Frozen Air Conditioner 

Summer’s coming (we promise) and here’s a typical scenario with the average homeowner: They’re at home, minding their own business, happily indulging a bowl of popcorn and watching Netflix, when all of a sudden – that distant awful sound; drip… drip… drip. They glance over to see the cat licking at a puddle that’s steadily forming on the dining room floor. Suddenly: Concern, stress, and that “how much will this cost?” feeling. How did the leak start?; water heater, leaky toilet, shower, faucet? Nope – the air conditioning equipment may be frozen. This can happen anywhere, from Columbus to Thailand, regardless of climate. 

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 Columbus area home. The two main reasons why the evaporator coil may freeze: 

  1. Restricted air flow 
  1. Insufficient refrigerant 

Either way, the outcome is that the air conditioner’s evaporator coil does not properly dissipate heat, and consequently ‘overcools’ itself. The impact of this super-cooling is condensation (that’s water formation), and eventually ice forms from that condensation as it cools below the freezing point. Yep, the A/C has morphed into an old-school icebox. 

What Can You Do When Your A/C Freezes? 

  • Turn the system completely off at the thermostat, and don’t try to thaw the system by increasing the temperature at the thermostat. Just make sure the A/C system is completely OFF. 
  • Confirm that there is nothing restricting the airflow to the system. Replace the furnace or air handler’s filter as well as any return air filters. Open all the registers completely and verify that they are not impeded by furniture or drapes. 
  • Call Stevenson Service Experts. The air conditioning system needs to be serviced by a professional that is ACE-certified 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 become a costly repair. When your unit freezes over it can lead to a compressor replacement. Replacing your compressor could cost as much as a downpayment on a brand new air conditioner. In fact, many homeowners are forced to choose between installing a new system or repairing the old model. If you move fast, follow the instructions, and call a ACE-certified technician, you have better odds of having a less expensive emergency. 

Your technician will diagnose the situation and how to avoid the issue from occurring in the future. If a leak is present (and that is rare, but possible), the leak has to be repaired or the unit will probably freeze again. 

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