Frozen Evaporator Coil

Frozen Evaporator Coil

During the summer months, your air conditioner is your best friend. However, if your air conditioner stops working, it can become a major headache. Believe it or not, if your air conditioner is too cool, it can stop working. If your air conditioner’s evaporator coil freezes, it can cause issues with the AC. 

Now, you’re probably wondering what an evaporator coil is and what it means when it freezes. Most importantly, can you fix it?

Photo of Air Conditioner Repair

What Is an Evaporator Coil?

The cooling system is designed to cause temperatures to drop in the room by removing the warm air. The evaporator coil is the component that delivers cool air. Your AC system works to pull warm air that passes over the evaporator coils. Once the refrigerant inside the coils comes into contact with the warm air, it transforms into vapor. 

In short, the coils contain liquid refrigerant and absorb heat as it goes through them.    

What Causes a Frozen Evaporator Coil? 

An evaporator coil can become frozen for a number of reasons, including: 

Dirty Air Filter and Evaporator Coil

A dirty air filter makes the absorbing heat process harder and may cause low system airflow because it causes an airflow issue. Checking your air filters is crucial for your AC unit to function properly. 

A dirty evaporator coil makes absorbing heat harder. If dirt and debris build up, the coils can’t perform their job, and the condensation will most likely freeze. 

Insufficient Air Circulation and Refrigerant Levels

The evaporator coil removes heat. However, insufficient heat could cause the coil to freeze. If you have little airflow, it’s important to check your air conditioning unit as you could have a clogged filter, malfunctioning blower fan, etc.  

If you have low refrigerant levels, it can also cause a frozen evaporator coil because your air conditioning works harder. If you have a frozen coil, it might mean a refrigerant leak. Your air conditioner is a closed system, and the refrigerant shouldn’t run out. Low refrigerant usually indicates that there’s an issue. If you live in Houston AC repair may be all you require to get your AC back up and running. 

Outdoor Temperature 

When an air conditioning system operates, it relies on the coils to remove warm air that passes through them. The refrigerant allows the coils to retain heat and release it outside the building. However, if the outdoor temperature is too low, the air passing through the coils will not contain enough heat. This can lead to a lack of heat transfer from the air to the coils, causing the coils to become cold.  

Furthermore, if moisture is present in the air passing through the coils, it can condense and freeze. This can cause the system to stop working or operate inefficiently, which may result in higher energy bills and reduced comfort levels. Ensure that the air conditioning system is designed to function effectively for the current outdoor temperature. 

Blocked Drainpipe

If you notice condensation on the evaporator coils, it’s part of how the air conditioner works. However, if the drain pipe is blocked, condensation builds up, which could cause frozen evaporator coils. If you come across condensation air conditioning repair in Houston,TX could be the solution.

How to Repair a Frozen Evaporator Coil

Repairing a frozen evaporator coil or other forms of AC repair may require a professional. Nonetheless, there are some things that you can try.

Let It Thaw   

The initial thing you should do if you have a frozen air conditioner is to turn it off for at least a day to allow the thawing process to start. In addition, you could set the mode to fan. By setting it to fan, the warm air can pass through without the refrigerant coming on. If you notice ice accumulation, you will need a drain pan for when the ice melts.

Unclog the Filter

When the air filter in an AC system becomes clogged with dirt, dust, and other debris, it restricts the flow. This can cause the blower to work harder to push air through, which may result in increased energy consumption and decreased system performance. This could lead to requiring an AC replacement.

In addition, you can replace the air filter and see if that makes a difference. The restricted airflow could be due to dust and debris that could be the problem. If that doesn’t resolve the issue, then it’s time to call out a professional as you may need a HVAC repair

Photo of Two Men Working On A Disassembled AC Unit

Clean Coils

If the evaporator coil is not kept clean, it can lead to reduced airflow and cause the evaporator coil to freeze, which may result in damage to the AC unit. To prevent this, you need to turn off the air conditioners from the circuit breaker and find out where the coil extends, which should be near the blower fan. 

You may refer to your manual if you are unable to find them. After that, fill a spray bottle with cleaning detergent and warm water, spray the coil, and leave it on for 10 minutes. Wipe away the dust and debris with a cloth. 

Summing Up

While there are many ways to try and fix the issue, a professional can help you understand if it’s the heat pump, air handler, blower drive belt, or a malfunctioning defrost cycle. The air handler is an essential component of an air conditioning (AC) system and is responsible for circulating conditioned air throughout a building. It’s always ideal to replace the filters as preventative maintenance. If you require a replacement of your AC in Houston, Texas, call today!

Frozen Evaporator Coil