My Air Conditioner Is Frozen! What Happened?

Air conditioners are designed to provide cooling but they are not supposed to freeze themselves. Unfortunately, this can happen in certain cases causing inefficiencies and headaches. A frozen air conditioner cannot function properly. It needs to be shut off to allow the ice to melt and get things back to normal. Otherwise, the system might get damaged and be due for a costly fix. Freezing can occur in the following scenarios:

Incorrect Installation

Installing a window type air conditioner is best left to professionals to ensure that everything is done right down to the smallest detail. Sometimes it is the little things that count. Take for instance the tilt of the unit. Contrary to popular belief, the A/C should not be exactly parallel to the ground. It should lean slightly towards the back so that any debris or liquid that might get inside will roll down to the outside. This is vital for the built-in drainage system which collects condensed water from the evaporator coils. The water should flow down to the pan and then to the pipes. However, without proper tilting water will get stuck inside where it may freeze.

Drainage Clogs

Aside from having the unit correctly installed, homeowners must also see to it that the drainage system is working well. Check it once a week or so just to be on the safe side. Drops of water should flow out from the drainpipes. The flow is generally at its heaviest when the weather is hot and humid. The humidity in the air is reduced by the A/C using the cooling power of the evaporator coils. Moisture from the air around it gets so cold that water vapor turns to liquid. This needs to be evacuated right away otherwise it will freeze in the event of a clog.

Slow Fans

The cold air surrounding the coils is blown towards the room by the built-in fans. If the fans are operating slower than they need to, then the coils will keep dropping in temperature until they freeze. Increasing fan speed can reduce the problem.

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