Los Angeles Air Conditioning: What Should I Do if My Evaporator Coil Is Frozen?
If your air conditioner is having problems keeping up with the heat in the Los Angeles area, it’s possible that the evaporator coil has frozen, which can reduce cooling efficiency and lead to system damage. When the evaporator coil is frozen, you’ll have to first thaw it, then correct the cause of the problem before running the system again.
Causes of a Frozen Evaporator Coil
Typically when the evaporator coil is frozen, it’s caused by either airflow or refrigeration problems, which allow the temperature of the refrigerant in the coil to fall below the dew point. Moisture from the air then condenses on the coil and starts to freeze. Specific causes of this problem include:
- A dirty air filter
- Dirty evaporator coil
- Air ducts that are blocked, crushed or otherwise obstructed
- Dirty blower fan
- Loose blower motor belt
- Failed blower motor
- Refrigerant leak
- Clogged filter or dryer in the refrigerant lines
Thawing the Evaporator Coil
Shut off the power to the air conditioning system at the breakers. Turn on the blower fan to help move warm air over the coils, and wait until the coils are thawed completely before attempting to turn the system back on. The process may be accelerated with a hair dryer or heat gun, but avoid using other tools to remove the ice, as they may damage the coils.
Finding the Source of the Problem
Check the air filter to make sure it’s not excessively dirty, and replace it if necessary. Open all the supply and return vents in your duct system. Remove any obstructions from inside the ducts and make sure the vents aren’t blocked by furniture, drapes or other objects. After the ice is melted, clean the evaporator coils and the blower fan, if necessary, and make sure the fan belt is in good condition and adjusted properly. If you suspect there are problems with damaged ducts, the blower motor or the refrigerant system, call an HVAC professional.
For help when your evaporator coil is frozen, talk to our team at Air-Tro, Inc. We proudly serve the greater Los Angeles area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Los Angeles, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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