Is Your AC Icing Up and Continuously Running?
Updated: Jun 4, 2018
When the weather gets hot and humid, it may seem silly to be concerned about an air conditioner that continuously cycles on. As long as you are cooling off, it doesn’t matter, right? Unfortunately, this can be very damaging to your system, forcing it to work harder than it should and all-in-all not performing very efficiently.
There are various reasons this might occur. However, when your compressor is running nonstop and you notice that the indoor coil of your system is icing up, then you likely have a very specific problem. That issue is in regard to your refrigerant.
The Refrigerant Misconception
Many homeowners believe that refrigerant is something that their air conditioning system uses up like an automobile uses up fuel. The fact is that your air conditioner is supplied with enough refrigerant upon professional installation to ideally last its lifetime. Refrigerant serves as a heat transference medium, and is not designed to dissipate as it goes through evaporation and condensation.
So if your AC system is losing refrigerant, it means that you have a leak. This low level of refrigerant causes your air conditioner to work harder, and disable its ability to cool your home as it should. As a result, your compressor will start to run nonstop as it struggles to keep up.
So Why Does Ice Form?
When you have a refrigerant leak, the remaining refrigerant cannot sufficiently absorb the heat it is intended too, so your evaporator coil stays too cold. Eventually, this will cause moisture along the coil to freeze, and the resulting ice further restricts heat absorption, causing a downward spiral.
There are a number of reasons your compressor might be malfunctioning, just as there are different reasons you may see ice forming. However no matter what the cause is, it’s vital that you call in a professional right away as neither of these are ever good signs for your AC system. Another reason your indoor coil could ice up is due to lack of airflow from a dirty coil or dirty filter.