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Serving the South Puget Sound and Western Washington Areas Since 1976

Serving the South Puget Sound and Southwest Washington Areas Since 1976

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Sunset Air Blog

Why Is There Ice on My Air Conditioner?

You’re probably going to be running your air conditioner on an almost daily basis for the next several months. That means a more stress on the system, which then means a greater chance of problems occurring. One of those problems is ice forming on your air conditioner. You may think that ice is actually a good thing when you’re trying to cool down. However, if your air conditioner is icing over it’s actually a sign of a pretty serious issue. Read on to find out why this happens, and what you can do about it.

The Causes

Within your air conditioner’s indoor unit is a part called the evaporator coil. This is the part that evaporates refrigerant to siphon heat from the indoor air. A side effect of this process is condensation forming on the coil, as the temperature of the surrounding air is lowered to the dew point. As the coil is wet during operation, it also has a tendency to attract dust. An air filter is typically in place to protect the coil from excessive dirt, but it does need to be changed in order to remain effective.

If there is ice on your air conditioner, it almost certainly means that the evaporator coil is frozen. There are two possible explanations. First, there isn’t enough refrigerant in the system. This causes the coil to malfunction and lower the temperature of the surrounding air to the point where the condensate freezes. The second possibility is that the air filter has become clogged, cutting off air flow and causing the condensate to freeze. Either way, ice on the coil can warp it permanently, prevent the system from cooling properly, and spread to other systems.

The Solution

The solution to air conditioner ice is to have your system checked often by a professional, and to call a technician as soon as you notice ice on your air conditioner. The sooner it’s taken care of, the more damage you’ll be able to mitigate.

Need air conditioning repairs? Call Sunset Air! We repair air conditioners throughout Olympia, WA.

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