AC Unit Freezing Up at Night? What Causes Evaporator Coils to Freeze in Henderson, NV & How to Troubleshoot & Fix

When you live in hot places like the Las Vegas desert, the air conditioner in your home is truly a necessity. In order to ensure your air conditioner is in the best condition possible through its lifespan, or beyond, as well as reduce the need for repairs, it requires professional inspections, tune-ups, and maintenance in addition to the cleaning and care you provide. With the moving parts, constant and extended use in the hotter areas, you are still going to need to get your air conditioner repaired from time to time. When it comes to the air conditioner, one of the most frequent sources as to why the air conditioner is experiencing problems is frozen coils and we at Air Supply Heating and Air Conditioning would like to briefly account for the common issues concerning this matter.

Evaporator Coil Function in AC System

The air conditioner is comprised of many parts, and the evaporator coils are a primary component. The refrigerant absorbs the heat from the air as the air handler blows return air over the coils, this refrigerant is housed inside the coils. The now cooler air is sent through the air ducts and dispersed into the various rooms of your home. When the air conditioner is not operating correctly or at all, often people inspect the unit to find the coils have frozen over. Frozen coils could have occurred for a variety reasons, below are the most common reasons.

Causes of Frozen Evaporator Coils

Having multiple uses, the air conditioner cools and dehumidifies the air in your home. Moisture is pulled from the air when it is dehumidified. As a result of this action, the condensation will sometimes buildup on and drip down onto the evaporator coils. Generally, the excess moisture drips into the drip pan and is flushed away, causing no problems. However, the condensation can potentially freeze up and build a layer of ice on your evaporator coils under the right circumstances. Here are a few causes to frozen evaporator coils:
1) Improper Airflow: Improper airflow can cause the coils to freeze because of the coils can’t absorb enough heat from the return air blowing over them, they will freeze. Examples of inadequacies include clogged air filter, air duct leaks, and/or blocked air registers, and other such restrictions.
2) Filthy Evaporator Coils: A disruption in the cooling process is caused the natural accumulation of dirt and debris builds on the coils, preventing the coils from absorbing heat from your home’s air; causing frozen coils.
3) Low Levels of Refrigerant: Low refrigerant levels indicate a leak in the line more often than not. Without adequate levels of refrigerant the unit lacks the ability to absorb heat from your home’s air, which makes the coils freeze.

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Upon noticing your coils have become frozen, first try switching the thermostat off, and the air conditioning unit. Leave the A/C off for a few hours, giving the coils the opportunity to thaw. During that time, check the air filters and make sure they are not the issue, clean the coils and make sure there is no clutter surrounding them. Flip on the air conditioner and keep an eye on the coils, if they freeze again turn off the air conditioning unit again. To find out what the problem is, call Air Supply Heating and Air Conditioning and our trained professionals will get the problem resolved quickly and efficiently.