One of the most common questions homeowners have for our technicians is, “Is ice on my air conditioner normal?” It may seem as though it is—after all, an air conditioner’s job is to supply cold air, right? Unfortunately, ice is not normal and you would be right to be concerned if you discover this issue.
Ice on air conditioners is not a rare problem, but one that should be taken care of right away. But how does ice form on your AC? And most importantly, why should you worry if ice is forming on your air conditioner? We’ve answered this and more below.
How Ice Forms on Your AC
Air conditioning systems run on refrigerant. This chemical blend of fluids cycles through a series of valves and coils which raise and lower the temperature. Your system’s condenser coils shift the refrigerant from a gas to a liquid, while the expansion coils evaporate the liquid and return it to a gas. This process siphons heat from the air that surrounds the coils, and the newly cooled air can them be blown into your home with a fan.
However, sometimes a refrigerant leak may occur. Since this entire process relies on that refrigerant, if there is a leak it gets thrown off. As a result, ice forms an insulating layer between the remaining refrigerant and the air that it is supposed to cool.
Ice is a symptom of a problem, not the actual problem itself. As we mentioned above, a refrigerant leak is likely occurring. This causes the efficiency of your air conditioner to drop, and causes your AC system to work harder than it should have too. You’ll need a professional to seal the leak and recharge (refill) the refrigerant to its appropriate levels.
From our HVAC technicians to the owner, you can rely on the experts from DB Heating & Cooling, Inc. for all of your air conditioning repair needs in Mahwah, NJ and beyond.