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While running your air conditioner this summer, you may notice ice forming on the outside of the unit. This may seem like a good thing. After all, ice means that the air conditioner is putting out really cold air, right? Wrong, actually. Ice forming on your air conditioner is a sign that there is a serious problem with your system. Read on to find out more about why this happens, and the consequences of ignoring it.

Why It Happens

Your air conditioner is able to cool the air in your home by using an evaporator coil to evaporate refrigerant. This draws thermal energy out of the air around the coil, which is absorbed by the refrigerant. There are two effects of doing this. The temperature around the coil drops, and condensation forms on the coil. Due to the constant flow of warm air from the home while the air conditioner is running, the evaporator coil can maintain a precarious temperature balance to keep operating properly. However, a disruption in the flow of air will cause issues.

If the air flow to the coil is disrupted, either from a broken air handler or a clogged air filter, the evaporator coil will drop the temperature around itself until it falls below freezing. This causes the condensation on the coil to freeze, forming ice.

Problems Caused by Ice

If the ice on the coil is not removed quickly enough, the weight of it can actually warp the coil. This will mean that the coil requires replacing. The ice can also spread down the refrigerant line to other parts of the system, like the compressor coil, and cause further breakdowns. This is why you need to call for professional repairs as soon as you notice ice on your air conditioner. Otherwise, you could be dealing with some very costly repairs.

If you need air conditioner repairs, call Cliffs Air Conditioning and Heating, Inc. We provide air conditioning repairs throughout Port Charlotte, FL.