5 Common Causes of an Air Conditioner Frozen Pipe Outside

Malfunctioning electronics often have an underlying cause. Identifying the signs of improper function can be the difference between substantial repair expenses, replacements, or reinstallation. In terms of an air condition frozen pipe outside the concern may be the compressor, the coolant, or any one of the myriad of mechanisms running the air conditioning operation.

Fortunately, understanding the underlying causes is quite simple. This article targets said information and also poses the solutions. For instance calling experts at Diamond Flame Mechanical, INC. when air conditioner pipes are frozen is an excellent action plan.

Did You Know?

The majority of families spend $2,000 every year on their energy bills, with half of that going toward keeping the house cool or warm states bookcleango.com

To prevent additional expenses on air conditioning repairs and subsequent HVAC replacement it is crucial to identify problems through early indications.

Air Conditioners Are Complex Machines: One of the Following can be Causes of an Air Conditioner Frozen Pipe Outside

Before diving into the complexities of frozen pipes and pondering why my air conditioner is frozen inside, it is crucial to understand that like most home appliances air conditioners are also a sum of various components, namely;

  1. Compressor and Condensation Coils

The compressor compresses the refrigerant and the condensation coils release the heat that the unit absorbs from indoors.

  1. Evaporator coil and Expansion tube or Capillary Coil

Have you ever found your AC unit’s air conditioner evaporator coil frozen? If so then understand its primary function. This coil absorbs the heat from indoors as the refrigerant in the unit evaporates during the cooling process. At the same time, the expansion tube or capillary coil regulates the refrigerant in the evaporator coil.

  1. Blower/Fan and Air Filter 

The blower/fan helps circulate the air in the indoor unit. This happens over the evaporator coil, which sends the air to the outside unit to dissipate. This can also cause air condition frozen pipe outside eventually. The air filter as the name suggests ensures clean air enters the indoor environment.

  1. Refrigerant

This is probably why you’ve found your air conditioner unit frozen. This substance circulates through the air conditioning unit absorbing and dissipating hot and cold air.

  1. Insulation System

This mechanism helps maintain the temperature indoors and the refrigerant. 

5 Ways to Identify Whether Your Air Conditioner Pipes Are Frozen

Like any home appliance, HVAC features and air conditioning units have telltale signs of a malfunction. Before, these became evident knowing what to keep an eye out for can prevent the need for major expenditures as well as discomfort on a hot day.

Here’s a list  of signs that can help identify the need for repair in an air conditioning unit especially if it is a frozen pipe situation

  • You can see ice on the pipes that are connected to the outdoor unit
  • The airflow from the vents is noticeably low
  • The air is warm instead of being cold
  • Water or ice is falling from the indoor unit
  • Noises from the air conditioner each time it’s turned on
  1. Ice on Pipes

The pipes from the outdoor unit connected to the indoor installment are the first to show signs of an air conditioner line frozen. inspect this frequently to prevent problems.

  1. Air Flow from Vents

This may be because the ice that builds up on the evaporator coils obstructs the airflow and makes it noticeably low. 

  1. Warm Air Instead of Cold

In the case of frozen pipes, the air inside becomes warm, or the cooling isn’t as efficient as it should be. This is due to improper heat exchange and can be the leading cause of serious damage to the evaporator coil placed in the indoor unit. For optimal performance, consider using the right furnace filter. For that, consult with an expert about the range of furnace filters such as HEPA filters and fiberglass, as there are different types of furnaces filters to ensure excellent air quality and better performance. 

  1. Leakage

This is a sure-fire sign that you have an air condition frozen pipe outside. You will notice that the indoor unit is either dripping or that it is throwing out ice. The same applies to the outdoor pipes that connect the indoor and outdoor units.

  1. A Noisy/Smelly Air Conditioner

If the air conditioning unit is malfunctioning it may start making weird noises or smelling pungent each time it is turned on. If so, make sure to address the problem immediately by getting quality hvac service before it stops cooling completely.

Frozen Air Conditioning Pipes can Cause Higher Energy Bills

If you find your air conditioner evaporator coil frozen quite frequently then you will also see an upward trend in the energy consumption of your home. Frozen pipes or coils restrict airflow which can cause build-up that affects the capacity of the compressor to use designated energy to operate. Here’s what happens when an air conditioner isn’t working properly

  1. Compromised Efficiency

If the AC unit isn’t functioning adequately it is bound to take longer than usual to cool down a space. This leaves the unit running for longer, thus adding to the energy consumption.

  1. Cannot Maintain Temperature

To maintain a desired temperature, the unit must perform optimally to ensure adequate cooling. However, if the components work efficiently, it becomes difficult for the AC to reach and maintain the desired temperature.

  1. Damaged Parts Means More Expenses

When air conditioner pipes are frozen, they tend to affect other components in the machine. For instance, the compressor and the coils become the first parts to be affected, thus leading to a complete breakdown over time or a need for replacement.

What to Do if You Find an Air Conditioner Frozen Pipe Outside

Now that you have identified the signs that your air conditioning unit is frozen, it’s time to find the right solution for it. 

  • Turn it off
  • Turn the fan mode on
  • Clean and check the filters
  • Check the refrigerant levels
  • Call professionals
  1. Turn it Off Immediately

If the pipes are frozen and the AC unit is still running it can cause permanent damage to the coil and compressor. These are major components of the unit and as such are quite expensive to replace or repair.

  1. Try the Fan Mode

In some units turning on the fan mode can help melt the ice quickly and you can move forward with regular servicing to ensure the unit is operational with the fear of finding the air conditioner evaporator coil frozen.

  1. The Filters May Need Cleaning

This is a common yet recurring concern. Once you find the air filters clogged with dust and debris you can wash them off to use the AC unit without a problem. 

  1. The Refrigerant Levels May Be the Concern

If the refrigerant isn’t adequate it does not flow as needed through the coils. This can cause ice build-up on the pipes. In the case of low refrigerant, it is best to call in a professional.

  1. Professional Help is Non-Negotiable

Are your Air conditioner pipes frozen? It’s time to call in the experts! Qualified technicians at Diamond Flame Mechanical, INC can inspect, identify, and solve any air conditioning concerns or problems you may have with the HVAC system Kit.

For all your HVAC and air conditioning concerns give them a call at 408-834-2404 or email us at [email protected]

Frequently Asked Questions:

Dealing with machinery in general is a hassle, and sometimes the answers aren’t as complicated as the machinery itself. Therefore, to address some of your concerns as an air conditioning unit user, read on:

Question 1: Is a frozen air conditioner something to be worried about?

Answer: Not at all. The above article highlights the common causes of this and how to remedy them. In most cases identifying problems on time can reduce the repair time and costs substantially!

Question 2: Is regular air conditioner maintenance necessary?

Answer: The experts at  Diamond Flame Mechanical, INC recommend regular maintenance based on the type, age, and operation of your air conditioning unit. Get in touch with an expert and book an inspection to understand how and when to service the unit for optimal performance.

Question 3: My air conditioner is frozen, are dirty filters responsible?

Answer: Yes, they may be the problem. The airflow restriction over the evaporator coils can make them extremely cold leading to ice buildup. In case regular cleaning isn’t enough you may need more than hvac maintenance. For this call to the professionals.

Question 4: What to do if the air conditioning pipes keep freezing despite maintenance?

Answer: If the problem persists, despite clean filters it’s time to call in HVAC professionals who can identify and fix the underlying problem for good! In some cases, if the unit is old you may need to replace certain parts of the unit. The coil or the pipes are usually the problem.

Question 5: Is it possible to melt the ice if we find the air conditioner unit frozen?

Answer: Yes, you can turn the fan mode on and it will speed up the process. However, it usually takes 3 to 4 hours to completely melt away. Make sure the ice is completely melted before you clean out the filters or try to repair the unit. 

Question 6: Should I consider an hvac zoning system kit for my home?

Answer: Yes, you can go for an hvac zoning system kit if your home has varying heating and cooling needs across different areas. In fact, it’s an ideal choice for large homes, multi-story houses, buildings, and homes that have different temperature needs.