It’s the middle of summer, and the heat is unbearable! You come home from a long day at work, turn on your air conditioner, and find it’s not working. Upon checking, you notice ice forming inside the unit. So, what do you do?
When it comes to maintaining your air conditioner, nothing is more frustrating than dealing with a frozen unit. Frozen air conditioners usually take as fast as an hour up to 24 hours to de-freeze, depending on the ice formed within the unit.
But before you call for an HVAC technician, you can do some of the following beforehand. In this blog post, we’ll show you some expert tips on how to unfreeze your air conditioner unit.
How Long Does It Take To Deice An Air Conditioner?
Defreezing your air conditioner will take an hour to a day, and the results will vary depending on the amount of ice accumulated within the unit.
To determine how long it will take to defrost your system thoroughly, you must first understand how an air conditioner works. An air conditioner has an evaporator coil responsible for absorbing heat from the air inside your home.
This heat is then transferred to the condenser coil, which releases the heat outside. When your air conditioner is frozen, this process is interrupted, and the coils cannot do their job correctly.
As a result, your air conditioner will blow out warm air instead of cool air. If you notice that your air conditioner is blowing out warm air, this is a sign that the system is frozen, and you will need to take action.
Steps To Deice Your Air Conditioner
As you’re waiting for your unit to thaw out, there are a few key things you should keep an eye out for.
Step 1: Turn off your air conditioner
If you see any visible ice forming within the unit, turn the AC immediately. If it uses a USB port, disconnect it as well, and doing so will prevent further damage to your unit.
Step 2: Check for any blockages.
Once you’ve turned off the AC, check for any blockages around the unit. Make sure that nothing is blocking the vents or airflow. If there are, remove them and clear the area around the AC unit.
Take the air filter out and see if it requires cleaning or replacement. It may be why your system is frozen in the first place.
Step 3: Check the fan
In some cases, the fan could be why your system is frozen. Check to see if the fan is working sufficiently. If it isn’t, this could be causing the coils to freeze.
Visible debris like molds and dust accumulated on the fan’s surface could be keeping it from efficiently operating. Take out the fan and clean it with a brush or cloth. You can also use a vacuum cleaner to remove debris stuck in the fan blades.
Step 4: Assess the air conditioner’s interior.
Dust and debris build-up within its interior could be adding to the problem. Check the unit’s interior and see if any dirt or debris needs to be cleaned out.
Use a brush or cloth to wipe down the surfaces. You can also use a vacuum cleaner with a soft attachment to remove dirt and debris.
Step 5: Turn on the AC again.
Once you’ve checked for any blockages, turn on the AC unit again. If it’s still blowing out warm air, wait a few hours and check back. The ice should have melted by then, and your unit should be back to normal.
If the AC unit is still frozen after following these steps, it’s best to call a professional for help. An AC repair technician will be able to diagnose the problem and fix it quickly.
After following the steps, here are a few expert guidelines you can do to evaluate the situation further.
Check that the drain pan isn’t overflowing. Suppose water has collected and is starting to leak out outside your unit. In that case, you need to address this issue immediately by either adding more water or by using appropriate tools to clear the clog.
Once your unit is thawed out, it’s crucial to prevent this from happening again. One way to do this is by making sure that the area around your air conditioner is well-ventilated. You can do this by trimming any bushes or shrubs that might be blocking the airflow.
Additionally, you can clear out any debris accumulated around the unit. This will help ensure that your air conditioner has enough air flow and prevent it from freezing again.
It’s also good to invest in a weatherproof cover for your air conditioner. This will protect it from any debris or leaves that might fall and block the vents. A cover will also protect it from the elements and help extend its lifespan.
Another way to prevent your unit from freezing is by using a fan to circulate the air around the coils. It will help keep the coils from getting too cold and will help prevent the unit from freezing over again.
Smaller units will likely unfreeze faster than larger ones, and minor ice jams melt more quickly than denser blockages.
Additionally, while your air conditioner is in its melting phase, be aware of any strange odors or leaking fluids that could indicate another problem with your system. It may mean a Freon leak, in which case you’ll want to call an HVAC technician right away.
You may also assess for any faulty wiring. Upon taking out the unit, you can check the wiring to see if any of it is burnt. If it is, the wires need to be fixed as soon as possible by a professional.
Faulty wiring is not only a fire hazard but could also cause your unit to overheat and freeze again in the future. You should also address any visible damages as soon as possible. If you see any cracks or holes, this needs to be mended right away by a professional to prevent any further damage to your unit.
By addressing these issues right away and keeping an eye on your air conditioner’s progress as it thaws out. Just remember to take some preventative measures to ensure that this doesn’t happen again!