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Don’t Try to Scrape That Ice off the AC Coils!

frozen-acIf you’re reading this, it’s because you already know that ice forming along the indoor evaporator coils of your air conditioning system is a bad thing. We’re glad to hear it. Too many homeowners make the mistake of thinking that ice appearing on the coils is just a normal part of how an air conditioner runs. It’s not. When you see ice or frost on the coils, it means something is wrong with the AC’s ability to draw heat from the air.

However, the solution to this problem isn’t scraping the ice from the coils. No matter what tool you’re thinking of using to remove the ice, please put it away. A frozen coil requires calling for air conditioning repair in Staten Island, NY from professionals.

Scraping away ice can damage the coils

The first reason you shouldn’t try to scrape the ice off the AC is that you risk bending and damaging the coils themselves. Modern air conditioning coils are made from aluminum and are thin to allow for the easiest and most efficient transfer of heat to the refrigerant flowing through them. Taking a crude approach of scraping ice off them the same way you’d scrape frost and ice from a car window can mean permanent coil damage and an expensive repair to replace them.

“Well, what about a hair dryer?”

That will remove the ice without damaging the coil—but this goes right into our second point.

Removing the ice won’t solve the underlying problem

Ice on the coil is both a problem and a symptom. Although ice blocks the coil from adequately absorbing heat and thus triggering even more ice, the ice doesn’t start to appear from nowhere. There are a number of problems that can lead to icing along the coil, and they need to be solved or else the ice will just come right back.

  • Refrigerant is leaking from the air conditioner. Ice on the coil is one of the major warning signs that this trouble is occurring, and it’s something that has to be solved ASAP or it can end up causing permanent damage to the system.
  • The airflow through the HVAC system is blocked or restricted in some way. When there’s less warm air moving across the coil, the coil will remain too cold and start leading to ice. This could be as simple a trouble as a clogged air filter or a more serious issue such as fan problems.
  • The condensate lines are clogged up. When this happens, the amount of moisture inside the AC around the evaporator coil will increase, and when there’s more moisture there’s more water that can freeze up.

With the exception of changing a clogged air filter, all of these problems require a professional to fix. You also want professionals to handle defrosting the coil so that it’s done safely.

Our air conditioning professionals can take care of any frozen coil problem your AC may run into this summer.

Bob Mims Heating & Air Conditioning has served Staten Island’s Heating and A/C needs since 1955. Let us rescue that frozen AC!

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