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Why Is There Frost on My Air Conditioner?

Air conditioning systems are designed to keep us cool, which is serious business here in Hamilton, OH. Our Midwest summers can get quite uncomfortable, with high temperatures and higher humidity being the norm. Homeowners who notice frost on their air conditioning system may not think that anything is amiss. In fact, however, the presence of frost or ice signals a significant problem, requiring professional help to address it. “Why is there frost on my air conditioner?” you ask. Simply put, because your air conditioner is malfunctioning.

Wasted Cooling Power

Ice and frost usually appear on the evaporator coils, which is the point in the system where the air is actually cooled. Liquid refrigerant enters the coils under high pressure, where it evaporates into gaseous form. The process pulls heat from the air surrounding the coils, cooling it down significantly. That air can then be blown into your home via a fan. When refrigerant levels are lower than they should be or the system is otherwise malfunctioning, that process is curtailed. As a result, frost forms on the evaporator coils, representing cooling power that should be going into your house.

Higher Costs

What does that mean in practical terms? Lost cooling power wastes energy, which means your air conditioner needs to work harder in order to do its job. As a result, your monthly bills will go up, and the added strain increases the chances of a more serious breakdown in the future. Indeed, the frost actually serves as an insulator between the refrigerant and air it’s supposed to cool, compounding the trouble and further increasing the risk of needing air conditioning repairs.

Scraping the ice off won’t work – it doesn’t solve the problem and you may damage the coils in the process. Instead, call upon the experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling to pinpoint the source of the issue and ensure that it’s fixed in time for summer!

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