Why Is There Frost on My Air Conditioner?

Frost and frozen condensate build-up rank among the most common air conditioning problems reported in Orlando, FL, which can seem counter-intuitive on the surface. “Doesn’t frost build-up mean that it’s really cold?” When you add Orlando’s famous humidity to the mix – creating condensation on AC units that can easily frost over – it seems almost like a natural state of affairs. In truth, however, frost on your air conditioner represents a serious problem, and the longer you let it go, the worse it gets. The answer to the question “why is their frost on my air conditioner?” explains a great deal.

It’s the Chemistry

Air conditioning systems rely on refrigerant to cool the air. Liquid refrigerant under high pressure enters the evaporator coils, where it shifts into gaseous form. The process pulls heat from the air around the coils, which can then be blown into your home with a fan. That process relies on specific amounts of refrigerant. When levels are too low – thanks to a leak or similar problem – then the cooling process is knocked off-balance and frost forms on the surface of the evaporator coils.

Why Is This a Problem?

In the first place, that frost represents cooling power that isn’t going into your home: forcing your air conditioner to work harder than it should to do the same basic job. Even worse, the frost forms an insulating layer between the refrigerant and the air it’s supposed to cool, creating even more strain on the system. Simply scraping the frost off won’t help: the leak needs to be sealed and the refrigerant recharged to its appropriate levels for the issue to be resolved. Otherwise, you’ll pay more than you have to for cool air and the added strain will likely cause more serious mechanical failures requiring serious attention to resolve.

If you notice frost on your air conditioner, or even if your bills are a little higher than they should be, then give the professionals at Certified Air Systems Inc., a call!


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