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Fall is quickly settling on West Palm Beach, Florida, but it’s not quite cool enough to turn off the air conditioner. But one day, you return from work to a muggy home. You ask yourself, “Why didn’t my programmed AC kick on?” Then you check the system, surveying the indoor and outdoor components. And you find a thin layer of frost covering your refrigerant line. Whether from a leak or problems with your evaporator coil, you should address frozen refrigerant pipes as quickly as possible. Here’s why.

Refrigerant Leak

As with many HVAC problems, there isn’t one universal cause of frozen refrigerant pipes. However, you can reasonably narrow it down to two common causes: refrigerant leaks and frozen evaporator coils.

Leaks in poorly sealed or damaged refrigerant piping will release the freezing refrigerant. This will quickly frost pipes and prevent your HVAC system from running properly.

Frozen Evaporator Coil

You may also have frozen refrigerant pipes because your system’s evaporator coil is frozen. Most often caused by either low amounts of refrigerant or limited airflow to the coil, refrigerant running through the coil can get too cold and freeze up the entire coil. That freezing refrigerant proceeds to flow back to the outdoor unit. It’s so cold that it freezes the moisture in the surrounding air.

What to Do When You Find Frozen Pipes

Since the Florida heat won’t warm the coil and pipes, what can you possibly do? First, turn off your AC and turn the fan setting to “On.” This should thaw the evaporator coil and prevent further damage to the compressor. Next, call your local HVAC service technician to conduct maintenance and improve airflow around the coil or seal leaks.

Fix frozen pipes, and you’ll not only increase comfort in your home but also prevent further damage to the system. If you’ve found frost on your pipes, fix your system today by calling Mechanical Air at 561-899-4587.

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