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Tell-Tale Signs Your Air Conditioner Is Low On Refrigerant

As the temperature rises during the summer months, you need a reliable air conditioning system to keep your home cool. An air conditioning system that is low on refrigerant is a common issue that needs to be addressed immediately. Since your air conditioning units do not consume the refrigerant, the only reason you need more refrigerant is when it starts to leak.

When adding refrigerant to your air conditioning unit becomes more frequent, it is a sign that your AC system has problems. It might have to do with putting extra stress on your compressor or there is excessive condensation in your indoor coil. If these problems are left unaddressed, they can lead to early air conditioning system replacement. A leaking system must be corrected early to prevent bigger problems. There are three signs you need to watch out for that will help you identify if your AC system has refrigerant issues:

1. It blows warm air.

Your refrigerant is low if it blows warm air. The leak can be significant but if you are not home to make an observation, the leaks may freeze over. It is only when your refrigerant starts to drop so low that you will find out that it is not producing any cold air. You need to call an HVAC contractor to have the problem checked as early as possible. The contractor will conduct an initial inspection and provide you with the right solution to the leak.

2. Ice starts to form.

For your AC to function efficiently, it should have a proper amount of refrigerant and airflow. These two important factors will prevent the coil from freezing over. If the unit lacks pressure to ensure that the temperature is above freezing, the problem will impact your refrigerant.

You may not be aware of the problem until the ice begins to form on the outdoor system. If there is no air coming out of the unit’s registers,  this is also a sign that there is a problem with your refrigerant. The ice starts forming inside your unit. When the evaporator coil starts freezing over, the unit will be blocked from blowing cool air. This will result in producing more ice causing your evaporator coil to become a solid block of ice. The blockage slows proper airflow.

The ice travels the unit’s refrigerant lines. It will work its way to your outdoor unit where ice will form eventually. Once you see ice forming on your refrigerant lines, you need to check your air filter immediately. It might not be always an issue with your refrigerant. The freezing might only be caused by a dirty filter. You will find out whether it is your filter or refrigerant that is causing the problem by shutting down your unit. Thaw the ice naturally and change your filter. If your unit continues to freeze, the problem has to do with your refrigerant.

3. The unit has long run times.

While in most cases, long run times can determine the efficiency of your unit, an AC system that constantly runs could mean that you have a leak. You need to call an HVAC contractor to inspect your unit. An air conditioning system that starts to run all the time is a sign that you have a leaky refrigerant.

Contact a dependable HVAC contractor today to schedule maintenance.