What Signs Will My HVAC Have if it’s Leaking Freon or has a Refrigerant Leak?

October 28, 2019

What Should I Do If My AC Is Leaking Freon?

What Should I Do If My AC Is Leaking Freon?A common issue your air conditioning system can experience as it ages is a refrigerant leak. The refrigerant is called freon there are two common types. R22 is being phased out and 410A. The HVAC system works to cool your home by removing warm air from within your home and transfer it outside. Freon is not supposed to leak, but for various reasons, freon can begin to leak and will cause performance and efficiency issues.

Keep in mind that you should never have to refill or top of the refrigerant in your air conditioning system. Unlike gas or oil, refrigerant never runs dry—rather, your AC system continuously circulates it throughout your home.

Freon leaks are typical though tiny holes and take weeks or months to show. Once a hole develops it slowly grows. The extreme is if the weld breaks you will notice within days, this can happen if the outdoor freon lines are hit by a gardening implement, or in an attic, if someone steps/ hits Freon line. This can overstress a weld and cause it to fail.

How Will You Know If Your Freon Level is Low?

How Will You Know If Your Freon Level is Low?

When your air conditioning system is low on refrigerant, it won’t produce as much cool air as it usually does. You will notice there is not as much air coming out of the vents as there was a few weeks or months ago.

Ice Build-Up on Copper Lines or Evaporator Coils

AC Blowing Warm AirIce build-up on the copper lines on the unit outside. The pipes that you can see running from the condenser to the wall. Or in the attic on the evaporator coil, the sign is the copper tubes around the unit will have ice buildup on them. When your system lacks the necessary refrigerant to cool your home, the copper lines or evaporator coils cannot absorb as much heat. As a result, condensation builds up and causes the lines or coils to freeze.

AC Blowing Warm Air

Ice Build-Up on Copper Lines or Evaporator CoilsYou’ll begin to notice your home takes longer to cool down, or will not get your home to the target temperature. You have the thermostat set to cool to 72 degrees but the temperature never goes below 78 degrees and you may even feel warm air through the registers.
As your unit does not have enough refrigerant to transfer heat from inside to outside. The indoor unit has limited to no cooling capability so it will take the warm air from inside your home and blow it back out the vents.

High Electric Bills

When your air conditioning system is leaking refrigerant, your system has to work harder and longer to cool your home. You may notice your system running for longer periods than it used to or it never shuts off. As a result, your system uses more energy to move the lower amount of refrigerant to remove heat from your home which can result in high energy bills.

Refrigerant exposure can be dangerous, so if you believe your HVAC is leaking freon, contact the team at Southern Comfort Mechanical. If you have concerns about refrigerant or other AC-related questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today.

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