Low Refrigerant Charge And Premature Air Conditioner Repairs

17 February 2016
 Categories: , Blog


An air conditioner's refrigerant usually plays one of the most important roles in the system's cooling process. This is because it is the liquid refrigerant's change of state – from a liquid to a gas – that causes the cooling effect responsible for cooling the air passing over the evaporator coils. Having too little of this liquid is therefore bound to affect the functioning of the air conditioning system. Here are some of the ways through which having a low refrigerant charge can lead to premature air conditioner repairs.

Air conditioning system's lifespan

When there is too little refrigerant in an air conditioning system, there is usually a reduction in the efficiency with which the unit cools a given space. This is mainly because of the effect that too little refrigerant has on the evaporator coils.

Under normal operations, the liquid refrigerant is usually under low pressure when it arrives at the cooling coil area. The low pressure usually forms an environment that is conducive enough for the refrigerant to absorb heat from the air passing over the cooling coils, a process that then causes it to change from a liquid into a gas.

However, when the air conditioning system is low on refrigerant, the refrigerant usually arrives at the evaporator coil region at too low a pressure. The resulting cooling effect given off by the refrigerant under these circumstances is usually enough not only to condense moisture from the air passing over the coils, but also to freeze it. This then leads to coil icing complications that eventually reduce the efficiency with which your system will cool your home.

Reduced cooling efficiency usually means that the air conditioning system dumps into your home won't be as cold as it should be. The system will therefore have to take longer in order to get your home's temperature to the desired level. This overworking of the system will accelerate the rate at which the unit's parts deteriorate, something that will have you worrying about repairs way earlier than you should.

Damaged compressor motor

While it usually takes time for a homeowner to feel the financial heat of accelerated wear and tear, compressor motor damage is something that he or she may have to deal with early on.

Low refrigerant usually causes compressor motor damage in air conditioning systems that rely on the refrigerant to cool the motor. This is because having too little of the refrigerant in the system leads to a cooling system that is too ineffective to cool the compressor motor. This then causes the motor to overheat. And if the system continues to run under these circumstances, the compressor motor may end up getting completely damaged. Replacing it may then be the only way of getting your air conditioning system running again.

For air conditioning repair, contact a company such as American Heating & Air.