It is not uncommon to have a frozen air conditioner. The finely tuned mechanism that helps a unit avoid this can get bogged down by several issues that lead to overcooling. Just like any extreme, this is not good for the system. It makes work harder for the individual components and could lead to eventual damage if continued to operate under this condition. Understanding why this sort of thing happens is the first step towards prevention.
Slow Fan Speed
When the cold refrigerant reaches the evaporator coil, the air around it will begin to cool as well. The cool air needs to be blown into the room by the fans to lower the indoor temperature. This blowing action also prevents the coils from freezing over because of overcooling. If the speed of the fan blades is inadequate, then things might get too cold that the coils become frozen. Try to increase the speed of rotation to avoid this. If the fans are busted, call for repairs immediately.
Air Filter Blockage
Air filters are designed to block dirt and dust while allowing enough air to pass at a decent rate. After all, airflow is a necessary element in the heat transfer mechanism of the entire system. The buildup of dirt should be monitored as too much can hinder airflow. If there is not much hot air flowing into the system, then the coils can easily freeze up. Efficiency will also suffer. Change the filters every couple of months depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations, the level of air pollution in the area, and the kind of filter being used.
Holes around the system will cause the refrigerant to leak out slowly into the atmosphere. Old air conditioners contributed to global warming due to the destruction of the ozone layer by CFCs. New refrigerants are not as harmful to the environment but leaks are still a problem because they can cause units to freeze up. They need to be found and fixed right away. Technicians will then have to replace the lost refrigerant to get things back up to the optimum level.