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Home > HVAC > Why Does My Air Conditioner Have Ice On It?

Why Does My Air Conditioner Have Ice On It?


Have you noticed any odd sounds from your air conditioner recently? If it sounds like chunks of ice dropping in your air conditioner, turn off your cooling system and contact QRC immediately.

Also, if you’ve noticed water dripping from your air conditioning system from the inside and your system’s drip pan is full or even overflowing, you could have ice in your air conditioning system that is melting.

*Note that if water is dripping on the outside of your air conditioner, that’s normal. Condensing vapors in your air conditioning system leads water to develop inside, which is drained on the outside of the system.

How does ice get inside my AC system?

Ice can sneak into your air conditioning unit a few different ways. It could be as simple as a dirty filter or more complex than that. Regardless, you should call a professional to diagnose and repair the problem to ensure that you’re not making a false diagnosis.

Here are a few scenarios that cause ice to form in/on your air conditioner:

Refrigerant Leak
Ice forming on your air conditioner can be an indicator that the system is lacking refrigerant. And if your air conditioning system needs refrigerant, then it’s likely that there’s a leak that needs to be sealed. You can’t just keep adding refrigerant as a “quick fix” (not to mention its expensive and harmful to the environment) Your problems will continue and get worse. If you believe this is causing ice to form on your air conditioning unit, set up an appointment with a QRC technician today so they can seal your refrigerant leak.

Dirty Evaporator Coil
If your air conditioner’s evaporator coils are dirty, this can also cause ice to form. As soon as you notice ice and can pinpoint that your evaporator coil is dirty, you must switch the entire cooling system off. Continuing to run the system can cause more damage to your evaporator coil and other parts of the heating and cooling system. Don’t be tricked into thinking it’s okay to keep running it because the AC is still working – it’s causing damage to your system and sucking up much more electricity than usual. Call a professional technician to handle this!

A few other reasons ice may form on your heating and cooling system:

  • Clogs in air conditioning system
  • Dirty filter
  • Poor airflow
  • Fan or fan motor issues
  • Running the air conditioning when outside temperature is less than 65 degrees
  • Blocked drainage system
  • Broken / damaged valves
  • Issues with thermostat


While this post is a good way to troubleshoot what may be wrong with your air conditioning system if you notice ice – we do NOT encourage you to attempt to fix any of these problems yourself. Immediately shut off your heating and cooling system, then call QRC so we can send a professional technician out to fix the problem with your air conditioning system.