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Old 04-25-2011, 07:52 PM   #1
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Hey all, I just bought a house a few months ago and now that its warming up we cranked the A/C up. I may have encountered a problem, but I'm not sure.

I have a little frost on this little valve(?) thing that's attached to a pipe that goes inside the house. The pipe insulation on the pipe was dry rotted and the whole thing was icing up. I replaced the insulation but the little valve or whatever it is is still frosting. Its a pretty thin layer, but I don't know if it may indicate a larger problem? Pics below -





Thanks in advance for any help!

My images seem to be broken..strange - here are direct links:

http://img195.imageshack.us/i/img20110425203913.jpg
http://img651.imageshack.us/i/img20110425203921.jpg

Last edited by Toastx86; 04-25-2011 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:09 PM   #2
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Low freon, dirty condenser coil, dirty evaporator coil or leak.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:13 PM   #3
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Thanks a bunch, sounds like pro territory. I'll see if I can't figure out a way to fix it but I think im gonna end up callin the repair man.

(also, any idea what that part that's icing up is called so I don't sound like a total moron when I call em?)

Thanks again!
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:20 PM   #4
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


First of all make sure your air filter is clean and all your vents are open. Lack of air flow will cause it to freezeup. That line is called the suction line if you need to call for service.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:27 PM   #5
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Quote:
Originally Posted by JJboy View Post
Low freon, dirty condenser coil, dirty evaporator coil or leak.
Low refrigerant charge, or a dirty air filter or evap(indoor coil), or other indoor air flow restriction. A dirty condenser coil won't cause a freeze up.



OP, shut it off until you check the air filter and evap coil. if they are not the cause, leave it off until a tech can check the charge.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:31 PM   #6
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


JJ carefully think about how a dirty condensor could cause it to ice up ( it cannot). You need to seriously understand the fundamentals of refrigeration. If you don't understand then I/we will tell you but try figure it out and let me know how you come to that conclusion.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:47 PM   #7
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Thanks a bunch for the advice, my filter does look pretty dusty so I went ahead and ordered some new ones, hopefully that'll take care of it.
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:23 PM   #8
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


I think I understand the refrigerant cycle. Dirty condenser coil will increase electricity consumption. Also if the system has low freon and dirty condenser coil it won't freeze up until you clean it. I'll be more specific when I answer next time.
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:45 PM   #9
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


Yah, the are some techs out there that don't like newbies and just like to jump on them and not help them so I don't want you to get clobbered. Being precise and having all the facts is very important unless you like being clobbered.
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Old 04-26-2011, 08:43 AM   #10
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


So I poked around a bit last night. I tried vacuuming out my filter because I'm impatient, seemed to take longer to freeze but it still froze (and that could just be my perception, I didn't time it or anything). But I also noticed a lot of air blowing out around the box in my utility closet. The box I'm referring to sits next to my water heater and there are 3 PVC pipes that come out on the front of it, 2 vertical large pipes and one smaller horizontal pipe. It seemed that a lot of the air was coming out around the middle pipe (one of the two large vertical pipes). It wasn't just like a slow leak, air was forcefully blowing out of this thing. Is that normal? (the air flow out of the vents on the second floor also seems poor, could this be related?)

Also, the fiter seems like it was installed simply by cutting a slot into the top of the ducting that sucks air into the system. Is that normal?

Yay the joys of homeownership! :D

Thanks again all, this seems like a very helpful forum and hopefully I'll have something to contribute at some time, I'm mostly a computer guy tho.
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Old 04-26-2011, 08:57 AM   #11
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Ice on Pipe that goes from AC to Inside


the box you say is blowing air, is it the indoor coil? that is common for air to blow out from around the copper lines. you should go to a supply house like johnstone that will sell to homeowners. you can buy no rinse coil cleaner. you spray it on the dirty indoor coil and turn the a/c on after a while. the condensation will wash it off. your coil is probably very dirty because the last homeowner didnt change the filter. when that coil is dirty, it can not absorb heat from room air (thus cooling it). so the refrigerant stays cold which is why it is icing up the way it is.
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