How Long Can AC Run Before Freezing: Caring for Your Machine

Have you ever wondered how long can AC run before freezing? Some homeowners are worried that they have abused their AC by keeping it running too much. Some, however, are concerned that their ACs aren’t running enough. Whereas most homeowners have never experienced a frozen AC, it’s basically a common (and also pretty normal) thing that can happen to all ACs.

How the AC Works

When you have an AC, the refrigerant within the evaporator coil will expand so it will cool down. When it leaves the AC unit, it cools the air within your house, removing the hot air effectively from the house.

As the refrigerant expands within the evaporator coil of air conditioning units, it cools down the air in your home, making it more comfortable and keeping your home cool during hot days.

However, when there is something wrong with the AC, the entire system is disturbed. The evaporator oil would ‘allow’ the refrigerant to have too much cooling effect, making it fall below the level of freezing. As a result, ice would form.

how long can ac run before freezing

How Many Hours Should an AC Run per Day?

There are different opinions about how long the AC should run. Some people say that modern ACs are basically stronger than old ones. It means that the AC can run continuously 24/7 if needed. However, if you keep your AC running non-stop, you will have to check it regularly. You need to make sure that you maintain it on a regular basis if you want it to run properly and well.

Some others say that AC can run for 16 hours a day (within 24 hours of the window). It’s based on the assumption that the machine should run for around 70% of its capacity. Others, however, say that 12 hours would be the maximum time for the operational time.

This time window would be more appropriate to ensure that your air conditioner stays in good shape and it can function normally.

So, how long should your AC run on a daily basis? Basically, there is no strict ruling about it. But you shouldn’t forget that AC is only helpful in making you feel cooler fast. It’s always better to let the natural air flow into the house. Don’t forget that natural air circulation is crucial to maintaining good living conditions in a natural way. Moreover, if the house already feels cool, it would be a good idea to turn your AC off.

Running your AC for extended periods can impact your energy bills. It’s important to have your thermostat set correctly to avoid overuse and maintain efficient unit operation.

Read also: Why Air Conditioner Keeps Running When Turned Off?

Cool (Summer) Nights

In some cases, many homeowners wonder how long can AC run before freezing even at night. Even in summer months, the temperature at night can drop quite significantly. Most ACs are calibrated for a certain optimum temperature level.

When the nights are colder than the temperature level, it would be quite logical if the AC is frozen. If this happens to you, no worries. There are ways to deal with it.

You can program the thermostat so it can run on itself automatically. In the setting, program the AC to deactivate when the temperature goes below 60 degrees. Even if you don’t have a programmable thermometer, you can still do this manually.

Check and monitor the temperature. If you know that it’s going below 60 degrees, turn the AC off. It’s better to let the cool breeze inside the house.

For those with central air systems, programming the thermostat for shorter run times, around 20 minutes for instance, can help circulate air effectively without overworking the system.

Possibility of Freezing Issue

If you want to check whether your AC is having a freezing issue, check its supply registers. If it’s warm, it’s a good sign that the evaporator coils are frozen. You should open its panel and see whether it has ice or not. The absence of ice doesn’t always mean that the freezing issue doesn’t happen. However, the existence of ice is a right-on clue that you have a frozen AC unit.

Read also: What Causes an Air Conditioner to Freeze Up?

Air Flow Blockage

AC must have constant airflow so the humidity won’t settle on the coils, causing them to freeze. To make sure that there is no blockage of airflow, check the air filters. They shouldn’t be dirty or clogged. Don’t forget to change them regularly. It’s also a good idea to maintain and care for your AC by having regular checks.

Read also: How To Tell if AC is Frozen? Learn the Signs

Regular maintenance of air conditioning systems is crucial. This includes ensuring the air conditioning services are performed on time and that the AC unit is of the proper size for your space. A well-sized unit not only cools your home in the summer but also helps keep it warm in the winter by maintaining balanced indoor temperatures.

Gravatar Image
AirconMag is an experienced author and Air Conditioner expert. With years of practical experience in the field authored several informative articles on various aspects of AC unit, including installation, maintenance, and repair