Question about Maytag M6Y18F7A Air Conditioner

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Heat pump ice accumulation and no air flow

My heat pump PSH4BDO36K seams to be operating properly but no air is coming through the vents. There is ice accumulation on the unit, so I turned it off. When the ice melts will the air flow return?

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  • thetim May 11, 2010

    Is your filter dirty inside? how old is the unit? where is the ice accum. at?

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  • 12 Answers

Low on refrigerant is the probable cause

Posted on Sep 17, 2009

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There is a loud humming coming from outside unit, the fan is not rotating.


Your question does not include what type of system you are asking about, but the assumption is that it is a heat pump. The loud humming is the compressor running by itself while the fan is off.

This is the typical way a reasonably new heat pump operates:
There is a coil temperature sensor that initiates a defrost period to eliminate the frost/ice build up on the outdoor coil. In the defrost mode, the outdoor fan shuts off and the reversing valve in the heat pump reverses the direction of refrigerant flow to warm the outdoor coil. The same coil temperature sensor senses the temperature of the external surface of the coil and tells the defrost control when the frost is gone initiating another 'reverse cycle' to put it back into heating mode. In the heating mode, the outdoor fan runs again.

If you have the heat pump installed where snow drifts accumulate, you will have a problem extracting heat from the outdoor air, and coil frosting and freezing will be exaggerated. If you have excessive ice build up due to a defosting issue, the ice can actually stop the fan from rotating, but you would hear loud bangind and rattling for hours first as the fan blades come in contact with the ice.

If you do not have drifts, but continually have an excessive amount of ice build up, either the sensor is possibly faulty or the defrost control board is faulty. The sensor's clip could easily have been knocked loose from the coil by ice and is no longer sensing coil temperature and if so the result would be the lack of defrost initiation.

Feb 13, 2015 | Heating & Cooling

Tip

Why your unit is freezing up.


To understand why your AC or heat pump is freezing up, it helps to know how your system works.

There are 7 major parts to an AC system, 9 with a heat pump.

1 - Condenser/heat pump (The outdoor unit)
2 - Air Handler (the indoor unit unless the system is a package unit, then all is outside in one system. The air handler is usually found under the home, in an attic, or in a closet.)

In the condenser are the following major parts.

3 - Compressor
4 - Condenser coil
5 - Condenser fan
6 - (HPs only) reversing valve

In the air handler are the following major parts.

7 - Blower motor
8 - Evaporator coil
9 - (HPs only) electric heat strips

Some systems known as "dual fuel systems" use another heat source in place of the heat strips, usually a gas furnace. I will address gas furnaces in another post.

When an air conditioner is operating properly several things are taking place.

1 - The compressor is compressing or "pumping" refrigerant through the system.

2 - through changes in pressure, the refrigerant makes the evaporator coil get very cold, and the condenser coil gets very hot.

3 - The blower motor/fan circulates air across the evaporator coils, as the room temperature air (Also known as "indoor ambient") goes through the cold coil, it exits, cooled approximately 15 to 20 degrees cooler than when it entered. (In a ducted system, the blower is also the fan that circulates the air throughout the home.)

4 - The condenser fan circulates air across the condenser coils. As the outdoor air goes through the condenser coil, it removes heat from the coils that are very hot. This in turn removes heat from the refrigerant so it can run its cycle again, and through pressure changes, cool the evap coil.

5 - With a heat pump, the reversing valve reverses the flow of refrigerant in the condenser and evaporator coils.
In AC mode, the evaporator coils get cold, and the condenser coils get hot. But in heat mode, the evaporator gets very hot, and the condenser very cold.

Now, whichever coil is getting cold will freeze up if there is inadequate air flow across the coil, as the refrigerant in it is far below freezing, and there is not enough airflow to keep the humidity in the air from freezing on the coil.

Things that can cause poor airflow are,

1 - Dirty/clogged coils
2 - dirty/clogged filter (will only effect evaporator coil)
3 - Closed/blocked vents (will only effect evaporator coil)
4 - Malfunctioning or dirty fan

Low refrigerant will also cause a coil to freeze up, reduce efficiency and cause the system to run for long periods of time. Not to mention, shortening the life of the unit.

With a heat pump, in heat mode only, the condenser (outdoor) coil will routinely begin to freeze up in cold temperatures. This is due to the fact that the refrigerant is below freezing, and the cold outdoor ambient temp is not warm enough to keep the condensation in the air from freezing on the coil.

Note, a properly working AC should never freeze up.

A heat pump is equipped with defrost controls to prevent ice buildup.
Some are controlled by timers, some by temp.

When a HP is going into defrost mode, the condenser fan shuts down, the reversing valve reverses the flow of refrigerant and the once cold condenser coil now gets very hot, defrosting the coil. (Many people have said this process sounds like the unit is coming apart, or about to explode and are frightened by the "smoke" which is really just steam from melting ice that comes off the unit.)

During defrost mode, the secondary or "auxiliary" heat comes on to ensure that you are still getting warm air from the vents. (Again, this can be electric heat strips or a dual fuel system)

If you are experiencing cold air from the vents during defrost, that means your auxiliary heat is malfunctioning.

The auxiliary heat is used for three purposes.

1 - during defrost mode to maintain warm airflow (automatic)
2 - when the HP cannot maintain the set temp due to extreme outdoor temps. It comes on when the indoor temp drops several degrees below the set temp on the thermostat (automatic)
3 - For emergency heat source when the HP is not working. (Manual)

To recap....

Iced up coils?

Poor airflow
low refrigerant
Malfunctioning fan
failing defrost system


There are two things that can be done in a pinch to help de-ice frozen coils. This may get you by until the repairman can get there, or you can fix the system if you are a do-it-yourselfer.

HPs frozen outdoor coil in heat mode, not going into defrost?

Cover most of the vents, and turn the system onto cooling mode until the outdoor coil is thawed. then uncover vents and return to heat, or emergency heat. (this usually takes 15 min or less)

Frozen coils in AC mode with a heat pump?
Turn the system to heat with the thermostat on just high enough to get the system to come on. (again, usually takes 15 min or less to thaw.)

AC only, with frozen evap coils? (this can sometimes be seen frozen all the way outside to the compressor on the copper lines.)

Turn the system off, and the fan switch from "auto" to on".
This will usually defrost the coils within 1 to 2 hours.
(If your system has the furnace in line before the evap coil, turn the system to heat, and the furnace will defrost the coil within minutes.)



on Dec 25, 2008 | Carrier XHB123D X/Y Series Heat/Cool Air...

1 Answer

Little heat coming out of vents.


IF YOU CAN'T FEEL THE AIR FLOW OUT BUT YOU HEAR THE BLOWER MOTOR WORKING, BEHIND THE GLOVE BOX IS A CABIN FILTER.REPLACE FILTER
IF YOU HAVE GOOD AIR FLOW BUT NO HEAT:
1;VACUUM LEAKING TO HEATER CONTROL
2;WATER PUMP GOING BAD / NOT CIRCULATING COOLANT,HIGH RPM/MORE COOLANT TO THE HEATER CORE
3;OPEN THERMOSTAT/ENGINE TEMPERATURE TO LOW
1;CHANGE THE DIRECTION FROM VENTS TO FLOUR TO WINDSHIELD. IF NOTHING HAPPEN IS THE VACUUM
2;RUN THE ENGINE INSIDE ON WARM PLACE ON IDLE.NOTE THE GAUGE IF PAS 1/2 TO 3/4. IF PAS 3/4 MARK REPLACE WATER PUMP
3;IF GAUGE STAY BELOW 1/2 REPLACE THERMOSTAT
GOOD LUCK

Mar 27, 2014 | 2005 Dodge Neon

1 Answer

Dryer will heat up then shut off


Most likely it's getting to hot, check your vent and the outside vent hood make sure you have proper air flow. Turn on the dryer check the vent exit to make sure you feel hot air coming out. Take the vent off and check the back of the dryer for air flow. If you have air flow and the unit is still over heating you may need to replace the operating Thermostat. Could tell you more with a good model number should be inside the door.

Oct 26, 2013 | Kenmore 62602 Electric Dryer

2 Answers

Carrier heat pump iceing I replace defrost bord 3 days good works but now iceing again


Air flow

Feb 03, 2013 | Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

My carrier heat pump has frosting on the outside on it's coils. I know that it's cold outside but is that normal?


Yes it is normal especially with high humidity. The moisture freezes on the coils just like on the evaporator coils in a freezer. The heat pump will defrost itself by shutting off the fan outside and reverse the flow of refrigerant to melt the ice when it build up then switch back to normal heat. That's why at times you may feel cold air coming out of the vents in the house. The outside coils are defrosting.

Dec 16, 2010 | Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

I have a 20 year old Trane heat pump. Outside


Yes, you will want to put the unit into cooling mode to help assistance with the ice melt.

If you can, block off the outdoor coil or disconnect the outdoor fan motor. This will assist in raising the discharge pressure and temperature and thus, it will melt the ice quicker.


Or, if you have the capability, you can take a garden hose around to the unit hooked into hot water and melt the ice that way.




If your control board is messed up, why aren't you replacing it?

Jan 10, 2010 | Carrier XHB123D X/Y Series Heat/Cool Air...

1 Answer

Can somebody help,why is my Central AC blows


Most heat pumps have an auxillary heat. Many are electric auxillary heat with a heat strip in the air handler. A common malfunction is for the electric auxillary heat to operate when the heat pump is set on cool. To confirm this, locate the conductor that runs from the heat sequencer to the connection on the heat strip. You will see this on the top section of the air handler. Use the clamp on part of the amp meter over that wire. If the thermostat is set on cool and the heat strip is drawing amps, it means the heat is coming on while the heat pump is set on cool. There is usually one or two causes for this, either the sequencer is bad or there is low voltage wires usually behind the thermostat or in the air handler closet that are touching that shouldn't be touching.

If this is not the case, if its not a problem of where the heat is coming on with the air conditioner, it could be a case of the reversing valve malfunctioning. The way a heat pump works is it reverses the flow of the refridgerant. For instance, many heat pumps the reversing valve is activated in cool. That would mean that there is a low voltage circuit that activates the reversing valve when the heat pump is in cool. I'm not sure what model/brand your heat pump is, Goodman and Janitrol for instance, the heat pump reversing valve is activated in cool. In any case, if the reversing valve is not operating properly, when the air conditioning is set to cool it will actually be heating. Or you could set it to heat and it may actually be cooling instead of heating. Please check these two items first and if you have any further questions, please let me know. Especially if you know of any additional problems like the evaporater is icing up or if the air handler fan is not operating when it should.

Aug 31, 2009 | Heating & Cooling

2 Answers

18 year old Janitrol Heat Pump freezing up.


i would get someone to check your refrigerant levels have you ever had the evaporator coil flushed and cleaned? proper refrigerant levels and proper airflow across coils are extremley important not to scare you but 18 yrs is a long time on a heat pump 9-12 years is the point where they really loose there efficiency going for a newer one would probably cut your operating cost in half if not more depending where you live there are a lot of people not familiar with heat pumps so i suggest finding a company that specializes in them to service your unit

Jul 30, 2009 | Ruud UBHC Air Conditioner

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