Have kenmore 5020... works fin in summer time, but w/ furnace on, the coils frost up after a short time of running... the house is at 68-70 when I turn it on... not sure how to take off the front cover and clean the coils.. and other ideas?
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Re: humidifier coils freeze
I believe a dehumidifier is supposed to operate in temps above 60 degrees. Even though your house is warmer than that, the air entering the dehimidifier may be getting into that range due to it being on a basement level etc. This is perfectly normal and is not a malfunction with your humidifier.
Your options are to either place the dehumidifier closer to a heat source in order to keep the air which is entering warmer. (I've even heard of someone placing a light bulb in front the unit during winter to warm the air slightly as it enters). Because the dehumidifier's coils get cold in order for it to collect moisture from the air, if they are freezing, giving the unit a rest for a few hours every few hours may allow the coils to thaw in between and prevent them from reaching freezing temperatures while running. You could use a timer to accomplish this, but you'll want to insure that it's a commercial grade timer in order to handle the electrical draw that the dehumidifier requires.
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Often times, a clogged filter will cause them to freeze up. Because, it's not getting enough air into the system to warm the coils. If you haven't cleaned the filter recently or regularly, that is more than likely the problem. Other than that, the ambient room temperature can play a role in it. If it's cooler than 41 degrees, the humidifier struggles. Same is true if it's over 93 degrees.
there is a freeze stat on the unit it connects to the evaporater coils it is suppose to shut of the compressor unit when it senses the temp is at freezing the idea is that the unit condenses moisture out of the air like your air conditioner for your house or car this part is dirty or malfunctionong
You need to determine what's "running". Here's why: There are three things that must be working to extract water. The
'coil' (a finned metal part that needs air to flow across its surface) may be filled
with dust and obstructions, so no air can move...then no water. There is a
blower motor that must move the air. If it is seized up and not blowing
air...very little or no water. The compressor creates condensation from
air moving across the coil (like the moisture than forms on an ice filled
glass on a humid day) to extract the water from the air. If it's not
working then no water. So, if there is air blowing out of the dehumidifier the blower is working. If the air is room temp the compressor is not
working. If it's real hot air, and the humidifier keeps cycling on and
off quickly, the coil is dirty. Those are the 3 things that need to be
Most dehumidifiers need warmer air to work properly. The temperature in a basement is usually 60 - 65F; too cool for standard models. You could buy a "basement" dehumidifier. They're designed to work at lower temperatures; some as low as 40 F. Costs are about the same as a standard dehumidifier; you just have to find it.
For a cheap fix, try this; it seems to be working for me.
Since the condensate coil (the one icing up) is cold, the air entering it is too cool and the condensate frosts up the coil. Additional condensate freezes to the frost and before you know it, you've got a block of ice. Since the air coming out of the front is very warm take a large piece of cardboard around 6' x 3') and form a V. Placed it in front of the dehumidifier so it channels some of the warm air back to the rear where it warms the moist air up before it hits the cooling fins. It's helped keep the ice down.
If you want something attractive, any screen that redirects some of the air back to the rear will work. Just leave the top open so it doesn't get too hot and the some of the drier air gets out into the room.
possible that the cooling fins have frosted over...this happens when a cold surface appears in a humid room that does not have enough heat to prevent the freeze-up on the fins. If you look at the fins (above the water bucket), you may see the frost. One solution is to turn up heat in room, followed by placing a fan to blow air through fins if still frosted. If you do not have a frost problem, then ensure compressor is running. If comp is running, then return dead unit.