Although air conditioners remove moisture from the air during the cooling process, with the water vapor condensing along the indoor coil, homeowners usually do not think of an AC as a system that can develop rust or other kinds of corrosion. An air conditioner is constructed so that the moisture from evaporation drips down into a condensate pan and leaves the system through a drain, keeping rust damage away from the coils.
But air conditioners can develop corrosion, and from a source people often do not consider. If an AC begins to corrode, it will need repairs immediately before the corrosion grows into a serious issue. Call Ultimate Air Conditioning in Sarasota, FL for air conditioning help that will keep corrosion from ruining your pleasant spring and summer indoor temperatures.
Formicary Corrosion and Your Air Conditioner
The corrosion that can afflict an AC is call formicary corrosion. It appears in copper-based alloys, such as the refrigerant lines that run through many air conditioners. It is difficult to see this corrosion without magnification, so it will often start without people realizing that it. The early warning signs are gray, black, or blue discoloration along copper surfaces. It takes repair specialists to identify formicary corrosion.
This corrosion happens because of copper’s exposure to organic acids (formic and acetic) often found in air pollution, which can easily enter your home’s ventilation system. Most of these acids come from household products and building material. The EPA list of products that can contain organic acids include adhesives, plywood, silicone caulking, latex and oil-based paint, vinegar, cosmetics, vinyl flooring, cleaning solvents, wallpaper, particle board, and disinfectants.
Although the holes formicary corrosion creates along the copper lines of an HVAC system are small, they are enough to allow the escape of the vital refrigerant in the system. This will lead to icing along the coils and damage to the compressor, putting your cooling at risk. Repair technicians will need to fix the holes (replacement of the corroded section is usually necessary) and recharge the refrigerant.
You can help prevent formicary corrosion with increased ventilation in your house. Try to spend at least an hour or so each day with your air conditioner turned off and doors open in your home—if the outdoor temperature will permit it. You’ll save on your cooling bills and reduce the chance of corrosion on your AC.
Please take this danger to your air conditioning in Sarasota, FL seriously. Any fault in your AC’s cooling power may indicate loss of refrigerant through formicary corrosion—and you cannot easily locate this problem on your own, let alone fix it. Call for professional repair technicians. Ultimate Air Conditioning has helped people restore their ACs since 1959, so trust to our experience when your cooling is having issues.