central air and frost

We returned home from a holiday to discover water at the foot of our forced-air natural gas furnace and a ring of ice around the pipes that lead into the cooling coils in the plenum on top of the furnace. We also discovered that the furnace fan will no longer run on the continuous, low speed. My belief is that the fan failed, allowing frost to build up on the coils and seize up the whole system. If this theory is correct, does it mean that the air conditioning system itself has suffered major damage? Also, is it possible to buy a system that will automatically shut down in the event of a fan malfunction. Our system is a Bryant unit; at least five years old. Any advice much appreciated.
Ted Fairhurst Toronto.
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Ted Fairhurst wrote:

voltage to the control contactor will protect against freezeup damages.
Liquid refrigerant flood back to the compressor could ruin the compressor. - udarrell
--
Optimizing Air-Conditioner Efficiency
http://www.udarrell.com/air-conditioning-efficiency-btuhr-evaporator-coil.html
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most freezups i have in my rentals are from the a coil being clogged with dirt . a fan motor failing would cause the same thing.or maybe the ice caused the fan motor or starting capaciter to go out. thats why a yearly check and cleaning of the a coil and blower fins is important. i would let it all thaw out and check the coil for dirt and clean if necc, then see how it acts.i think there are models that turn off the compressor when the a coil freezes up.
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net wrote:

My A/C has a drip pan to catch the water that condenses on the coil. I suppose they all have those. The drip pan has a drain that can get clogged with dust so that the pan overflows. Maybe the pan would freeze up if it floods the coil? Anyway a person has to keep that drain clear.
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In alt.home.repair on Thu, 21 Jul 2005 17:51:57 -0400 "Ted Fairhurst"

You left your AC on when you went on holiday, vacation? No wonder the world is short of fuel.

Meirman -- If emailing, please let me know whether or not you are posting the same letter. Change domain to erols.com, if necessary.
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