Crisis averted!

This morning, when I got off work at 3:15am, I realized the house felt warmer and stuffier than normal.  I figured I just didn't have enough windows open, as it was nice and cool outside... but then I realized the central AC was on.  Uh oh.  I felt the air blowing from the vents... not cold.  Ugh.

I turned off the thermostat, and it kept running.  I had to turn it off with the breaker, then I removed the panel.  I was in too much shock to take a pic, but I found one online that looks like the exact same model, and it looked exactly like this...

My heart sank. 

I went to the internet and searched what can cause it, and found 2 options.  One was a dirty filter, and the other was it needed recharging.  Well, the filter was BAD.  Like I'd forgotten it existed - bad... *shameface*   It was so bad, that it actually had sagged and was frozen to the top of the AC unit. Yeah.

So, I covered the furnace underneath the AC unit with plastic sheeting and duct taped it into place and put the end of it into a bucket, so the runoff wouldn't burn out the furnace or sit on the floor underneath.  It sits in a drip pan, but I didn't know if it might be clogged too.  Then I went to bed.

Thankfully it was nice and cool today, in the lower 70s, so I didn't bake while I slept. I did have a couple of windows open, but it had been sprinkling, so I was worried it would rain inside, but it didn't. So, when I woke up, the ice was all gone, and it was basically all dry again. 

My daughter had dropped by, so I had her run me to Lowe's and I got more filters.  After I got one installed and got it all turned back on, it's finally blowing cold air again (so I know it didn't need recharging whew!)  Yay!  So, thankfully, it seems it was just the filter, and there was no apparent damage done by it freezing over and continuing to run before I caught the issue.

Well, there is still an issue.  The thermostat controls do turn the compressor outside on and off, but it doesn't turn off the AC unit/blower inside. It just seems to be stuck in ON mode.  So even if it gets to the temp I set it to, it won't turn off by itself.  I did make sure it was set to auto, but nothing helps.  So, I turned it off with the breaker again since it's another cool night, and we don't need it on now anyway. I just hope we don't have to get a new thermostat.

Hope y'all are having a better Monday than I am!