Seven Most Common AC Problems and How to Fix Them
When your home’s air conditioner breaks down, you should try to get the situation taken care of as soon as possible. Annoyingly, there can be dozens of reasons why your AC unit isn’t functioning properly. How do you know which one is causing trouble? There are a number of problems that are more common, and identifying what they are is beneficial when your Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing Expert is discussing options for fixing the problem with air conditioning repair in North America.
Here are the top six common air conditioner problems that can cause your air conditioner to stop working.
1. Thermostat Problems
Your thermostat instructs your air conditioner when to start and for how long to run. If the thermostat settings are inaccurate, your air conditioner may not function correctly. And if the batteries ran out in a programmable thermostat, it won’t be accessible at all. Try this brief checklist to make sure your thermostat is receiving power and working properly:
- Swap out batteries if the screen is blank (programmable models)
- Make sure your thermostat has power (smart models)
- Confirm that it’s currently on cooling mode
- Ensure your desired temperature is below the current room temperature
2. Dirty Air Filter
Old or inefficient air filters are notorious for turning a perfectly functional and efficient air conditioner into a slow and inefficient one. In fact, dirty filters will sometimes cause lots of problems, such as reduced airflow, reduced indoor air quality and excessive power consumption. They can also make the AC unit work harder and stop working if the coil freezes.
You can easily avoid AC problems by routinely cleaning or replacing the air filter. How do you know if you should change the filters? If you can’t remember the last time you changed them, it’s almost surely time to. But for a basic recommendation, make sure you try to exchange flat filters every month and pleated filters every three months.
3. Frozen Condenser Coils
Your air conditioner’s coils are important components because they release heat from your home into the outdoor air. But even in the summer, ice can form on the coils. Frozen coils won’t be able to manage the cooling process as easily, and in certain cases enough ice can block the AC from running entirely.
Freezing can be connected to different issues, like:
- Dirty coils caused by insufficient annual maintenance
- Dirty air filters, which obstruct airflow
- Clogged drain line, which can result in moisture buildup
- Refrigerant leaks, which lessen cooling power
If your air conditioner is frozen, switch it off and let the ice on the coils melt. This will sometimes take up to 24 hours, but you can quicken the process by switching settings to “fan only.” This will blow warm air on the coils without starting a cooling cycle.
It’s smart to inspect your air filter first. If you can’t see light through it, change it. The other issues, including dirty coils, a clogged drain line or refrigerant leaks, will need the support of a trained technician.
4. Refrigerant Leak
Your air conditioning system uses refrigerant to relocate heat. When it doesn’t have adequate refrigerant, you might notice you’re getting a lot of hot air. Here are some signs you’re confronting a leak:
- Inadequate cold air
- Home feels humid
- Extended cooling cycles
- Ice on the evaporator coils
- Dribbling or hissing air conditioner sounds
- Sweet smell nearby the air conditioner
If your air conditioning system was installed earlier than 2011, it likely uses Freon® or R-22. This coolant is no longer being produced due to its damaging effects on the ozone layer. Only recycled supplies are accessible, which makes refrigerant leaks more expensive to repair.
If your R-22 air conditioner is dealing with a refrigerant leak, we suggest air conditioning installation due to age and the refrigerant being obsolete. Newer air conditioners employ Puron or R-410A, which is more sustainable for the environment.
We understand that replacing your cooling can be an emergency that you aren’t ready for. Ask us about our Advantage Program™, which offers you a new air conditioner for just one low monthly fee. Repairs and maintenance are covered, and you’ll get to proceed with any worthwhile manufacturer’s rebates.
5. Water Leak
Your air conditioner uses a condensate drain line to flush water it eliminates from the air. If you’ve overlooked air conditioning maintenance, this drain can become clogged with mold and cause water to back up. If this happens, you’ll notice water leaking.
Shut off your air conditioner to prevent damage and call us at 866-397-3787 for support.
6. Tripped Circuit Breaker
There can be a few reasons why your air conditioner is repeatedly tripping its circuit breaker. Here are some of the most widespread ones:
- Dirty air filter is severely restricting airflow.
- Your cooling overheated due to insufficient refrigerant.
- Condenser coils are dirty and reducing airflow.
- Condenser fan motor has malfunctioned and coils are overheating.
- Electrical connections are strained or loose.
- Blower motor is malfunctioning.
- Compressor is drawing too much power or wiring is defective.
- Capacitor in charge of starting the compressor has gone out.
As we discussed earlier, check your air filter first, as that is most likely to be the culprit. Any other problems should be taken care of by an HVAC professional like Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing.
7. Short Cycling
An insufficient cooling cycle can also be part of the problem. Short cycling is a frustrating malfunction when the air conditioner turns off before the desired temperature has covered the remainder of the house. If you believe your air conditioner is short cycling, pay attention to how long the air is running before it turns off. Your standard air conditioner generally runs for 15 to 20 minutes and stays inactive for close to a similar period of time. But when it’s short cycling, your air conditioning is switching on and off in quick bursts.
This adds heavy strain on moving parts and vital components such as the blower motor. Short cycling or any kind of abnormal cooling cycles are frequently a consequence of overheating. The internal chamber gets too hot and then safety components turn the AC off. This happens again and again, particularly if the source of the overheating isn’t resolved.
Trust the Experts for Your Air Conditioning Repair and Maintenance Needs
The ideal way for you to avoid air conditioning problems is to enroll in a preventive maintenance program. At Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing, we provide several HVAC memberships to fit your needs and budget. Inferior wiring, low refrigerant and dirty coils can be uncovered and solved through routine maintenance.
In some cases repairs are inevitable, but as a maintenance member, you’ll benefit from special discounts on service, 24/7/365 priority service, no trip or overtime charges and more. Ready to enroll in a membership program or to request your repair appointment? Contact us at today!
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