If You Own A/C, You Need to Read This
As we enter into the dog days of summer, we are receiving more and more calls from customers looking to purchase an air conditioner. But with heat, we are also getting flooded with calls from homeowners to service or repair their existing, but much neglected, air conditioners. Sometimes, when your air conditioner is not cooling adequately, you can take care of this problem yourself by playing a little bit of detective. Taking the time to troubleshoot the problem on your own might save you some time and money, and get your family feeling cool without having to hire a professional.
Once you have tried these tips below, and if it hasn’t resolved the issue, then it is time to contact a local air conditioner service company like the experts at Always Plumbing & Heating, to provide an in-depth assessment, diagnosis, and repair of your unit.
5 Air Conditioning Trouble-Shooting Tips
1. Check Your Thermostat
As redundant as this sounds, we cannot stress how many times customers have called us with no heat or no cooling, and their only issue was the batteries in their thermostat were dead. This is the most simple and straightforward solution, so we always advise customers to check this first, prior to booking a service call. It is also important to check the settings on your thermostat. Ensure that you have switched it from Heat-only mode, to Cooling-mode, or to Auto-mode which will switch between heating and cooling as needed, to keep your home at a consistent, comfortable temperature. Also, check your fan settings. Your fan can be set to Auto, On, or Off. If your fan is set to On, it will run constantly, even when the system is not cooling, which can result in the circulation of warm air. Set your fan to Auto, and the blower will turn off until your A/C is cooling or your furnace is heating.
2. Dirty Air Filter
The second most common issue is a clogged filter air filter. As your air conditioner is cooling, the filter on your furnace is trapping dust, pollen, and airborne particles. A clogged filter will result in reduce or blocked airflow, which can cause an A/C to stop working efficiently, or stop working altogether. If the air in your home is warmer than normal, or your A/C runs for a short period then shuts down and restarts, you may have a dirty air filter. Change or clean your filter according to your furnace owner’s manual.
3. A/C Obstructions
Check your exterior A/C to see if there are plants crowding the compressor. Your air conditioner needs adequate airflow in order to cool properly. Make sure to trim back any plants so there is 2 to 3 feet between your A/C and any plant or other structures. Do not store items up against your air conditioner. And every spring, don’t forget to remove the winter storage cover before starting up your unit!
4. Check Your Circuit Breaker
If your air conditioner is not turning on, make sure to check your breaker panel. Occasionally, the breaker can trip, and it may be as simple a fix as flipping the switch back on!
5. Low Refrigerant
Your air conditioner used refrigerant to cool your home. The solution is pumped through the internal workings of the equipment, pulling heat from your home and depositing it outside, creating a cooler, less humid indoor atmosphere inside. Signs that your refrigerant is low may include the house not staying cool enough, the system running continuously or for much longer than normal cycles, or the A/C turns on and off quickly several times in a row. You may have a leak or other issue causing the refrigerant levels to drop. If you suspect low refrigerant, you should call a service company to troubleshoot the issue for you. They will have the correct tools and knowledge to get to the bottom of the issue.
When to Contact a Professional
Understanding common air conditioner issues, and taking the above steps, may save you time and money. Keep in mind, there are several other instances that require the expertise of a professional. Every spring or summer, you should ensure your air conditioner receives the TLC of a professional A/C tuneup. This will keep your unit running efficiently all summer long, and reduce your risk of experiencing more serious and costly A/C repairs. If you are already having problems with your air conditioner, and the above steps did not solve your problems, don’t panic. Our team of cooling experts really knows their stuff! Repairs can have straightforward solutions but if left unattended, a small problem can quickly balloon into a much larger one. The HVAC pros at Always Plumbing & Heating will thoroughly assess and diagnose the problem, and provide you with straightforward pricing for your repair. Our 5 Star Superstar team will help you and your family cool off as quickly as possible, with guaranteed work that you can count on!