Air conditioner problems: troubleshooting commen issues
Take a look at these common air conditioner problems and AC maintenance tips. Is your unit experiencing the same? Is it time for a new unit?
Where do you need services?
Central air conditioners often malfunction during peak demand periods, especially if an issue exists with a key component. Diagnosing simple air conditioner problems can help you restore the cool comfort of your home on a summer's day.
Many of the issues that interrupt your AC services are simple to fix. If you rule out these basic problems with central air troubleshooting, you can assume the knowledge of an experience contractor is needed.
Dirty air filters
Many central air conditioning problems are caused by dirty air filters. Symptoms of this issue may include:
- Unit shuts off randomly. When the air filter is badly clogged, it can block air flow enough to cause the outdoor unit to overheat. The unit will shut off then restart when it cools down again.
- Reduction in cooling. The lowered air flow from a dirty filter can also cause reduced cooling. The entire home will stay warmer, no matter how low you set the thermostat.
Thermostat — check
When learning how to troubleshoot an air conditioner, remember to check the thermostat before assuming you need a new unit. The thermostat can break and stop sending the signal for cooling to the outdoor unit.
Your air conditioner warranty may cover the costs of thermostat issues if it was included with the system.
A repair technician can test the thermostat and determine if the wiring has become disconnected. A quick and inexpensive fix may resolve your air conditioner problems.
There are a few basic cleaning tasks you can perform each spring before starting your unit for the first time.
The condenser, which is the outdoor unit that provides the cooling effect, often becomes blocked and clogged with debris. Leaves, grass and pests can all block the vents that allow the condenser to draw in fresh air. The unit can overheat due to this basic problem, sending it into a cycle of switching on and off. Remove any debris from the exterior of the unit, paying special attention to the vents.
If it's winter, there's a chance your air condtioner coils could freeze. If this occurs, turn off your unit. Let the ice melt. You can also use a brush to speed up the process. Even if you let the ice melt completely, use a brush to remove any excess dirt. Then fill a spray bottle with warm water, and wipe down the coils. When the water has dried, you can turn the unit back on.
Air conditioner replacement
If the unit simply won't start and your thermostat is still working, there may be a more serious issue. Repairs for air conditioners that fail to start range from simple rewiring to full replacement. If a professional advises you to replace air conditioner equipment, study up on how to choose an air conditioner before making a purchase. A model that comes with a long warranty could save you money in the long run if a warm climate causes you to use your unit throughout the year.
Reply! is ready to help when your equipment can no longer keep your home cool. We make it easy to find a professional contractor to solve your air conditioners problems. Requesting an air conditioner estimate will help you determine if it is more affordable to fix the problem or simply replace the unit.