August 3, 2022
When your home’s air conditioner malfunctions, you should try to get the issue dealt with at the earliest opportunity. However, there could be countless of reasons why your AC unit isn’t working properly. How do you know which one is causing trouble? There are a few problems that are more common, and recognizing what they are is helpful when your Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning Expert is reviewing options for resolving the problem through air conditioning repair in North America.
ere are the top six common air conditioner problems that can cause your air conditioner to break down.
1. Thermostat Problems
Your thermostat tells your cooling when to start and for how long to run. If its settings are inaccurate, your air conditioning might not run like it should. And if the batteries have died in a programmable thermostat, you'll have to charge the batteries before you can use it. Follow this brief checklist to ensure your thermostat is receiving power and working properly:
- Change batteries if the screen is blank (programmable models)
- Make sure your thermostat has power (smart models)
- Verify that it’s switched to cooling mode
- Ensure your desired temperature is below the current room temperature
2. Dirty Air Filter
Old or inefficient air filters are known for turning a perfectly functional and efficient air conditioner into a slow and inefficient one. In fact, dirty filters can cause multiple problems, including weaker airflow, reduced indoor air quality and higher power usage. They can also make your AC unit work harder and stop working if the coil freezes.
You can easily reduce the risk of AC problems by regularly cleaning or replacing your air filter. How do you know if you should change the filters? If you can’t think back to the last time you changed them, it’s almost definitely time to. But for a general rule of thumb, make sure you try to replace flat filters each 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 during the summer, ice can develop on the coils. Frozen coils won’t be able to manage the cooling process as easily, and in certain cases enough ice can stop the AC from running entirely.
Freezing can be linked to different issues, including:
- Dirty coils caused by ignoring annual maintenance
- Dirty air filters, which restrict airflow
- Clogged drain line, which can result in moisture buildup
- Refrigerant leaks, which lessen cooling power
If your air conditioner is frozen, shut it off and let the ice melt. This can take up to 24 hours, but you can quicken the process by switching settings to “fan only.” This should blow warm air on the coils without starting a cooling cycle.
It’s recommended to check your air filter first. If you can’t see light through it, change it out. The other problems, such as dirty coils, a clogged drain line or refrigerant leaks, will need the support of a trained technician.
4. Refrigerant Leak
Your cooling employs refrigerant to transfer heat. When it doesn’t have enough refrigerant, you may notice you’re getting a lot of hot air. Here are a few signs you’re dealing with a leak:
- Insufficient cold air
- Home seems humid
- Excessively long cooling cycles
- Ice forming on the evaporator coils
- Bubbling or hissing air conditioner sounds
- Sweet smell around the air conditioner
If your air conditioning system was installed before 2011, it likely uses Freon® or R-22. This refrigerant is no longer being produced as a consequence of its damaging effects on the ozone layer. Only recycled portions of Freon are available, which makes refrigerant leaks more expensive to fix.
If your R-22 air conditioner is dealing with a refrigerant leak, we advocate for air conditioning installation due to age and the refrigerant being obsolete. Newer air conditioners employ Puron or R-410A, which is superior 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 gives you a new air conditioner for just one affordable monthly fee. Repairs and maintenance are covered, and you’ll get to keep any useful manufacturer’s rebates.
5. Water Leak
Your AC unit uses a condensate drain line to flush water it removes from the air. If you’ve avoided air conditioning maintenance, this drain can become plugged up with mold and cause water to stay in the drain line. If this happens, you’ll notice water leaking.
Switch off your air conditioner to avoid damage and call us at 866-397-3787 for assistance.
6. Tripped Circuit Breaker
There can be a couple of reasons why your air conditioning system keeps tripping its circuit breaker. Here are several of the most common ones:
- Dirty air filter is significantly constraining airflow.
- Your air conditioner is overheating because of insufficient refrigerant.
- Condenser coils are dirty and reducing airflow.
- Condenser fan motor has stopped working and coils are overheating.
- Electrical connections are strained or loose.
- Blower motor is malfunctioning.
- Compressor is drawing too much power or wiring is faulty.
- Capacitor in control of starting the compressor has failed.
As we mentioned earlier, examine your air filter first, as that is most commonly the culprit. Any other problems should be taken care of by an HVAC expert like Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.
7. Short Cycling
An insufficient cooling cycle can also be part of the problem. Short cycling is an annoying error when the system shuts down before the expected temperature has covered the remainder of the house. If you suspect your cooling is short cycling, pay attention to how long the air is active before it turns off. Your standard air conditioner usually runs for 15 to 20 minutes and stays off for around the same period of time. But when it’s short cycling, your cooling is running on and off in short bursts.
This places heavy strain on moving parts and critical components like the blower motor. Short cycling or any type of irregular cooling cycles are routinely a consequence of overheating. The internal chamber gets too hot and then safety components switch the AC off. This happens over and over, particularly if the source of the overheating isn’t resolved.
Trust the Experts for Your Air Conditioning Repair and Maintenance Needs
The number one way for you to avoid air conditioning problems is to sign up for a preventive maintenance program. At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we promote several HVAC memberships to fit your needs and budget. Inferior wiring, low refrigerant and dirty coils can be discovered and solved through routine tune-ups.
Occasionally repairs are inescapable, 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 sign up for a membership program or to arrange your repair appointment? Get in touch with us at 561-629-1826 today!