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The Most Common Trouble With Air Conditioners

Air conditioner usage

It’s already getting hot outside and, as welcome as the sunny, warm weather is, it’s also nice to know your HVAC system will be working efficiently. While there are several steps you can take to improve your home cooling results, you should also take steps to be sure your air conditioner is in top condition. Before you face soaring summer temperatures, plan to deal with some of the most common home HVAC problems.

Leaking Water or Refrigerant

Dripping water may not bother you much, especially if it’s happening out in the yard, but it does bother the air conditioner. That leak could lead to expensive damages to the unit or your home and prevent the HVAC from cooling altogether. It could also indicate trouble inside the unit. As soon as you see either water or refrigerant dripping from the drain line, contact a technician. Frozen coils, plants and debris surrounding the A/C unit, and a clogged air filter or ductwork could all lead to this problem.

Sounds of Trouble

There are a lot of different sounds that could indicate trouble with your HVAC system.

  •          Squeals and squeaks coming from the unit could mean you have a motor bearing problem or that there’s a bad belt. This problem is simple to repair if you catch it in time; simply add lubricant to the oil port.
  •          An aging or damaged motor or blower assembly might lead to banging or thumping noises. It’s best to contact a technician for these problems.
  •          Do you hear clicking when you turn your appliance on or off? This usually indicates trouble with the electrical relay.
  •          If there’s a smacking sound while the blower’s running, there’s probably something stuck in the blower. Turn off your unit and make sure the blower is free of debris. If this was the problem, you’re good to go. If not, you should contact a professional.
  •          A rattling noise may be the result of something loose inside the machine or a failing motor. This repair is a job for an HVAC technician.

Uneven Cooling

There are various situations that could cause your A/C unit to fluctuate in its cooling output. The most common are the lack of adequate insulation, blocked vents, and damage along the ductwork. You can inspect the vents throughout your home, making sure that vents and registers are open and clear. Another factor could be windows that warm the room when the sun shines in. Resolve this problem with blackout curtains during the hottest times of day and days of the year.

The A/C Unit Won’t Turn On

If you’re lucky, this could be the result of dead batteries or a mistake made when programming the thermostat (such as forgetting to switch it to “cooling” mode.) Another common reason for a unit that won’t turn on is a flipped circuit breaker. After checking for these situations, contact an air conditioning technician for repairs.

There’s No Cold Air

Maybe the worst situation you can face is an A/C unit that runs but doesn’t actually cool your home. Again, there are several situations that could cause this. Some, such as a dirty filter, are easy to handle, but others, such as low refrigerant levels in the reservoir, are much harder to correct. Check the filter, the thermostat settings, and the land around your unit. If everything is as it should be in these areas, contact an HVAC technician. [Read more…]