Why Is My Home Air Conditioning System Not Working?
Do I Need An Air Conditioning Repair?
As a disclaimer, there are some things that need a professional. Read this air conditioning repair troubleshooting guide before trying anything yourself! When in doubt, Schedule a professional to come out.
All ac systems can and will have issues at some point. Sooner or later, an air conditioning repair is inevitable. Like a car, they are mechanical. Because so, they need maintenance. Parts wear out with heavy use.
As a matter of fact, even the best systems on the market fail over time. Certainly, this page will help you identify common ac issues. It aims to educate you and provide solutions.
So kick back, bookmark the page if you need to. This should take about 10 minutes to read. In those 10 minutes, you will be able to make money saving decisions that leave you cool all year long.
My AC System Is Not Turning On!
- No Power!
If your air conditioner is not turning on, try this:
First, check the electrical panel.
If you see a tripped breaker labeled "AC" or "AIR HANDLER", reset it. Power surges can trip air conditioning breakers. Consequently, this leaves your ac unit with zero power to run.
Then, check for a clogged air filter.
If your filter is full of debris, it blocks airflow. No airflow going over the coils in the air handler causes it to freeze. As a result, you will actually see ice build up on the ac unit! The warm air needs to pass over it with ease. So keep those filters clean. Change them monthly.
Lastly, check for water being present in the drain pan.
If it's not draining, modern ac systems have a device we call a "float switch". When water backs up, it cuts the power off so the ac unit stops producing water.
As a result, sludge can build up in the drain lines. We recommend you pour a little bit of bleach down them when you change your filter every month. This will help prevent backups in the drain line.
Still having air conditioning repair problems? Say no more. We've got 9 more solutions for you, keep reading.
Why Is My Air Conditioner Not Cooling?
- Wrong Thermostat Settings!
It's very common for an ac issue to be a simple setting on the thermostat. These few tips could save you the hassle of calling an expert.
First, Check if Your Thermostat is On
- Is the display lit up?
- If not, does it use batteries? Replace them.
- If it does not use batteries it has a dedicated power wire. Because so, troubleshooting this requires an HVAC expert.
Second, Check if Your Thermostat is Set To Cool
Every thermostat has a cooling setting. Typically, the options are Cool/Off/Heat. Make sure your thermostat is set to the setting that says "Cool".
Third, Check if Your Thermostat Has The Fan Off
Every thermostat has a fan setting. The options are usually, On/Off/Auto. Make sure the thermostat is set to "Auto". Note, the fan doesn't need to always be on.
In short, AC units are designed to only run when the temperature is above your desire temp. They shut off once it's cold enough.
Why Is My Air Handler Turning Off?
- Air Filter Issues!
Your Air Filter is Dirty
As mentioned above, a dirty air filter can block the flow of air. This can cause other problems as well. When you have dirty filters your AC unit has to work harder. As a result, this creates higher energy bills and poor cooling.
There's a term we use call "Short cycling". When your AC turns off and on again in short bursts. It never completes a full cooling cycle. Unfortunately, this can cause your air conditioning system to stop working.
So, clean or change your air filters to avoid a future problem. According to FPL, you can save up to 15% of your energy bill by changing your ac filters. You can also save money and stress with our preventative maintenance plan.
Blocked Vents are Reducing Air Flow
Blocked supply vents and dampers are a problem for your AC unit. First, check your vents to make sure nothing is covering them. Dust and dirt could be preventing airflow.
Furniture, toys, or closed vents may also be the problem. Then, take a look at each vent in the space. Wipe the dirt off. Make sure they're open. After all, air needs to flow through. Nothing should block them.
Why Is My Air Conditioning Fan Not Working? - Burnt Out Condenser Fan Motor!
The condenser fan motor works hard. By doing so, it gets a lot of wear and tear. Eventually, this leads to motors burning out over time. Fan blades turning slow or no movement at all are signs of a bad motor.
Fortunately, you can check the outside unit to see how the fan blade is moving while the ac is on. But, this is not a repair you're expected handle. It requires taking the unit apart and electrical skills.
Call an HVAC technician you can trust. They can replace the fan motor for you. And, with regular maintenance you can prevent future burn outs.
Why Is My Air Conditioning Not Starting?
- Capacitor is Failing!
No, not a flux capacitor. We're not traveling through time here. The term "Start Capacitor" or "Run Capacitor" is a device that starts the fan motor. Ultimately, It sends energy to the fan motor. These small devices keep your system running.
When you hear a humming noise from your AC, it may be your start capacitor that needs replacing. Although, a humming noise could be other devices at fault as well. It's time to call in an HVAC pro for an air conditioning repair. They will have the skills necessary to diagnose and repair this issue.
Why Is My Drain Pan Full Of Water?
- Condensate Pump Is Not Working!
A condensate pump helps push that water across and doesn't allow the water to build up in the drain pan. In the event that this pumps fails, water rises in the drain pan. Sooner or later, this will trigger the unit to shut off. And, in cases where a float switch does not exist, this means you could have a flood!
Ultimately, condensate pumps exist in systems that don't have a drain line with a downward pitch. They suck the water out of the plan and push it out of the home. Water flows downward with gravity. So, in situations where it needs to go upwards we have a pump. Sometimes the exit pipe for your drain is on the other side of the building.
Why Is My Air Conditioner Making Noise?
- Something Is Loose!
For the most part, air conditioners are quiet. Sometimes you will hear a noise as the cycle on. In the event that you hear squealing, rattling, or buzzing; there could be a problem.
- A Rattling Noise - means something in the system is loose.
- Squealing Noise - Could mean something need lubricant.
- Buzzing Noise - Could mean there's an electrical issue.
If these noises are happening often, turn the unit off to prevent any further damage. When in doubt, Call a professional air conditioning technician to solve the issue.
Why Is My Air Conditioning System Always Running? - Thermostat or Coil Issues!
Your ac unit not turning off is a problem. It should be cycling on and off throughout the day. Running nonstop will lead to high energy bills as well as shortens the life span of the unit.
A common reason for ac units not shutting off is an issue with your thermostat. Basically, If your thermostat is not working, it doesn't send the signal to shut off. The thermostat and air handler (indoor ac unit) communicate with each other. When the temperature has reached your desired temp, the thermostat tells it to stop. If the thermostat never tells the unit to stop cooling, it keeps going.
As described before, check the thermostat for proper operation. See if it has power. After that, check if the buttons working? Is the fan set to on instead of auto? If all looks well and the thermostat appears to be working - call an HVAC pro. They can further troubleshoot.
AC Always Running (Continued) - Coil Issues
Another reason for an ac unit to keep running is issues with your coils. We are talking about the indoor evaporator coil (inside the air handler). As well as the outdoor condenser coil.
- A frozen evaporator coil could mean there's a refrigerant leak. This prevents the system from cooling and keeps the unit running. If you see ice building up on the coil, this could be the problem.
- Dirt Covered Condenser Coils are a problem. The outdoor coil's job is to release heat outside. If it's covered in dirt, the hot air cannot disperse. The ac unit will continue to run because it can't seem to cool down.
If your air conditioner has an issue with it's coils, try checking for ice and dirt. If you see ice on the coils, turn the system off and call a professional ac tech.
Dirty filter? Replace it. If there's dirt on the outside coil, try hosing it off with a water hose. Also, sweep away dirt and debris that is close to the condenser. If you must, trim bushes away from it. The unit needs to breathe! But, if the coil appears to have damage, call an HVAC pro.
When to Call an HVAC Professional
Your safety matters. When the simple solutions don't work, call a pro. Electrical issues can be dangerous. All things considered, a professional will have the skills, tools, and experience to get the job done.
While protecting you, your home, and loved ones. Attempting to repair it yourself could cause more damage. When in doubt, turn the system off. Contact United A/C & Refrigeration for help.
How United Can Help
Looking for a professional air conditioning repair company? Our comfort specialists at United A/C & Refrigeration are here to help. As shown below, we are a full service air conditioning contractor. Here are some of the services we provide: