Air conditioners are essential to help control temperature, humidity, and ventilation in our homes or vehicles and maintain cool temperatures in warm conditions. Statistics show that 90% of United States homes use air conditioners, with the number increasing significantly during the summer months when many individuals prefer to cool themselves inside their homes. As a result, a few air conditioning (AC) issues arise because of the dormancy.
AC problems may also arise from dirty condenser coils, frozen evaporator coils, fan issues, leaking ducts, clogged drains, thermostat problems, and low refrigerant. To prevent AC issues, you must frequently maintain your system to keep it in optimal condition. Some maintenance practices may include occasionally replacing dirty air filters, checking and repairing ducts and holes, installing thermostat software, and clearing outdoor debris around your AC system. Thus, you must be familiar with the usual problems to keep your AC running as it should. This article will outline the top common issues to expect from your AC. Continue reading to learn more.
1. Water Leak
A water leak is one of the most common air conditioning problems homeowners face. This may be from indoor units or outdoor units; indoor water leaks may be due to a clogged condensate drain that forces the water back up the pipe. A broken condensate pump may also cause this. On the other hand, outdoor water leaks under the compressor may be due to several factors, including dry air filter, a broken condensate pan, a bad AC seal, or improper installation.
To solve indoor water leaks, you may contact a technician or use a homemade solution to unclog the condensate pipe. You can also use a wet or dry vacuum to unclog your drain or pour vinegar down the drain to kill algae or fungi build-up that mainly clogs your system. The best thing for outdoor units is to turn off the system and contact a technician immediately because these issues may lead to costly damage if left unattended.
2. AC Running Continuously
While it’s okay for your air conditioner to run frequently during summer, it should turn off periodically after a full cooling cycle. If your AC constantly runs without switching off and on, it could be a sign of a problem. This common AC issue can be due to problems in your compressor, thermostat, electrical parts, or air filters.
Correcting these problems is essential because it protects your AC components from damage and prevents your energy bills from shooting to the roof. To solve the issue, check your filter’s condition or turn off the thermostat fan to observe if the air conditioner will shut off. If it’s challenging to fix the problem, call in the experts as they will easily fix the problem.
3. AC Not Turning On
Many homeowners get frustrated, especially during summer, when they wake up and realize that their AC isn’t working or it doesn’t turn on. This problem can be because of a tripped circuit breaker, loose wiring, or a faulty thermostat.
You can try fixing the problem by checking the thermostat batteries and replacing them if they’re dead. If the batteries are in optimal condition, check the thermostat settings to ensure the cooling mode is on. If the thermostat is on and your AC is still not working, check if the circuit breaker is tripped—you can reset the breaker by turning the switch off and then on. If your AC is still not turning on, the problem could be the wiring, which you shouldn’t try repairing if you’re not qualified. Instead, call the AC experts to diagnose any electrical issue in the system.
4. AC Not Blowing Cold Air
This is another common issue that affects the AC system. The AC may be running, but the air coming out isn’t cold, or it may be running, but there’s no air coming out. This may be due to a tripped circuit breaker or an air filter clogged with dirt, thus inhibiting airflow to the unit. The clogged air filter may also freeze the condenser unit, interfering with the cooling power of the AC. Another possible cause is low refrigerant levels.
You can solve this problem by replacing your air filters regularly or just contacting the technicians to perform regular maintenance. Technicians will repair existing problems and look for potential issues, preventing breakdowns in the future.
5. AC Blowing Hot Air
There’s no greater problem than your AC dispensing hot air during summer. Hot air can be caused by a dirty air filter or clogged ducts, causing it to overheat. It may also be the settings in the thermostat or low refrigerant levels.
When trying to fix the problem, check first if the thermostat settings are in place, they could have been switched accidentally. If your settings are correct, consider changing the air filter. Make it a habit to replace your air filters every month. You should also schedule a duct cleaning. If the problem still stands after replacing air filters and cleaning the ducts, you can add refrigerant to your AC, but check for any leaks first to avoid wastage. If the issue is still there, contact a specialist to diagnose and fix the problem.
6. Short Cycling
This happens when the AC turns off and on repeatedly. Instead of completing a full cycle to switch off, the AC starts and goes off frequently. This is a concerning issue that can damage AC components like the compressor. The problem is sometimes due to miscalibrated thermostats or clogged air filters. Another reason may be that the AC is too powerful.
The solution is to change your air filter or call an expert to examine your AC components. They can also advise you on the appropriate AC that suits your home.
These are some common air conditioning problems homeowners may face when using the air conditioner. Should you spot any of these problems, you must address them immediately to prevent them from escalating to costly AC problems. Regular AC maintenance can also detect underlying issues that may impact the efficiency of your AC.