Air Conditioner Repair Checklist
1. AC Won’t Turn On
There can be a couple of explanations why your AC unit won’t run: a blown circuit breaker, incorrect thermostat settings, a shut off switch or a full condensate drain pan.
Triggered Circuit Breaker
Your system won’t work when you have a blown breaker.
To determine if one has gotten overloaded, go to your home’s main electrical panel. You can find this metallic device on the wall in the basement, garage or closet.
- Confirm your hands and feet are dry before you work on the panel or breakers.
- Locate the breaker labeled “AC” and confirm it’s in the “on” spot. If it’s overloaded, the lever will be in the "off" position.
- Steadily shift the switch back to the “on” spot. If it instantaneously flips again, don’t reset it and contact us at 256-270-1196. A fuse that keeps turning off may mean your home has an electrical issue.
Incorrect Thermostat Settings
If your thermostat isn’t giving a sign to your equipment to start, it won’t turn on.
The key step is ensuring it’s switched to “cool” and not “heat.” Otherwise your air conditioner might not switch on. You could also have hot air blowing from vents being the heater is running instead.
If you rely on a traditional thermostat:
- Replace the batteries if the readout is blank. If the readout is showing scrambled numbers, get a new thermostat.
- Ensure the proper mode is on the display. If you can’t change it, reverse it by dropping the temperature and hitting the “hold” button. This will cause your AC to run if programming is wrong.
- Test setting the thermostat 5 degrees cooler than the room’s temperature. Your AC won’t work if the thermostat is set the same as the space’s temperature.
Once your thermostat is calibrated correctly, you should start getting cold air fast.
If you have a smart thermostat, like one produced by Nest, Ecobee, Lux, Honeywell or Bosch, look at the manufacturer’s website for help. If you still can’t get it to work, call us at 256-270-1196 for help.
Your AC probably has a shut-down switch by its outside unit. This device is commonly in a metal box mounted on your residence. If your equipment has recently been serviced, the switch may have inadvertently been turned off.
Overflowing Condensate Drain Pan
Condensate drain pans hold the extra water your system removes from the air. This pan can be found either under or in your furnace or air handler.
When there’s an obstruction or blocked drain, water can build up and prompt a safety feature to stop your equipment.
If your pan has a PVC pipe or drain, you can drain the surplus condensation with a formulated pan-cleaning tab. You can buy these tabs at a home improvement or hardware shop.
If your pan includes a pump, look for the float switch. If the mechanism is “up” and there’s moisture in the pan, you could need to install a new pump. Reach us at 256-270-1196 for assistance.
2. AC Blows Warm Air
If your air conditioner is on but not providing cold air, its airflow might be blocked. Or it might not have enough refrigerant.
Your equipment’s airflow can be restricted by a plugged air filter or dirty condenser.
How to Replace Your Air Filter
A filthy filter can create many issues, like:
- Reduced cooling
- Icy refrigerant lines or evaporator coil
- Uneven cooling
- Increased energy costs
- Making your system stop working sooner
We suggest changing flat filters monthly, and pleated filters every three months.
If you can’t remember when you last replaced your filter, turn off your system totally and take out the filter. You can spot the filter in your furnace or air pump’s blower compartment. It may also be situated in an attached filter holder or wall-mounted return air grille.
Tilt the filter up to the light. If you see a lot of dust, you certainly should replace it.
How to Clean Your Cooling Equipment
Greenery, grass and shrubbery can get in the way of your condensing unit. This could limit its airflow, impact its energy efficiency and change your comfort. Here’s a method you can follow to get your unit working smoothly again.
- Turn off power fully at the breaker or external lever.
- Clear plant waste around the unit. Once you’ve cleared all the clutter within a two-foot range, you can use a paint brush or vacuum to slowly clean the condenser fins. Misshapen fins can also hurt performance.
- Use a hose nozzle to gingerly clean the fins from inside the system. Be careful to avoid getting water on the fan motor.
- Restore the power.
Not Enough Refrigerant
When AC systems don’t have enough refrigerant, they’ll have difficulty removing heat and humidity from your home.
Here are several symptoms that your unit is seeping refrigerant:
- It takes an extended amount of time to lower the temperature in your rooms and you’re continually lowering the thermostat.
- Air conditioning moving through the registers isn’t as cold as it should be.
- You’re experiencing hissing or gurgling sounds when cooling runs.
- Your evaporator coil is iced over due to having trouble absorbing warmth.
Think your equipment is leaking refrigerant? You need a qualified heating and cooling service specialist to repair the leak and replenish the correct amount of refrigerant in your system. Reach us at 256-270-1196 for help.
3. AC Not Blowing Enough Air
When it feels like you’re not getting adequate amounts of chilled air, there’s likely a blockage or disconnection inside your AC unit.
- The beginning stage is looking at your air filter. Get a new one if it’s soiled.
- Make sure the ductwork is open across your residence.
- If you’re still not getting enough chilly air, you should have your duct system inspected by a pro like Bain Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. Your ductwork may need to be serviced or rejoined in limited space areas like your attic, basement or crawl space.