August 3, 2022
When your home’s cooling malfunctions, you want to get the issue resolved at the earliest opportunity. Unfortunately, there could be dozens 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 determining what they are is handy when your Epperson Service Experts Expert is reviewing options for solving the problem through air conditioning repair in North America.
ere are the top six common air conditioner problems that can cause your air conditioning to break down.
1. Thermostat Problems
Your thermostat instructs your air conditioner when to start and for how long to run. If its settings are incorrect, your cooling might not run properly. And if the batteries have died in a programmable thermostat, it won't be accessible at all. Run through this quick checklist to ensure your thermostat is receiving power and functioning properly:
- Change batteries if the screen is blank (programmable models)
- Make sure your thermostat has power (smart models)
- Verify that it’s in cooling mode
- Ensure your desired temperature is below the current room temperature
2. Dirty Air Filter
Dirty or inefficient air filters are notorious for turning a perfectly functional and reliable air conditioner into a slow and inefficient one. In fact, dirty filters will sometimes cause a number of problems, such as reduced airflow, reduced indoor air quality and higher power usage. They can also make an AC unit work harder and stop working if the coil ices over.
You can easily reduce the risk of AC problems by consistently cleaning or replacing your air filter. How do you know when you should change the filters? If you can’t think back to the last time you changed them, it’s almost surely time to. But for a standard rule of thumb, make sure you try to replace flat filters every month and pleated filters every three months.
3. Frozen Condenser Coils
Your air conditioner’s coils are crucial components because they emit heat from your home into the outdoor air. But even in the middle of the summer, ice can build up on the coils. Frozen coils won’t be able to handle the cooling process as smoothly, and in some cases the ice can keep the AC from running at all.
Freezing can be related to multiple issues, like:
- Dirty coils caused by insufficient annual maintenance
- Dirty air filters, which reduce airflow
- Clogged drain line, which can result in moisture buildup
- Refrigerant leaks, which decrease cooling power
If your air conditioner has frozen, switch it off and let the ice melt. This could take up to 24 hours, but you can quicken the process by switching settings to “fan only.” This will blow warm air across the coils without starting a refrigeration cycle.
It’s a good idea to examine your air filter first. If you can’t see light through it, replace it. The other challenges, including dirty coils, a clogged drain line or refrigerant leaks, are best handled with professional help.
4. Refrigerant Leak
Your air conditioning system needs refrigerant to convert heat. When it doesn’t have adequate refrigerant, you could notice you’re getting a lot of hot air. Here are a couple signs you’re facing a leak:
- Insufficient cold air
- Home is humid
- Longer than normal cooling cycles
- Frozen evaporator coils
- Dribbling or hissing air conditioner sounds
- Sweet smell around the air conditioner
If your air conditioner was installed prior to 2011, it probably uses Freon® or R-22. This coolant is no longer being manufactured due to its detrimental effects on the ozone layer. Only recycled quantities are obtainable, which makes refrigerant leaks more expensive to repair.
If your R-22 air conditioner is dealing with a refrigerant leak, we recommend air conditioning installation due to age and the refrigerant being obsolete. New air conditioners use Puron or R-410A, which is better for the environment.
We realize that replacing your AC system can be an emergency that you aren’t equipped for. Ask us about our Advantage Program™, which provides you a new air conditioner for just one low monthly fee. Repairs and maintenance are covered, and you’ll get to retain any valuable manufacturer’s rebates.
5. Water Leak
Your air conditioning uses a condensate drain line to flush water it removes from the air. If you’ve avoided air conditioning maintenance, this drain can become blocked with mold and cause water to flood the system. If this happens, you’ll notice water leaking.
Turn off your air conditioner to prevent damage and get in touch with us at 866-397-3787 for support.
6. Tripped Circuit Breaker
There can be a number of reasons why your cooling won't stop tripping its circuit breaker. Here are some of the most prevalent ones:
- Dirty air filter is severely limiting airflow.
- Your air conditioner is overheating caused by insufficient refrigerant.
- Condenser coils are dirty and restraining airflow.
- Condenser fan motor has failed and coils are overheating.
- Electrical connections are damaged or loose.
- Blower motor is malfunctioning.
- Compressor is drawing excess power or wiring is defective.
- Capacitor in control of starting the compressor has failed.
As we outlined earlier, check your air filter first, as that is most commonly the culprit. Any other problems will need to be resolved by an HVAC professional like Epperson Service Experts.
7. Short Cycling
A faulty cooling cycle can also be responsible. Short cycling is an irritating error when the system shuts off before the desired temperature has covered the remainder of the house. If you think your air conditioner is short cycling, pay attention to how long the air is running before it shuts off. Your standard air conditioner usually runs for 15 to 20 minutes and stays inactive for around the same period of time. But when it’s short cycling, your air conditioning is switching on and off in short bursts.
This adds heavy strain on moving parts and key components such as the blower motor. Short cycling or any type of atypical cooling cycles are frequently caused by overheating. The internal chamber gets too hot and then safety components shut the AC off. This happens over and over, namely if the real cause of the overheating isn’t dealt with.
Trust the Experts for Your Air Conditioning Repair and Maintenance Needs
The number one way for you to minimize air conditioning problems is to enroll in a preventive maintenance program. At Epperson Service Experts, we offer several HVAC memberships to suit your needs and budget. Inferior wiring, low refrigerant and dirty coils can be uncovered and corrected with routine service.
Sometimes repairs are inevitable, 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 request your repair appointment? Get in touch with us at 843-619-3781 today!