When to Contact Your Local HVAC Company if Your AC Unit is Not Cooling
Is your air conditioner not cooling your home or office during the hottest summer days? This is an issue that many face, especially when an air conditioner is needed most.
While there are many issues that you can fix and maintain yourself, it is recommended to bring in your local HVAC company to make sure that nothing is overlooked. Often times, we think we understand the symptoms of an issue, but the real problem is beyond what meets the eyes.
Bringing a professional in may be less dangerous and more cost-effective in the long run. If your AC unit is not cooling, here are a few warning signs that may trigger you to contact your local HVAC company.
An air conditioner cools down a space by removing the current heat through the evaporator coil. The heat moves from one place to another through refrigerant, the chemical that moves in and out of the coils and lines of an air conditioner as it shifts between liquid to gas states. When there is a leak in the system, the refrigerant will stop doing its job from absorbing heat, which causes the AC unit to not cool your home.
This problem can only be truly diagnosed by a professional HVAC technician. However, you may come across some warning signs yourself such as hearing a hissing noise when the pressure of the cabinet escapes or seeing frost across the indoor coil.
To find the leak, your technician will use either an electronic refrigerant leak detector or inject an ultraviolet dye into the system. They will then scan the space with an ultraviolet light to find the leaks.
After the leak is repaired, the refrigeration is evacuated and pressurized with nitrogen to remove moisture from the system. This ensures no other leaks occur and that non-condensable gases don’t exist in the system.
The more efficient the leak repair is, the less likely issues will arise in the future.
Dirty Air Filters
Air filters filter out the dust particles and can retain some of that dust and pollutants over time. This blocks the air flow throughout your home and can lead to a disturbance in the air, causing breakdowns.
The air filter should be changed out monthly as a clogged HVAC filter will lead to a broken system. You should also have semi-annual HVAC professional maintenance appointments to devoid of any further filter problems.
Broken Condenser Fan Motor
The fan may be running at a slow speed or won’t run at all. This will decrease the airflow system, supplying less to no air to the vents. When the fan malfunctions, it affects the heat that comes through causing a loss of cool air.
If overheating does occur, you may have a larger repair issue on your hands. Once you hear a buzzing noise or notice a burning smell around the unit, immediately turn it off. The symptoms for a broken condenser fan motor may not be noticeable off the bat, so regular maintenance and checkups are necessary.
Air conditioners are composed of electrical and mechanical devices, and any of these can go out at any time.
The compressor is the main heart of the air conditioning system. This is what circulates the refrigerant throughout the unit. A burned out or over-exposed electrical system leads to a bad compressor and a short between the compressor and the steel parts of the motor.
Constantly check on the electrical system of the compressor to keep an eye on issues as you will need to replace the whole compressor if it breaks. You can also clean the coils of an outdoor compressor to help the AC blow cool air. If the compressor won’t turn on at all, it may be a capacitor issue.
A failed capacitor will cause the whole AC unit to not run. If the AC is running but the fan is not, then you have a bad capacitor.
You will need to remove the cover of the air conditioner unit to thoroughly view the compressor or capacitor. Especially if there are no visible signs of damage, you should call your local qualified HVAC company to check the system with special technical equipment.
Sometimes, your system’s pressure gauges will give you this information.
Bad wires can also cause your air conditioner to not blow cold air. Frayed and corroded wires can be seen from the outside of the system. Leave this for the professionals to deal with.
This is not too common, but it does occur. You may see the problem occur if you can visibly see the unit, and it only takes one layer of solid ice to freeze it.
A frozen unit means a frozen evaporator coil. This will freeze due to the local condensation, cold temperatures, and no evaporation.
Condensation is already unavoidable. When it’s a colder area and you have water build up on the evaporator coil through condensation, the water will not evaporate. This causes the unit to freeze.
There are sensors in place to prevent this from occurring, but sometimes temperatures can be misread, especially when the temperature drops so quickly. When the AC drops low enough, ice build ups occur. This causes the temperature to lower and the amount of evaporation to drop. You will notice this symptom with the AC unit not cooling.
When you are having issues troubleshooting why your AC unit is not cooling, contact your local HVAC professional to diagnose the problem and get the job done right.
The root cause of the issue may be more complicated than what meets the eye, and when the problem gets too complicated, know that you don’t have to solve it alone. The hotter the days, the more work your air conditioning unit is putting out. Any suspicion of problems is better dealt with sooner than later.