Fixing your AC doesn't have to be as complicated and expensive as it sounds. Here are 9 of the most common AC repair tips you can try to fix that broken down air conditioner.
AC Repair Tactics You Should Try Before Calling a Technician
1. Dirty Air Filters
One of the easiest and most common AC repair tips is to regularly check your air filter and keep it clean. Your filter is crucial in maximizing the quality of indoor air and making sure your unit functions as efficiently as possible.
A dirty air filter blocks the airflow of your unit. Later on, this could lead to a whole range of other problems, such as a frozen condenser unit or limited cooling power.
To fix this, just read your airconditioner's instructions and follow what it says on how often you should change your air filter. Some have to be replaced every month, while others are reusable and simply need to be cleaned when they become dirty.
One simple way to determine whether your air filter already needs cleaning or replacing is to check if it lets light pass through it. If yours doesn't, then it's time for it to be replaced or cleaned.
2. Thermostat Issues
The thermostat measures the temperature in the evaporating coil and adjusts its cooling power depending on the room's condition. A range of thermostat problems can also be the reason behind your AC not working properly.
When incorrectly calibrated, it might not tell your air conditioner to turn on when it has to. A thermostat that's not in the right position can also cause your AC unit to randomly turn on and off.
A quick AC repair tip is to inspect your thermostat and make sure it has fresh batteries. Check whether it is turned on, clean, level, not directly affected by sunlight, and in the right settings. Just be sure to have your manual in hand before you start troubleshooting.
Additionally, the thermostat sensor should also be placed near the evaporator coil but without touching it. If it does, just bend the wire holding the sensor to adjust it.
You can also try setting your thermostat to its lowest temperature setting and check whether it works properly under these conditions. If the problem persists, then it's better to call your AC repair technician who might have to recalibrate the thermostat altogether.
3. Dirty Condenser Coils
Checking the condenser coils that work to discharge the heat from the room out of the building is also a necessary part of your AC repair checklist. Often, these are part of the outdoor unit, making it exposed to dirt and other pollutants.
Dirty coils can affect the transfer of heat, making the AC unit work harder and adding to its wear and tear. You can use a water hose to clean them at least once a year, but if it's too dirty, a technician can use a chemical cleaner to remove the grime.
4. Frozen Evaporator Coil
Ironically, a frozen evaporator coil is a common reason behind the warmer-than-usual temperatures.
This coil holds heat-absorbing refrigerant. Ice tends to form on the AC's evaporator coil when airflow is blocked or diminished, leading to the warm or completely no air coming out of your AC.
Restricted airflow can result from dirty air filters, blocked ducts and vents, a faulty fan, or low refrigerant.
5. Low Refrigerant
If you notice that the air in your room or house seems somewhat sticky or warm, this might be caused by a low refrigerant level. Having low refrigerant in your AC makes it hard for the system to remove humidity and heat from the air.
Your AC's refrigerant is somewhat similar to the oil of a car. Check it and refill as necessary.
If it needs refilling too frequently, then this might be a symptom of a bigger problem such as a leak. If this is the case, it's better to call an AC repair technician who can fix it.
6. Uncleaned or Leaking Ducts
You might notice some rooms in your house being cooler or warmer than others. This might also be a sign of improper airflow in the ducts.
The ducts, though seemingly sealed behind your ceiling and walls, are actually prone to tears because of rodents, pests, or just simple wear and tear. A rip in those ducts can cause cool air to escape inside the walls.
They can make your house warmer and force the system to work harder. If you think this is the case, it's better to call an HVAC technician to diagnose and repair the problem.
7. Drainage Problems
It's natural for your AC to remove moisture from the air and drain it outside. However, a simple clogged drainage can be the cause of numerous AC problems.
If the water isn't able to drain properly, it can cause fungus, mildew, and mold to develop. This leads to bad odors being blown out of the system.
Additionally, the drain line, similar to the filter, can also get clogged with lint, dust, dirt, or algae. With the drain line clogged, the pan can overflow and flow back up, damaging both the system and your house.
Make sure to inspect, clean, and maintain your drain line regularly to prevent this. Improperly mounted air conditioners are especially prone to drainage problems.
8. Connection Problems
Another common problem people encounter is an AC that won't start.
This might be because of a tripped circuit breaker or a blown fuse. If this is the case, just replace the fuse or reset your circuit breaker as necessary.
Frequently turning the AC on and off can also wear out its compressor and fan controls. The blower motor, capacitors, compressor, and condenser fan motor all produce an electrical connection that starts the unit and keeps it running.
Worn out parts can prevent your AC from making the necessary electrical connections it needs to run. You should check if these are involved with the issue.
Most of the time, however, if the AC repair tips above don't do the trick, then it's best to call an AC repair technician to avoid causing any further damage.
9. Improper Operation
Perhaps two of the most common causes of air conditioning problems are also the simplest — outside doors and open windows. Leaving doors and windows open makes it hard for your air conditioner to regulate the temperature in the house or the room.
The quickest tip to maintain your system and avoid having to go through all the AC repair tips above is simply to close your doors and windows in the first place. Make sure your system performs as efficiently as it possibly can.
Avoid having to go through all these AC repair tips in the first place by following these 15 air conditioner maintenance tips by Word of Advice TV:
The nine AC repair hacks are some of the easiest tricks you can try if your air conditioner doesn't function the way it should. Again, if the tips above don't do the trick, or if you're not sure about what you're doing, it's still better to call an AC repair technician who can diagnose and repair it as necessary.
Are there other AC repair tips that we might have missed? Share them with us in the comments section below!
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