Common Problems With Air Conditioning Units

air conditioning unitsRoutine maintenance from All Seasons Heating, Cooling & Insulation keeps air conditioning units running at their peak, so ignoring required tasks could lead to several common problems. Numerous signs could signal you have an ailing cooling system, such as decreased airflow from your vents, moldy odors when your A/C is running, an outdoor fan failing to kick on, frequent cycling on and off, and frozen coils. Ignoring these signs could lead to a total system failure. Here are some common air conditioning problems to watch for.

Dirty Filters

Clogged air filters restrict airflow, decreasing your air conditioner’s efficiency and reducing its ability to effectively cool your home. Air conditioning units may have washable or disposable filters, but most use standard pleated paper filters. How often you should change your filters hinges on your lifestyle and household occupants. A general rule of thumb is every 30 to 90 days. However, if you have pets or suffer from allergies, change filters at least monthly.

Crowded Compressor

A compressor pumps refrigerant from the outdoor unit to the indoor unit and requires adequate airflow to function properly. Trees, shrubs, plants, fencing, mulch or other items too close to the outdoor unit can restrict airflow and cause serious problems, including compressor failure. Keep at least two to three feet of free space between the bottom and sides of your compressor and any vegetation or structure. At the top, allow five feet of clearance between the unit and any trees or other canopy above.

Blocked Vents

In forced-air cooling systems, dirty or blocked vents (also called registers) can restrict airflow and increase pressure on the blower motor. This causes the motor to use more energy or fail to adequately move air throughout your home. Blocked vents can also increase air leakage from ductwork, cause coils to freeze or damage the compressor. Keep furniture, rugs and other objects away from vents, and vacuum regularly to remove dust buildup.

Low Refrigerant

Refrigerant is the chemical that cools the air in air conditioning units before it’s blown out through your vents. Low refrigerant usually means it was undercharged at installation or you have a leak. If you suspect a leak or need your refrigerant recharged, contact a trained technician.

Things To Try First

Before you call a professional for repairs, there are some things you can do first to try to fix the problem. This includes ensuring your thermostat is properly set to COOL, the fan is set to ON or AUTO, and the temperature is set below the ambient air in your home. Also, check to see if there’s a blown fuse or tripped breaker, vents are open and unobstructed, and the filter is clean. If your unit still won’t kick on, try lowering the thermostat to the lowest temperature setting to see if it will start. If your problem persists, contact the experts at All Seasons Heating, Cooling & Insulation in Midland, Michigan, at 989-832-2752 for a free repair estimate.