- On August 19, 2021
As you read about common A/C problems and solutions, you’ll learn:
- Even if you can’t necessarily fix the problem yourself, learning how to diagnose common air conditioner problems will help you know what to expect from your HVAC service.
- Even the most common A/C issues might be symptoms of more serious problems, so it’s important to get all the way to the root cause.
- Air conditioning problems rarely go away on their own, so getting prompt service will help you save money on HVAC repairs in the long run.
Common Air Conditioner Problems
Air conditioner repair can be costly, which is why so many people tend to put it off. Unfortunately, ignoring the problem normally makes it worse, which will only cost you more money in the long run. The good news is that learning how to identify some of the most common air conditioning problems can help you feel less uncertain when scheduling repairs. You generally know what to expect, which can help you avoid putting it off. Learn how to identify the following, and you’ll feel like you’re playing whack-a-mole whenever common A/C problems rear their ugly head.
1. Air Conditioner Is Not Turning On
To be fair, this is one of the scariest air conditioning problems. It only takes a few hours for your Phoenix home to become a sweatbox when the A/C goes out on a hot summer day. Check the thermostat to make sure it has power. Most don’t rely on batteries anymore, so make sure the circuit breaker isn’t tripped if the thermostat is dead. This prevents you from feeling embarrassed when a trained professional shows up just to flip a switch on the breaker.
Once you’ve confirmed that it’s not just a tripped breaker, it’s time to call a professional before things get steamy inside. Even if it was a tripped breaker, you might want to find out what caused that in the first place.
2. Air Conditioner Not Blowing Cold Air
Prepare to feel handy because this might be one of the easiest problems to fix if it’s only caused by a dirty air filter. If your filter is clogged, simply replace it or clean it (if you use reusable air filters). The dirty filter is blocking airflow and leading to freezing or other problems. If the filter looks fine, unfortunately, this problem will require a professional inspection.
3. Air Conditioner Freezing up Outside Unit
There are a few potential things that might cause this. In the realm of easy DIY A/C repairs, you can try looking for a dirty filter that would be causing poor airflow. Also, check the outside unit to ensure it’s not blocked with debris or coated with dirt. If neither of those proves to be the issue, call a contractor and have them look for low coolant levels and blower motor problems. It’s definitely caused by low outside temperatures if you live near Phoenix.
4. A/C Refrigerant Leak
Inspect your HVAC equipment and look for sounds like hissing or bubbling. If you hear either of those or even see a tear in the refrigerant line, you’ll be able to point your HVAC contractor directly to the problem for a quick repair. Symptoms of this problem include things like low efficiency, uneven temperatures throughout the home, and increasing utility bills.
5. Air Conditioner Making Noises
The air conditioner in your home might make any number of different noises depending on the problem, so try to see if it sounds like any of the following:
- Buzzing or humming might be related to an electrical problem like faulty wiring or failing electrical components.
- Clicking might also indicate an electrical problem, more specifically with the relay.
- As mentioned above, hissing and bubbling could mean that your refrigerant is escaping.
- Thumping, banging, and rattling noises mean that there is probably a problem in the motor assembly or blower.
- The compressor and fan motor can start to screech when they’re having problems.
6. Frozen Evaporator Coil
As mentioned above, freezing happens when there’s poor airflow in your unit. Check the filter to see if it’s dirty or clogged. If that’s not the case, freezing may occur because of blocked or dirty vents, a broken fan, or something else that causes the airflow to become backed up.
7. A/C Electronic Control Failure
The electronic controls can wear out when your A/C turns off and on a lot. The wiring in your system and the components themselves eventually become too worn down to start the unit by creating a connection between your condenser fan motor, compressor, and blower motor. Working with electricity is dangerous, so this is a job best left for the professionals.
8. Air Conditioner Leaking Water Outside
This might not necessarily be a problem if it happens on an especially hot or humid day. We don’t get very many of those here in the Valley of the Sun, though, so the problem is more likely related to one of the following:
- Dirty Air Filters
- Blocked Drain Pipe
- Low Coolant Levels
- Broken Condensate Pan
If your system was only installed recently, it could also be that the installation wasn’t done properly.
9. A/C Drainage Problem
Check to see if your drain pipe has become clogged by dust, dirt, or other types of contaminants. When water backs up, you might start to notice unpleasant things like mold, fungus, mildew, and more, which are often accompanied by horrible smells. Make sure you get your drain line maintained regularly to prevent this from happening. If you notice that you constantly have to clear your drain line, it might mean that your air conditioner wasn’t installed properly and it’s leaning at an angle.
10. A/C Sensor Problems
The air conditioner’s sensor should be near the evaporator coil but not touching it. If you don’t know what that means, you definitely shouldn’t be trying to force any adjustments. If you ever do try to clean or adjust your sensor, it’s important to turn your system off first, so you don’t damage it or put yourself at risk.
Air Conditioning Service and Repair in Phoenix, AZ
Here at Howard Air Conditioning, we’ve been providing HVAC services in Phoenix since 1977. We’ve seen just about everything since then, and we’ve never run into any A/C problems we couldn’t take care of.
Contact us today as soon as you notice the first signs of trouble. We’ll send an experienced HVAC contractor to your home or business right away to restore the function of your system and get everyone comfortable again as soon as possible.
Featured Image: Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock