In the Midwest, 91% of homes have AC of some sort. We have become accustomed to having AC. So an air conditioner not cooling will cause your family to get miserable quick.
There are some simple checks you can perform that have quick solutions to get you up and running again in no time. We will also let you know when it’s time to call a professional to assist.
1. It Wasn’t Installed Correctly
This is something that should be considered if you have recently had a new system installed. The entire system or just a part of it may not be installed correctly.
Another common problem is that you installed a unit that is far too large or small for the size of your home. Have your installation company come back out and check the system to ensure this isn’t the problem.
The Way to Fix This
Your installer will come out and check that the system is functioning properly. If it is determined that the unit is too smaller or large, you may need to replace the unit.
The installer may determine that the system and unit were not installed correctly. If this is the case, they will fix the mistakes.
2. The Condenser Unit Was Not Maintained
The condenser on the outside of your home needs to be maintained but is the one part of the system that is most often ignored. For proper function, the condenser needs to have free airflow.
The condenser works by receiving enough outside cool air to release heat from the condenser coils. If the heat isn’t released, then it isn’t removed from your home and your home won’t cool.
Because the condenser is outside, dirt, weeds, and debris can cause a blockage. So take a stroll outside and check to see if your lawn has grown up around your condenser.
Use a weed wacker to easily clear out the growth around your unit. Once a year clean out the inside of the condenser.
If there are trees in your yard, leaves and debris can easily fall into the unit. As the leaves build up, the cooling efficiency decreases.
3. Not Enough Airflow
Check to see if you can feel air coming out of the air vents in your home. It doesn’t matter how much cool air your system is pumping, if it isn’t coming out of the vents, it’s pointless.
The Lighter Check
The easiest way to check for air flow is to turn on your system. Then hold a lit lighter in front of each vent. You should see the air affecting the flame.
Do not check one or two vents. Your system is designed to be functional with all vents, so check each one.
Start with the flame right in front of the vent. Slowly walk away from the vent towards the opposite side of the room.
You should be able to get to close to the other side of the room and still have the air affecting the flame. The rooms closer to your system will be stronger than those farthest away.
How to Fix the Airflow
Check your air filters and see if they are dirty. If they are, replace them and do the lighter check again.
If the air flow isn’t any better you should consider hiring a company to come out. They will clean your ducts in case there is a blockage further up in the system.
4. You Have Electrical Problems
If you have tripped a breaker but it didn’t flip to the off position, you have probably found your problem.
Look through you breakers for two or three that are labeled for your AC system. You might see HVAC, AC, Air Conditioner, Condenser, or Compressor.
Reset the Breakers
Flip the breakers to the off position. Then flip them back on again. The problem should be resolved.
5. The Thermostat is Malfunctioning
The most simple problem could be that the batteries died in your thermostat. A more complicated potential problem could be the circuitry malfunctioned.
Check the display and see if it is indicating anything or just blank. This is the most obvious symptom that something is wrong.
How to Fix It
Simply change the batteries out and see if that fixes the problem. If you still have a blank screen you will need to get an HVAC Professional to look at it.
They may be able to replace the circuit board for you. If they can’t do this, then the entire thermostat will need to be replaced.
Because the thermostat is connected to the AC system, you need to have a licensed professional do this work. This is even more so the case if you have multiple zones in your home.
6. The Air Handler Has Frozen
You have tried all of the other solutions and nothing has worked. Your last resort is to check if the evaporator coils have frozen.
The ice that is surrounding your coils blocks them from coming into contact with the refrigerant. This means that the air won’t get cooled and your home won’t be dehumidified.
Get the Air Handler UnFrozen
Turn the system off and wait at least 24 hours for the whole system to defrost. Make sure the system is dry before you turn it back on.
Before you turn the system back on, check to see if the coils are clean. If they are dirty, clean them.
An HVAC company has special cleaning products to clean the coils. You could attempt to clean them yourself with a soft brush.
Do not bend the fins or coils while cleaning! This will cause more damage than the good of cleaning.
7. The Refrigerant is Low
Your AC system needs to have refrigerant to be able to cool the air going into your home. Have your HVAC professional come out and measure the levels in your system.
Leave this to the Professionals
Measuring the refrigerant in your system requires special tools that you will not have. There are also strict regulations for the proper disposal of refrigerant.
Air Conditioner Not Cooling
If you are noticing that the air in your home is hot, your AC system is probably having a problem. When the air conditioner not cooling is making your home miserable, start simple with checking for blockages or lack of power supply.
Once you determine that the problem isn’t a simple fix, check the coils for potential freezing. Call a professional when you determine that the solution is beyond that of your abilities.
Read these seven warning signs that your air conditioner is broken.