Troubleshooting Your Air Conditioning Like a Pro

Your central AC unit may be a large appliance, but it’s not too complex to troubleshoot if it’s not properly working. In fact, many homeowners and property managers are perfectly competent to perform a few diagnostics before calling the professionals. Explore these professional tips so that your AC unit runs without fail throughout the spring and summer.

Check the Switch First

It’s not uncommon for the switch to be in the wrong position. The household expects cool air and the system isn’t providing it. Make sure to change the switch from “heat” to “cool.” In some cases, the switch is actually hovering over the “off” position. 

Activate the AC system, and verify that it’s working. Many service calls can be avoided by just paying extra attention to the switch’s position.

Examine the Air Filter

An AC component that can often cause a problem is the filter. Homeowners must remember to replace or rinse the filter as necessary. As the filter fills with particulates, the membrane slowly clogs up. No air can move through the filter at some point. The system is literally being choked.

Replace the filter every 30 days if it’s being used on a daily basis. The system will have a longer lifespan as a result.

Look at the Circuit Breakers

If you have absolutely no power running to the AC unit, take a trip to your main electrical panel. The system may have tripped a breaker. Switch the breaker on, and run the AC unit for a few cycles.

A random tripping of the breaker isn’t cause for concern. If it continually trips, however, there’s an electrical issue that must be addressed. A wire or electronic component may be drawing too much current.

Clean Around the Outdoor Unit

The outdoor unit may be in a sheltered area, but it can still be covered in dust or leaves. Clear away any items around the outdoor unit. Glance inside of the unit, and verify if any debris resides in there. Don’t damage the outdoor unit’s condenser fins either. Every part plays a role in the outdoor unit’s operations. If a good cleaning doesn’t seem to help, a professional visit may be warranted.

Clear Away Vent Obstacles

Homeowners might be surprised that certain obstacles around the property can create AC-unit problems. Look around each room and locate the wall or ceiling vents. Make sure that there are no items in front of the openings. Any obstacles impede the air’s movement. Air must move in and out of the AC unit for it to work in a proper manner.

Try the AC system again with every vent cleared of obstacles. This troubleshooting tip might fix most of the system’s problems.

Listen for the Fan

A large fan located in the outdoor unit will spin to remove hot air from the home. Switch the AC unit on at the control panel and listen to the outdoor fan. A clicking noise indicates that the fan is trying to run, but it doesn’t have enough power.

Connected to the fan is a capacitor. This electronic component simply controls the current moving through the system. The fan requires a steady stream of power for safe operations.

It’s possible for the homeowner to replace the capacitor. If you don’t feel comfortable with this project, however, a professional can always complete the job.

How Hammock’s AC can Help

Give us a call today for any heating and cooling questions. We’re pleased to serve the Atlanta Metro area. With three generations of family dedicated to the HVAC arts, our team has seen and repaired almost every issue. Make your home as comfortable as possible with an AC-unit checkup. Contact us today!!

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