Posted July 30, 2014
Simple Checks Before You Call For Service
With temperatures that can only be described as sweltering, there are few things worse than coming home after a long day to find that your air conditioner is not working. While you may be inclined to immediately call your air conditioner company to come out for an emergency visit, this may not be necessary. Before you make that call, perform these simple checks.
1) Make sure your unit is on.
While this may seem ridiculous, it’s certainly worth checking. Ensure that the unit is on and that the thermostat is set lower than the current room temperature. In addition, once turned on, make certain your thermostat is working. If the thermostat is broken, it can result in the entire AC malfunctioning.
2) Check your circuit breakers.
If the breaker has tripped to the off position, your AC unit will not work. You can easily reset it by turning it off and then turning it back on.
3) Assess your filters.
Your filters are responsible for removing particles in the air. As a result, they can become clogged with dust. This makes your entire unit less efficient, reduces airflow, and increases resistance. Replace your filter to see if this is the problem.
4) Check the outside condenser unit.
It’s not unusual for the condenser to get clogged up by dirt, grass, animal hair, and other debris. If this appears to be the problem, make certain all power to the unit is cut off. Spray the fins of the unit with a mixture of water and a mild detergent, such as Dawn, or laundry detergent. Let it sit for approximately five minutes before taking your garden hose and spraying the fins out at a 45 degree angle. Keep doing this until the water is clear and you are sure that all of the grime and dirt has been removed.
5) Assess the fan blower belt for damage or excessive slack.
This is located on the side of the outside unit. If the belt is broken or frayed, replace the belt (replacements can be purchased at your local hardware store) to get the blower motor operational. If the belt is loose, you may need to tighten it or replace it completely.
6) Check your Freon levels.
When your Freon levels are low, your unit will not be able to cool your home efficiently. Freon is a noxious gas, so you may prefer to call a technician to add more to the unit. Of course, you can choose to top off the levels yourself, but you must hold a Section 608 or 609 EPA certification to purchase Freon.
Hopefully, one of the above tips will have your air conditioner up and running appropriately in a short period of time. However, if your unit is still not working properly, it’s time to call a certified technician.