Troubleshooting Common Problems With a Central Air Conditioning Unit

Never wait until your central air conditioning unit shuts down completely before you have certain repairs addressed; ignoring or overlooking problems with the unit can mean more costly repairs that could be avoided with some basic maintenance or with a quick fix. Note a few troubleshooting tips that you might need for a central air conditioning unit and how to address some problems on your own, or know what to expect by way of a repair:

1. The unit turns on and off repeatedly

Of course your unit will turn on and off according to the thermostat setting and the temperature in your home, but if the unit does this unnecessarily, you might want to note if it needs cleaning. When there is debris around the housing of the central unit, this can interfere with its temperature readings.

A dirty evaporator or dirty condenser coils can also interfere with its normal operation, so that it cannot read the temperature settings communicated by the thermostat inside. Give everything a good cleaning and clear away any debris by the unit, including cutting down tall grass that may be growing beside it, and note if this addresses the problem.

2. The unit runs but the air isn't cool enough

The central unit housing the condenser coils and other parts may be exposed to direct sunlight, so that the refrigerant can't work as well to cool air that is blown back into your home. If rooms on the inside are also in direct sunlight, the air conditioner may only be able to do so much to make them cooler. If you notice this problem just during the hottest days of the year, add some shade to the unit and note if this helps. If not, or if this is a problem even during cooler weather, a technician may need to recharge the refrigerant of the unit. 

3. The air conditioner seems to grind and then stops

Corrosion of the wires that control the motor and blower of an air conditioner can cause this to happen. The unit will get less and less power as the wires can provide it with less electricity, and then eventually the wiring will fail altogether. The air conditioner itself will then fail. If your unit is very old and you've never had the wiring checked or upgraded, this may be the first thing to consider. If the wiring isn't corroded or frayed, the motor itself may have simply burned out and it needs replacing.

To learn more, contact air conditioning repairs professionals to ask more questions.

About Me

Staying Warm and Keeping Cool: An HVAC Blog

Whether you are trying to stay warm or keep cool, a lot of the same elements are involved. For example, you need a well-insulated home and a functioning HVAC system. This blog is going to contain numerous posts about both heating and cooling. I plan to write about troubleshooting your HVAC system as well as about supporting it with the right windows, fans or other elements. I may also write shopping tips and guides on when to call for professional help. Before you start reading, let me introduce myself. My name is Ken. I was born in Winnipeg, Canada, where weather fluctuations are a fact of life, and a sturdy HVAC system is essential. While I was spending a gap year in England, I met my wife, Ariella, an Australian, and we've been living in Oz ever since. This is my first blog, and I hope you like it.