We recently posted about the different sounds that indicate a need for AC repair. Strange or unfamiliar noises are certainly something to be aware of, but this is not the only sign of an air conditioner that needs repair.
Of course, just like a car or any other important piece of machinery, you can avoid the worst of repair needs with routine maintenance. This is a service we typically recommend in the spring before you need your air conditioner the most. But consistency is really what’s most important when it comes to your annual tune-ups. And still, even with maintenance, it’s good to know the signs that you need repair so you can give us a call right away. These signs include:
Lack of Cooling
Sure, this seems like a super apparent sign that you have an air conditioning problem. But there are a lot of homeowners out there who will just chalk it up to a very hot day and say their AC is “just struggling.”
Here’s the thing–your AC system should never be “just struggling!” Sure, it’s going to be hard to cool your home down on a 100° day if you wait ’til midday to even turn it on. But there’s no reason otherwise that your cooling system shouldn’t cool unless it needs repairs. If this occurs, it could be due to a refrigerant leak, a problem with your compressor, or a host of other reasons.
So maybe the air coming through your ventilation system is cool, but it’s not coming through as powerfully as it once did. There could be a couple of things going on here. Your air conditioner’s blower might be starting to fail, or you might have breached ductwork.
If some rooms in your home are getting better airflow from the vents than others are, you are probably looking at damaged or dirty ductwork. Ductwork can accumulate dust, mold, and even rodent nests. Damage can come from those aforementioned rodents or even extreme heat.
Do You Have a Thermostat Problem?
Sometimes, the problem with your air conditioner isn’t with the AC system itself, but rather with its control–the thermostat. It may be in an incorrect setting–when you have a problem with low cooling or poor airflow, check to make sure it’s not on “heating” mode or “fan-only” mode.
It could also be that your thermostat is miscalibrated. If you suspect this to be the case, the best thing to do is give our pros a call for repair, or potentially even a thermostat upgrade if it’s been a while since you’ve done so.
Even the most basic programmable thermostat is a step up from basic digital or manual thermostats, allowing you to pre-program when you want your air conditioner to cycle on. If you want to take this even further, you can consider the installation of a smart or Wi-Fi thermostat.