Troubleshooting Your Dallas Home’s AC Unit
Having any air conditioner problem at all is troubling enough. But it is a problem that gets many, many times worse when you come to realize that it could be one of a hundred or more things that could be causing it! An air conditioner failing to start, making odd sounds, creating odors, among other things could be any one of many things. So where do you even start?
The best place is by not starting alone! Being backed up by professional knowledge is the best place to start for nearly anything, and that’s why the licensed HVAC professionals at HVAC have crafted up this simple AC troubleshooting guide.
Air Conditioner Fails to Start
Not even getting so much as a putter? Unfortunately this is the worst place to start, since there are more possibilities here than anywhere else. But, a place to start it still is. Let’s go down a brief list starting with the easiest:
- Ensure your breaker isn’t tripped. Your HVAC system is on a dedicated circuit, so it should be easy to spot. If the breaker is tripped, set it firmly to “off,” give it three seconds and then shift it back on. If the problem persists or a trip happens again, call an expert.
- Inspect thermostat settings. Just to be safe, be sure that all settings are correct. If the thermostat is reading inaccurately, call in an HVAC accessory professional.
- Check your condensate system. If the condensate system (responsible for ridding the unit of humidity) is full or clogged, it will prevent the unit from turning on until the blockage is cleared.
- Look for leaking water or ice formations. These usually indicate a refrigerant leak, or a loaded air filter. The filter you can do on your own, but call on HVAC for the refrigerant issue!
These are the common issues that you can expect to handle all on your own, but any number of components or electrical systems could be keeping your system in a failure state. If you didn’t find the solution you were looking for, we would urge you to call in for professional repair!
Cooling System Starts But Doesn’t Cool
Is the system going through the motions but giving you nothing at all? Still a bit vague of a problem, but there are fewer possibilities here:
- Inspect the air filter. A dirty filter means bad air flow, which in turn means warm or tepid air.
- Check the outdoor unit. Similar to the filter, a dirty set of condenser fins will negate proper air flow and thermal transfer.
- Frosty formations. Ice can stop your system altogether, but it can also simply slow things down. If you spot frost on a working but not cooling unit, kick on the system in “fan mode” only to facilitate defrosting.
- Leaking refrigerant. A refrigerant leak will typically stink a bit, and there will be notable puddles that are decidedly not water. You’ll need professional service for this one.
Cooling System Is Making Noises
Odd sounds can be jarring, and they really should be treated as an emergency issue. Nearly all of them will relate to a component failure of some type, and leaving them alone can cause severe and potentially irreparable damage to your AC. What do the sounds mean? Depends on the noise! Are you hearing:
- Banging and clanking. Damaged or broken components.
- Squeals or squeaking. Failing fan belts.
- Metal on metal grind. Bearings wearing out or lacking lubricant.
- Buzzing. An electrical issue, which is definitely an emergency!