Why Isn’t My Air Conditioning Unit Working?

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So you came home from a long day at work to find that your house feels like a sauna. We’ve all been there. In many cases, you may need to call a professional to get the help you need. But before you pick up the phone, ask yourself these four simple questions. The answers may be able to help us determine the source of the problem, and more importantly, how to fix it.

Is the thermostat set correctly?

Start by taking a look at the thermostat. Make sure that it’s in air conditioning or cooling mode, and that it’s set to a reasonable temperature. If it’s set to 75° degrees, but it’s 85° in your home, you have a problem. Quickly run through the settings of your thermostat. Do the settings appear normal? For a basic thermostat, this is pretty easy to determine. For programmable thermostats, it may take a little more familiarity.

For more information, take a look at our blog on How to Get the Most Out of Your Programmable Thermostat.

Is the air conditioning unit running?

Once you confirm that the thermostat is set properly and that the A/C unit is supposed to be running, the next step is to take a quick field trip to inspect both your indoor and outdoor air conditioning units Most outdoors units are located behind or next to your home.  Indoor units are usually located either in the crawlspace or attic of your home.

Does it sound like each unit is running? Are the fans blowing? Even though newer units are designed to run quieter than older models, you should still be able to tell whether or not it’s running when you’re standing beside it. If it’s running, step back inside your home and inspect your air vents. If there is no air coming out of the vents or if it’s blowing warm air, you likely have an issue.

Are there strange smells or noises coming from the unit?

There are lots of different possible smells and sounds that could be coming from your units if there is a problem. If you hear or smell anything out of the ordinary, turn off the unit and call a technician immediately.

Are the breakers turned on?

Unless you turned the breakers off yourself and simply forgot to turn them back on, something caused the breakers to trip. If you find that the breakers are tripped, try turning them back on once. If it happens again, the air conditioner may be the cause of the problem.

Common causes of tripped breakers include a dirty condenser coils, lack of refrigerant, or a condenser coil fan malfunction. For these types of problems, it is best to schedule a service call.

By the time you get through this list of questions, you likely have a good idea of where the issue lies. It may be a simple fix, but oftentimes it will require the help of a professional. If you are located near Raleigh or Wilmington, North Carolina, Newcomb and Company is here for you. We’ve been keeping our friends, families, and neighbors comfortable for over 60 years!

 

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