There is little worse than firing up your air conditioning on a hot summer day here in New Hampshire only to find that the system is not working properly. In many cases you can hear that the unit is on, but it is not cooling the home effectively. While we recommend testing out your air conditioning before the temperatures begin to soar, all is not lost. If your system is not cooling to capacity, there are some troubleshooting steps that you can do at home yourself to try to identify and correct the problem.
A common cause of an air conditioner not working at its full capacity is a dirty filter. Your air conditioning filter should be cleaned monthly when your system is being run. Dirty filters can restrict the airflow, significantly reducing the unit’s ability to cool the air. Similarly, check that your vents are not closed or blocked. Dirt, dust and pet hair can be a big contributor to blocked vents, which have a significant impact on the effectiveness of your air conditioning unit.
If your air conditioner is still not running at peak performance, you will want to check the compressor outside. The compressor needs adequate airflow to work properly, approximately two to three feet of space to the sides, and five feet above the unit. Clear this area from overgrown plants and debris that may be left over from the fall.
Since the air conditioners also run on electricity, check the circuit breakers. If the breaker is “off”, you can turn it on. However, if the breaker has been “tripped”, do not simply reset it. This may be caused by an issue with the unit that needs to be corrected first to prevent any long-term damage. Many air conditioning systems work with the heating system, so you should also make sure the furnace power switch is on.
In some cases a poorly running air conditioning unit is low on refrigerant. Refrigerant is a chemical that is needed to cool the air inside the air conditioning unit. If the refrigerant on your system is in fact low, this is a sure sign of a leak and should be addressed and repaired.
Regular maintenance is the most important part of keeping your air conditioning unit running at optimal efficiency, and free from problems. Annual checkups by a qualified technician can pinpoint any problems with your unit, before it becomes more serious.
At Joyce Cooling & Heating Inc., our service department is available 24-7 and work on all makes and models of central air conditioners.
Our technicians can help you understand all the strategies for maintaining healthy air. Contact us today for your heating and air conditioning needs 603-882-4244
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