What to Do About an AC Not Cooling?
If an air conditioner is not cooling a home, it could be an indication that major repairs are necessary. If an air conditioner is not cooling, it could mean that the compressor is bad or that there’s a refrigerant leak. But, not always. Several times a month, all technicians go to homes only to find out that the cause was something simple. Some of these things might seem like no-brainers to you, but I assure you, we see them all regularly.
The Thermostat Settings
Is the thermostat set to “cool” and turned down below room temperature? Sometimes people (or children) bump or play with the settings. You’ll want to make sure your thermostat is set to “cool.” and that the temperature you dial is set to is at least 5 degrees below the homes current temperature. It can take up to a 5 degree difference for some air conditioners to kick on.
Check the Breaker
If the Power is off to the indoor or outdoor unit, you’ll want to check the breaker. When you locate the breaker, just reset it. I have gone to home where people have told me they checked the breaker, only to reset the breaker and see everything work again. Sometimes, breakers get “half-tripped,” and they look okay, but they really aren’t. Just reset it either way to be safe.
Got a Rheem or a Lennox?
Most Rheem equipment has a red reset button located near refrigerant lines. If the breaker is good, and the outdoor unit is not running. Locate the red reset button , and push it.
The Condensate Pump
If that didn’t work, see if you have a condensate pump at the indoor unit. Some pumps have a safety shut-off switch that shuts down the outdoor unit if the pump overfills and fails to pump. So check the pump to see if it is working. Sometimes, just cleaning the live with a shop-vac is all that’s needed.
The Disconnect Box
If that wasn’t the problem, you should have a disconnect box mounted on the wall outside next to you air conditioner. These come in many styles. Some have an on-off switch, some have a pull-out plug. Some have a circuit breaker and some even have fuses. If it has a breaker, make sure it didn’t trip. If it has fuses, make sure they are good.
Clogged Filters, Closed Vents or Open Windows
We’ve seen them all before. Sometimes, people move into a new home and don’t know where the filters are. Sometimes, people have moved here from cooler climates and just didn’t know. These things are worth checking before calling to save the service call fees.
Dirty Condenser Coils
The outside unit is surrounded by aluminum coils, that can get dirty over the course of the year (or years.) Dirty condenser coils will affect the units overall efficiency, and cleaning them is easy, so they’re worth a shot before calling for help.
To clean your coils, just gently rinse them off with a garden hose. If they’re exceptionally dirty, condenser cleaners are available on Amazon.com or at your local Home Depot.
Hopefully, you found a simple solution to your problem. If you did, please share this article, or like it on Facebook.
If you didn’t, then it might be time to call a pro. Gauges, meters and refrigerant licenses will likely be needed to get the job done. If you’re in the Phoenix area, we’d be happy to help. We offer fast 24 HR service, and offer a Best Price Guarantee on all completed repairs.