When the A/C Stops Cooling, Know What to Look For

Posted On: July 07, 2014

With the main part of summer still ahead of us, you want to be comfortable in your air-conditioned home. However, what do you do if your A/C stops cooling? Before you pick up that phone and call an HVAC company to come look at your A/C, here are a few troubleshooting tips you can employ first.

Obviously, when your A/C stops cooling, the first symptom noticed is a lack of airflow from the air registers. However, your problem may be a simple issue that you can take care of yourself. Take the following initial steps:

  1. Check the thermostat and ensure that it’s set to cool. Lower the temperature setting by five degrees and look for the system to turn on. If the system does not come on, check to see if the circuit breaker tripped. If the circuit breaker is functioning normally, both the indoor blower and outdoor condensing unit should be on.
  2. If both units are working, examine the condensing coil in your split system’s outdoor unit. If the coil is dirty, wash it off with a garden hose. If this does not work, your unit may be low on refrigerant or leaking the chemical solution. (A problem with a dirty coil generally will represent as less cooling, rather than the system not working at all.)
  3. If your outdoor condensing unit appears to be functioning normally, but your air blower inside is not, turn off the power and check the wiring connections to the blower motor. If this step does not solve the problem, your blower motor may need to be replaced.
  4. If your blower is working, look for ice/frost buildup on the A/C or its refrigerant line. If present, shut down the A/C for a couple of hours but keep the air blower on. Turn the system back on and recheck for ice. The refrigerant line should be cold and have condensation on it. If not, there’s probably a refrigerant issue.

If you find that you cannot get your A/C to function after these simple steps, please contact us at Ernst Heating and Cooling. We have been proudly serving Bethalto, Hamel, Alton and other southwest Illinois communities since 1951.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hamel, Alton, Glen Carbon, Highland, Greenville, Bethalto, Edwardsville, Collinsville, Maryville, Staunton and Troy, Illinois about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “GSPhotography/Shutterstock”

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