We know that it’s a bit early to start talking about getting an air conditioner repaired. Summer doesn’t officially arrive for more than a week, and the local weather hasn’t hit a consistent heat streak yet. But an air conditioner can fail at any time. If you head into the summer knowing what warning signs to watch for, you’ll have a better chance of avoiding a major air conditioning breakdown on one of the hottest days of the year.
When you notice any of these warnings signs that your AC isn’t working the way it should, call for a Haddonfield, NJ, HVAC contractor to check it out and see what needs to be repaired. The sooner you act, the less opportunity for the air conditioner’s problem to worsen.
What counts as an unusual sound from an air conditioner? Anything that interrupts the standard whir and hum of the fans and compressor. Here are a few of the more common “bad sounds” you don’t want to hear echoing from your AC:
There are a variety of possible causes for these strange sounds, which is why we don’t recommend you attempt any DIY fixes. Let the professionals track down what’s causing the sounds—whether it’s an overheating motor or leaking refrigerant—and have it repaired.
Ice on the evaporator coil
Ice should never form on any part of your air conditioning system. Unfortunately, since people associate the cool feeling from an AC with ice, they make the mistake of ignoring ice when it appears on the evaporator coil. Ice on the coil will eventually block the AC from absorbing heat from the air. It can also indicate a serious repair issue affecting the system, such as refrigerant leaks. HVAC professionals can find out what caused the ice to develop, fix it, and then defrost the coil. (Please don’t try to scrape off the ice on your own! You may damage the coil and you won’t solve the root problem.)
When the air conditioner is running, take a tour of the house to see if cool air is coming from all the vents. Are there any rooms that feel hotter than normal? If the extra heat isn’t from something like sun exposure, there may be trouble with the air conditioner or the ventilation system. This is often a sign of an older air conditioner that’s dying—and you’ll be glad to have it replaced as early in the season as possible.
Frequent starting and stopping
The AC’s compressor shouldn’t turn on and off multiple times during an hour. If this happens, it means the air conditioner is short-cycling and not completing a full cooling cycle. This could mean the AC has lost refrigerant, the thermostat is malfunctioning, or the system was improperly installed. No matter the cause, you want short-cycling stopped ASAP, or the strain it places on the air conditioner will shorten its service life while hiking up your utility bills.
Don’t wait for your AC to break down on you this summer! Gibson Heating & Cooling serves the Greater Cherry Hill, NJ area.