Unlike some other parts of the country where homeowners are turning on their air conditioners for the first time this week, we’ve already had ours going for a while. And we hope, as you’ve been running your cooling system, that it’s been working effectively.
But what if you don’t feel the cool air you expect? This tells a story, and it’s likely not a cheerful one. Granted, it might be a minor issue that you can fix right away. But it could be a major malfunction you’re facing, which will require the help of our AC technicians. Turn to us and we’ll ensure that whatever your AC problem is, it gets properly diagnosed. In the meantime, read on to discover what might be happening with your system.
You Might Have a Clogged Air Filter
This is actually a fairly common reason that an air conditioner might not be providing enough cool air—or rather, enough airflow. The air filter that comes standard with your air conditioner is in place to protect the inside components of your HVAC system (not your indoor air quality as many homeowners believe). Dust and debris can negatively impact parts like the blower assembly of your AC.
If too much debris builds up on the filter, it chokes off the air and the air conditioner won’t receive enough to cool down. Be sure to change your air filter if it is clogged, and remember to change it regularly every 1-3 months during periods of system use.
In some cases, changing the air filter is all you need to do in order to restore proper airflow.
Are You Using a Heat Pump?
Could your thermostat have accidentally been set by a member of your household to go into “heating” mode instead of “cooling” mode? In this case, you definitely won’t be getting the cool air you need! Check your thermostat to ensure it’s in cooling mode.
It could also be a problem with the reversing valve that allows your system to switch between modes. But since you’ve probably been running your system in cooling mode for a few weeks now, at least, chances are you would have noticed this airflow issue far sooner.
Is There a Refrigerant Leak?
Ideally, an air conditioning system only needs to be charged—that is, filled—with refrigerant once, during installation. However, corrosion can occur along the copper of the refrigerant lines as well as the coils, which could allow the chemical refrigerant to start leaking out. When this occurs, the cooling power will certainly begin dropping.
It’s imperative that you call out the pros for this kind of problem. We have to locate the leaks, seal them, and recharge the refrigerant. Failure to do so can eventually lead your compressor to shut down—and without the compressor you do not have a functioning air conditioner.
You May Have Duct Leakage
This isn’t as detrimental as a refrigerant leak, as it won’t directly cause your air conditioner to break down. However, damaged ducts can account for up to 30% of air loss. This means you’re paying for conditioned air that is escaping into unoccupied spaces such as your attic and crawlspace.
Additionally, if you feel less cooled air, the natural inclination is to turn down the thermostat. But damaged ductwork will never allow you to meet the desired temperature setting on your thermostat. Therefore, you’re just forcing your air conditioner to work harder than it needs to, which wears down on the system and will shorten its lifespan.