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As the temperatures rise, your air conditioner becomes your home’s best friend and your favorite appliance. While you might enjoy some time outdoors during the summertime, the day is only made better by walking into a cool, comfortable home. Your air conditioner does its job without you thinking too much about it. So, when you walk through the door and are greeted by warm, stuffy air, you might be a bit confused. You may also, understandably, be a bit concerned.

An air conditioner that’s not blowing cold air can be a severe problem. While some issues that cause air conditioners to blow warm air might require professional HVAC service, some are a simple fix. Here are some of the most common reasons why your air conditioner isn’t blowing cold air and what you can do about them.

Your Thermostat is On the Wrong Setting

Sometimes, the reason your air conditioner isn’t blowing cold air is as simple as your thermostat is set to the wrong setting. This might be the case if you notice that your air conditioner blows cold sometimes, but warm other times. Please take a look at your thermostat and see what it’s set to. If the fan is set to ON instead of AUTO, this means that the fan is blowing all of the time instead of just when the air conditioner itself is on. Switching the fan to AUTO will make it, so the fan blows only when the air conditioner is cooling your air. Not only will this stop warm air, but it will also help to lower your energy bills.

The Air Filter is Clogged

Your air filter has a critical job. It removes dirt, allergens, particles, and other debris from the air before cooling it and sending it back into your home. Over time, the filter fills up. When this happens, your air conditioner has to work harder. It struggles to circulate enough cold air, and your evaporator coils can freeze over. When this happens, your air conditioner won’t be able to provide your home with enough cold air. Air filters should typically be changed every three months but may need to be replaced more frequently when your air conditioner is being used more. Take a look at the filter and change it if it’s dirty.

There’s a Tripped Circuit Breaker

A power surge can cause a circuit breaker to trip. Air conditioners typically use two breakers, one for the inside unit and one for the outside. If one gets tripped but the other one doesn’t, the air won’t be adequately cooled. Inspect your breaker box. Locate the switches for your air conditioner and make sure that they are both switched to the ON positions.

Your Air Conditioner is Dirty

The evaporator unit inside of your home absorbs the warm air. The heat is transferred to the outdoor unit or condenser. From this unit, the heat is dispersed to the outside air. If the condenser is covered in dirt and debris, however, it won’t be able to disperse the warm air properly. As a result, your air conditioner can struggle to keep your home cool. If the evaporator coils are dirty, your air conditioner will struggle to remove warm air. Your air conditioner should be cleaned regularly. While you can clean the condenser yourself, the evaporator coils should be cleaned by a professional. Routine air conditioner maintenance can be beneficial for ensuring that your air conditioner is clean and functioning in tip-top shape.

Your Air Conditioner is Low on Refrigerant

Refrigerant is the liquid in your air conditioner that absorbs the warm air to the evaporator coils. If you don’t have enough refrigerant or any at all, your air conditioner can’t correctly draw in the warm air. Low refrigerant can point toward a refrigerant leak. Running your air conditioner without enough coolant can cause serious problems. This issue should not be handled on your own. Refrigerant leaks should be handled by your HVAC specialist.

There’s an Air Duct Leak Somewhere

Cool air travels through a series of ducts to reach the different parts of your homes. These ducts are tightly sealed. If the seal loosens or you lose insulation, the cold air can escape before it reaches its desired destination. As a result, the rooms in your home won’t get as cool as you want them. Your air conditioner begins to struggle to keep your home at your desired temperature. An HVAC specialist can identify where the leak is and fix it for you.

Failing or Broken Parts

Your air conditioner is made up of many parts. These parts don’t last forever. They can begin to go out over time, or they can break. A failing or broken fan motor means that your condenser unit can’t help to disperse heat properly. This means that your air conditioner can’t adequately cool your home. A broken or bad compressor is another severe issue. These parts can be replaced in many cases. In some cases, however, you may have to replace your entire outdoor unit.

Final Thoughts

An air conditioner that isn’t blowing cold air can be a scary thing, especially right amid a heat wave. While some issues are easily remedied, some are more complicated and therefore require professional service. If you’ve checked the air filter, your thermostat, and the breaker box, and your air conditioner still isn’t functioning correctly, contact your HVAC specialist today!

 

Billy Henley
Billy Henley is the Vice President of Operations for BHI Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. Before becoming vice president, he worked six years in the field as a service technician and has over ten years of experience working in the industry. Billy often shares his knowledge about plumbing and HVAC issues on industry publications.

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