Common signs that you need to replace your AC Unit
It’s the precipice of summer and it’s time to make sure that you and your family are ready for some fun in the sun. What many people don’t realize in the anticipation of the warmer weather is just how important it is to ensure that your home is properly cooled for when the hot temps hit.
While annual preventive maintenance is the best way to ensure a reliable service throughout the cooling season, issues may still occur from time to time. Continuing to run your air conditioner when problems exist can cause even further damage leading to large, costly repairs, shortened life span, and mid-season breakdowns. Take some time to familiarize yourself with this list of common signs.
Air conditioning maintenance can, unfortunately, easily go overlooked. If your AC unit is on the older side, there’s a nice chance for you that you could benefit from replacing it. Here are 5 common warning signs to look out for.
- Lack of cool air with limited air flow
This is probably the most obvious sign that your AC is having issues. If you turn on the Ac and the air doesn’t come out cold within a few minutes, there’s a chance that it’s not performing properly. The issue could also be a result of clogs in your ductwork which restricts airflow and will not resolve on their own. No matter, what the cause is, a lack of airflow is a sign that you have a problem that must be dealt with.
- Build up of moisture
Allows AC units will create moisture to some extent but those which are functioning properly should be able to handle it without issue. When moisture is present or leakage is occurring around the Air conditioner it could be a possibility that you have a refrigerant leak on your hands. This will not only affect the system to underperform but will also pose a serious health risk to you and your family. Even if it’s just water that’s building up, allowing the problem to persist can create an undesirable breeding ground for mold. If you notice an excess of water in any form around your air conditioning unit, give a call to a technician immediately. If you catch this problem before it comes, you could save a lot of money.
- Strange sounds
Have you noticed recently that your AC is noisier than it used to be? The presence of strange sounds such as grinding, squeaking, or chattering is normal and should not be taken as a typical sign of aging. Most AC units are supposed to operate at a noise level that I barely detectable so if your cooling system is drawing attention to itself, you know it’s time to upgrade to new equipment.
- Foul smells
In the same way that noticeable sound typically indicate a problem with heating and cooling systems, so too do strange smells. Your AC should be putting out clean, neutral smelling air, but this is not always the case when problems exist. A smokey or burning smell indicate serious problems andrequires immediate attention. You can get an air conditioning tune up in the spring time to combat some of these problems. A technician will clean the condenser coils and check the condensation lines for you, they’ll clean the unit’s electrical connections, and check the refrigerant levels, the thermostat and the motors in the unit.
- High energy bills
If your energy bills have been through the roof as of late, it could have something to do with the cooling system that is simply working too hard to get the job done. Even if the home is not properly cooled, your AC may be running up your monthly energy bills to a noticeable extent. Upgrade to new equipment and you can get the advantage to reduce your bills for years to come. Make sure to call an air conditioner repair company to get your air conditioner repaired.
- The age of your conditioning unit.
Take a look at the age of your AC unit before repair. AC units can last an average of 15-20 years. If your AC is nearing the age, it could just be wearing out due to normal wear and tear.
All these symptoms are caused by several common problems that affect AC units, including:
- Fan or condenser problem: If a fan breaks or a condenser stops, heat builds up in the unit, leading to a host of problems if not repaired immediately.
- Broken parts: Any noise you’re not accustomed to could indicate a problem with your unit. A belt could be broken or an AC component could have broken off and started rattling around inside the unit. Call for service immediately before more damage is done.
- Frozen coils: When airflow is blocked or stopped, moisture will build up on AC coils and freeze into a block of ice. Icing can lead to reduced cooling capacity and permanent damage to the compressor if ignored for too long. Changing air filters regularly will reduce the chance of freezing coils.
- Short cycling: This term refers to an AC unit that starts and stops too frequently. Short cycling is usually caused by a broken thermostat, but it ultimately puts stress on the condenser.
- Water leaks: if you notice pools of water around your AC unit, there’s probably a clog in the drain line. Water leaks can also lead to mold growth.
- Refrigerant leaks: Refrigerant is a chemical coolant that makes air conditioning possible. The level should never be too low. If it is, there’s a leak, or the system was inadequately charged during installation. Only a certified technician can diagnose and repair a refrigerant problem.
- Dirt and debris build-up: A dirty AC can lead to excessive wear and tear on components, dirty air ducts, and eventually compressor failure.