While we’re all ready to pack away our jackets and heavy blankets to enjoy the summer weather, it’s important to ensure your air conditioner is as ready for summer as you are. To do that, you first have to be able to recognize the red flags your AC sends to let you know it’s ready for a tune-up.
Don’t spend your summer secretly asking yourself, “Is my AC broken?” If you see, hear, feel, or smell any of the following red flags, then you should get your air conditioner repaired so it doesn’t stop working in the middle of the summer heat.
Warning Signs Your AC Is Broken
Sign 1: Inefficient Cooling
One of the easiest ways to know if your AC is broken is to check the temperature of the airflow coming through your vents. If you feel warm instead of cool air, double check your thermostat to be sure it’s on the cooling mode and set to an appropriately cool temperature.
If everything looks right but your vents are blowing warm air anyway, then you know your AC is broken. There could be an issue with restricted airflow or your compressor may be failing. Don’t attempt a quick DIY fix for an issue like this. Properly resolving this issue could require careful calibration and you might end up causing more harm than good. Call in an expert you can trust to get your AC unit blowing cold air again.
Sign 2: Frequent Cycles
It’s perfectly normal for your AC unit to run regular cooling cycles throughout the day, and while you should expect those cycles to be more frequent on the hottest days of summer, it should never turn on and shut off constantly. The frequency of cycles is a great way how to tell if your AC is broken.
If your unit turns off and on annoyingly regularly, or the cycles seem far more frequent then necessary, reach out to John C. Flood for advice on how to proceed. Your AC unit could simply need a quick tune-up to solve the issue, but depending on the severity of cycles, the situation might be more severe.
Sign 3: Strange Sounds
All air conditioners make noise when they turn on, when they run, and when their cycle ends and they shut off, so how are you to know if your AC is broken? Simple: pay attention to the kinds of sound coming from your unit. You can tell if your AC is broken if it’s making loud, grinding, buzzing, or otherwise unusual sounds.
If you notice any unusual sounds coming from your AC unit, especially rattling or buzzing sounds, it could be a sign of a loose part or a more serious integral issue. Unfortunately, things like these don’t go away on their own. Call in a repairman you trust to fix the issue before it causes additional damage.
Sign 4: Poor Airflow
Poor airflow typically means something is blocking the air from moving through the ductwork as it should. This could be something as simple as a clogged air filter, or it could be more serious, like a broken motor or a severely broken unit. So while poor airflow isn’t a clear way to tell if your AC is broken, it’s a sign that something needs adjusting.
If you notice the air coming through your vents is cool but too light to properly cool your home, schedule a cooling inspection right away. An HVAC technician will be able to identify your problem, help you solve it as efficiently as possible, and make sure your unit is running right.
Sign 5: Unusual or Bad Odors
Homes can have a variety of odors for a variety of reasons, but one way you can tell if your AC is broken is if you notice the unpleasant smells are coming directly from your vents and not your plumbing or kitchen trash can.
Try to identify the smell—is it overheating, or does it smell like rotten eggs? Do you smell gas or oil, or does it smell musty like mold?
The type of smell determines the best course of action you should take to address the issue, which could be as simple as cleaning away the dust and mold from your AC unit’s draining pan, changing a filter, or tightening a loose oil fitting. But it could also be as complicated as cleaning out your air ducts or needing a full AC unit replacement.
Sign 6: Leaks
Air conditioners use refrigerant to cool the air in your home in a process that produces condensation. While there is going to be some water around your unit, there should never be an accumulation of liquid large enough to cause leaks in your home. If this is ever the case with your unit, that’s a clear sign that your AC unit isn’t working properly and needs a repair.
Don’t wait around wondering what’s wrong with your AC unit or asking yourself, “Is my AC unit broken?” Have an expert check your unit as soon as you can to prevent serious damage to your home.
Let the Experts Handle Your HVAC Repairs
With more than 115 years of expertise, the John C. Flood team has seen it all. If you suspect that your AC is broken, contact our team right away and don’t let the issue sit to collect more damage. If you go all the recommended repairs, we’ll even waive the diagnostic fee! Call (703) 752-1266 or contact us online now.
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