Top 4 Causes of Residential Air Conditioning Problems

During the summer, most homes use an air conditioner system to maintain cooler indoor temperatures. From small window units to large central air conditioning systems, all types of AC systems experience occasional malfunctions or mechanical issues that prevent cool air from circulating. The following are the most common causes of AC problems for residential air conditioner units.

1. Low Refrigerant

When the AC system stops producing cooler air or takes longer to cool the house, the most likely cause is low refrigerant. The refrigerant is a substance that is used to absorb heat from the warm air in the house. When this refrigerant is low, the AC system is less effective at cooling the indoor air.

The most common cause of low refrigerant in an air conditioning Oshawa system is a refrigerant leak. These leaks often occur in the evaporator or condenser coil that carries the refrigerant. However, leaks can also occur anywhere along the path that the refrigerant travels, including the various copper tubes, seals, and valves inside the AC system.

With a small leak, an AC repair technician may simply refill the lost refrigerant. However, a serious leak requires repair to prevent the need to continually add more refrigerant. This may involve the replacement of a damaged coil, which can cost almost as much as the AC system.

2. Dirty Condenser Coils

A lack of cool air may also be caused by a dirty condenser coil. Central AC systems typically have a condenser unit located outside of the property. This unit stores the condenser coil, which is where heat is expelled from the refrigerant before it is sent back to the evaporator coil.

If the condenser coil is dirty, the air conditioner will have difficulty expelling the collected heat. This limits the efficiency of the AC system, requiring the system to work harder to cool the home.

Homeowners should maintain the area around the condenser unit by removing dirt and debris. Keeping plants trimmed away from the condenser unit also helps to keep the condenser coils clean.

3. The Fans Stopped Working

Most AC systems include two fans. One fan is used to draw warm air into the AC system and over the evaporator coils where the warmth is absorbed. Another fan is used to cool the condenser coils and help expel the warmth absorbed by the refrigerant.

If either fan stops working, the AC unit can no longer perform its job. When the indoor fan stops working, the AC system cannot cool the indoor air. When the outdoor fan stops working, the AC system cannot get rid of the heat. In either case, the most common repair is the replacement of the fans or the motors that control the fans.

4. Clogged Drain Lines

Air conditioners help to remove moisture from the air as the air is cooled. This excess moisture then needs to be drained. Most AC systems use a drain line that allows the liquid to drain outdoors or into a pan. If the drain line gets clogged, water can back up into the system and cause damage.

These are the four most common causes of AC problems with residential air conditioners. However, when an AC system stops working properly, homeowners should always hire a professional HVAC technician to inspect and repair their system instead of attempting the repairs on their own.

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