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Common AC Issues

Wednesday, July 31, 2019


Air conditioners in Kansas City work hard into September to keep homes comfortable, and they often run into the same common problems. Even though the back-to-school season is almost here, AC systems have several more weeks until they can take a rest. Whenever you experience a breakdown, you can trust A.B. May to give you exceptional home service from start to finish. Below are the five most common problems with air conditioners we see every day.

AC Not Cooling

Sometimes you can hear the AC running, but the house is just not cool enough. A lack of cold air often happens because of low refrigerant and leaks in your refrigerant system. Other signs that you are low on refrigerant are frost on your AC evaporator coils and an extra-long time to cool down the house when the heat hits hard. Your air conditioner uses refrigerant to absorb heat, so low levels can cause the air to blow warmer than usual.

It’s necessary to check your refrigerant levels throughout the year, but late summer is an excellent time to make sure you have enough. Not only is leaked refrigerant harmful to the environment, but it causes your AC to work harder to cool your house. Finally, you may experience high energy bills even though your home isn’t staying cool because your system is compensating for the low refrigerant.

An A.B. May technician can run diagnostic tests to locate any leaks, repair them, and replenish your refrigerant. A high-quality technician won’t merely “top off” your current system without fixing the leak. That way, you know you will have enough coolant to keep your AC running until fall and be ready when summer weather arrives next year, too.

Low Air Flow

If you notice a drop off in your home’s airflow, it could be a sign of a couple of problems. First, you may have blocked air filters due to dust and debris. When air filters get clogged, it slows down airflow and puts stress on your system. The AC may slow down quite a bit or even stop altogether.

Changing air filters is a critical way to keep your system running smoothly. We recommend using high-performance air filters and replacing them at least once every three months. In peak seasons, it can be helpful to change your filters monthly. Fresh filters are especially beneficial for people with allergies or asthma issues, but everyone will benefit from clean air and energy savings from an efficient AC system.

On the other hand, the reduced airflow could be the sign of a more significant problem with your blower motor. If you also hear a rattling sound, your AC fan could be out of alignment. Misaligned fans can bang against their casings, making noise. The bad news is that it will only get worse without attention. Turn off your AC and call a professional technician to repair the issue. Once your blower motor goes out, it can cause your compressor also to break down, and that is a much more expensive repair to face.

In summary, if you notice low airflow in your AC system, change your air filters ASAP. If that doesn’t fix the problem, then set up a service call to diagnose the issue before it grows into a more significant problem.

AC Not Running

When your AC stops working altogether, it can be very stressful because homeowners worry that they have an expensive problem to fix. Sometimes, that is the case, but several straightforward solutions may work when your AC is not running at all.

First, you may have a problem getting power to the unit. Check to make sure the breaker hasn’t tripped. Next, check your thermostat. Thermostats are often accidentally turned off or flipped to heat mode. Also, dirty air filters can block airflow so much that your AC turns itself off to protect the motor. Take a look and change filters coated with dirt. Checking these three potential problems when your AC isn’t working could save you from scheduling a service call at all.

Another common problem that causes your AC to stop working is a failed capacitor. Capacitors are small, inexpensive parts that often breaks down over the course of the summer. Capacitors supply your AC motor enough electricity to power the fans and compressor. When they fail, your AC may struggle to keep up with the power required to keep running. A failed capacitor could slow down performance or completely stop your AC from running. If your AC is not working, give us a call. We aim for exceptional home service from start to finish, and our trained technicians can diagnose the problem and provide you with upfront pricing before beginning the repair.

Leaking Drain Pan or Frozen Coils

Leaking water or ice around your AC are signs your system has a problem. You will often notice a drop in performance or your AC may stop working altogether. First, turn off your air conditioner. It’s essential to take care of the problem before it damages your system any further. If you see frost or ice, it must fully thaw before a technician can repair it.

Water leaking from the drain pan is often a sign of a clogged condensate line. As you AC cools, it removes humidity from the air in your home. That humidity is turned into water and drained away from your AC. If the drain line becomes clogged, the water can back up into your AC and freeze, which can damage your unit. Dirty air filters, damaged ductwork, and blocked return grills can also cause blockages in your drain line. Make sure all vents in your home are opened, even in rarely-used rooms.

Low refrigerant levels can also cause frozen AC coils. If you suspect your air conditioner doesn’t have enough refrigerant, call a skilled technician. They will make sure the leak is found and repaired before adding new refrigerant to your system.

Annual maintenance is vital to keep your AC running smoothly and efficiently. A thorough tune-up removes dirt and debris, checks electrical components, measures refrigerant levels, and ensures each part is working effectively. Often, a qualified technician can spot a potential problem and repair it before it causes an inconvenient breakdown. Even though we are deep into summer, it’s not too late to schedule maintenance. Your AC will thank you!

We are Here for You!

When your air conditioner isn’t keeping you comfortable, turn to the pros at A.B. May. We are here to help — Call 913-251-9456 to schedule service.

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