The citizens of Sarasota are no strangers to hot and humid Florida summers. However, days and nights of sweltering heat can be both uncomfortable and dangerous for your family. So what should you do when your air conditioner suddenly isn’t working?
What Can I Do?
A malfunctioning air conditioner is a safety hazard. Turning off your air conditioner immediately is the safest action that you need to take when it’s malfunctioning. This will protect your family and prevent your air conditioning unit from sustaining further damage. At this point, you need to evaluate if the situation requires an emergency AC repair.
Here are three common signs of an air conditioning problem and a few of their most common causes:
- Thermostat – The first thing to do when your air conditioning unit is blowing warm air or is producing insufficient air flow is to check your thermostat settings. It’s an easy fix to switch your thermostat setting to “cool” instead of “heat.” Also, make sure that the thermostat is set to “auto.” The “auto” setting will utilize the fan only when the air is being cooled or heated. Alternatively, the “on” setting will have the fan circulate air regardless of the heater or air conditioner being on.
- Refrigerant – Low refrigerant is a common cause of a malfunctioning air conditioner. Unfortunately, refrigerant is toxic, which means a qualified service professional should be the one to replace the lost filament and fix any leaks.
- Evaporator coil – A frozen evaporator coil will block cool air from entering your house. Condensation naturally builds up on coils and normally evaporates. However, when hot and desperate homeowners blast their air conditioners, the condensation freezes once the temperature inside the unit drops below 32F. The easy fix to this scenario is turning your air conditioning unit off for a little while and letting the coil thaw out.
- Air filter – Air flow is restricted when your filter hasn’t been cleaned or replaced in a long time. The purpose of the air filter is to protect your air conditioning unit from dirt and debris. When an air filter becomes clogged, you or a technician can clean or replace it.
- Circuit breaker – Your air conditioner requires power, which places a load on your circuit breaker. Sometimes, when a circuit breaker gets overloaded, it will switch off as a safety precaution. Locate the breaker and flip it back to the “on” position to see if it fixes your air flow problem.
- Mold & mildew – This is a common smell caused by excess water not properly draining in the A/C system, causing mold to grow. You may need to call a Sarasota repair specialist to clean your air conditioner, but try changing your air filter first!
- Sulfur/rot – This smell of decomposition can be a little alarming, but is likely caused by a deceased animal in your air ducts. We recommend having an expert help you with a duct cleaning!
- Burning – A burning rubber smell could mean that your air conditioner’s wires have burnt through their insulation, or you have overloaded your system’s circuitry, usually caused by drawing too much electrical current. This could lead to a house fire. Turn your air conditioner off and call a service professional immediately.
- Squeaking – A squeaking sound typically means that you have a maintenance issue. It could be that the blower belt is failing, or that parts need to be oiled. This is not immediately dangerous, and can be prevented with proper maintenance.
- Rattling and banging – This sound means that a system component may be loose or out of alignment, and it’s best to repair it before the part completely breaks. It may not be an emergency, but it’s best to repair it before the part completely breaks.
- Blade thwapping – This usually means something is caught in the blower blades. If you can remove it on your own, try to do so before turning your system on again.
Please contact Airiffic Air Conditioning and Heating at (941) 371-3355 if your concern isn’t listed.
How Can I Prevent an Emergency?
We always recommend scheduling regular maintenance appointments to guarantee that your unit is running efficiently. Routine maintenance appointments are important because they prolong the life of your air conditioning unit and ultimately save you money. A technician can easily identify and fix small, affordable issues before they become costlier problems. Not only can maintenance appointments prevent sudden and costly breakdowns, they also ensure the lasting condition of your air conditioning unit, which can save you money by being more energy efficient.
You can always contact Airrific Air Conditioning and Heating to help you in an emergency. We offer emergency AC services at no extra charge, as well as free service calls and estimates.