Summer is just about the worst time for your air conditioner to start developing issues. It’s also one of the most common times for problems of various kinds to crop up. Preventive maintenance is a great way to keep issues from developing in your air conditioner during the summer, but it’s not a perfect solution. Nothing is, unfortunately. Between maintenance appointments, you’re still going to need to keep an eye out for warning signs that your system needs repairs. One common sign that your air conditioner isn’t functioning properly is if it’s not putting out as much cool air as it should be. The following are a few of the more common causes of low air conditioner output.
Clogged Air Filter
The air filter is a fiber mesh that sits in the air conditioner, and protects it from the dust and other debris commonly found in ductwork. Most homeowners aren’t even aware that they have an air filter in their air conditioning systems, which isn’t good since the filter needs to be changed every three months or so while the system is being used heavily. If you don’t change your filter every three months during the summer, it will eventually clog.
Clogged air filters prevent the air conditioner from cooling the home properly, since there is less air flowing into the system and therefore less air for the system to blow through the ducts. Moreover, it can lead to problems like the evaporator coil icing over, further crippling the air conditioner. If your system isn’t blowing as much air as it normally does, it might be because the air filter is clogged and needs changing.
If you notice fluid dripping from your air conditioner around the same time as it starts losing output, you may have a refrigerant leak. The system relies on refrigerant to cool the home, evaporating and condensing it to move heat out of the house. As the refrigerant level falls due to the leak, the system’s output capacity will fall as well. You need to make sure that you call for repairs if you suspect this is happening, as the air conditioner will eventually break down if the leak is not found and patched.
Short cycling is when the air conditioner turns on and off every few minutes, instead of going through an entire cooling cycle. It prevents the system from cooling the home as well as it should be, but it also increases the amount of wear and tear the system suffers. An air conditioner that is short cycling will be more prone to developing other problems, and will likely have to be replaced years sooner than it otherwise would have. Have a professional check out the system as soon as you notice that it’s short cycling.
Southwest Heating and Cooling offers comprehensive HVAC services in Littleton, CO. No matter what kind of air conditioning services you need, we can help you out. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our professionals.