How To Troubleshoot Most Central A/C Problems

by | Jun 20, 2022 | AC Maintenance

Something’s wrong with your central air conditioning.  A strange sound or odor.  Water leaking.  Cool temperature not being maintained.  Perhaps air flow is weak, or you even have warm air blowing out of your vents when you were expecting cool air.  

These are all common complaints we receive at Classic Air Conditioning & Heating.

But, here’s the thing.  While the causes of many air conditioning issues do genuinely need to be assessed and repaired by a certified professional, others are extremely straightforward.  Sometimes, even the least mechanically-minded among us can still troubleshoot – and successfully fix a central air conditioning system with just a few helpful pointers!

So, if your central A/C is languishing, try these quick fixes before you call in the professionals.


Check the Filter

Your air conditioner’s filter is kind of like its lungs.  When the filter reaches a critically dirty level, your air conditioner can no longer “breathe” and circulate enough air.  This can lead to a whole host of problems, including total system failure.  

Remove the filter from your AC unit.  If it’s full of lint or other debris, you’ve probably found the culprit of your problem.  The solution?  Buy a new filter, and then mark the replacement date on your calendar so you can avoid this situation in the future.


Check Your Electrical Panel

If your air conditioner doesn’t turn on, don’t panic – at least not yet.  There is a very real possibility that the unit is just not receiving any power.  

The culprit?  Perhaps your A/C circuit breakers are tripped.  Ensure that the breakers that power your central A/C are flipped to the “ON” position and try again.

If that doesn’t do the trick, then it may be time to panic just a little (a.k.a. call in the experts).


Check for Physical Blockages

Physical blockages can thwart your air conditioner both outdoors and indoors.  

Starting outdoors, check the unit itself for dirt and debris.  You can gently use a hose to spray down dirty exterior hardware.  Also, be sure to remove any larger debris such as leaves, sticks, garbage, or even animal nests.  You never know what you might find during a spring cleaning!

Indoors, be sure to open all vents (even in unused rooms) and ensure the area around them is clear.  Furniture, rugs, and curtains – as well as dirt and dust – can all be factors in poor air conditioner function.


Check Your Thermostat

This is a common one, especially in the spring.  

Before calling in the experts, double-check that no one has inadvertently fiddled with your thermostat settings.  Make sure that the temperature setting is as low as you would like and that the fan is set to “ON” or “AUTO”.  Also, take a peek to be certain that the thermostat is programmed to “COOL,” not “HEAT”.  


About The Author

John Magninat

John Magninat

Owner John Magninat is a third generation air conditioning repair man. Classic Services Air Conditioning & Heating is a family company with family values and our customers are our top priority.

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