Here are five telltale signs that your home’s air conditioning unit isn’t working as well as it should be.
1. Strange Sounds
If your air conditioning unit starts making any unusual sounds, like squealing, grinding, grating or clunking, it’s time to call a qualified technician. Strange noises suggest there’s a serious problem that needs to be addressed. Don’t wait for your unit to stop working on it’s own. Turn it off immediately and call for service.
2. Strange Odours
Foul smells from air conditioners can be caused by many different reasons. A smoky or burnt smell, for example, could mean your unit has a wiring malfunction. A musty smell may indicate your unit has mold that needs to be cleaned out. And a really foul odour might be coming from an animal that became trapped and died in the unit.
Of course, the smell could also simply be the result of a dirty filter that needs replacement. So try putting in a new filter first. If the strange odour persists, call a service person as soon as possible.
3. Temperature Variations
Another obvious sign of needed air conditioning repair is when one room seems to be much cooler than another or when the rooms are not getting anywhere as cool as you expect them to be.
Variations in temperature are sometimes caused by a failing compressor. If that’s the case, you want to have it looked at right way. However temperature variations can also be the result of a faulty thermostat. Either way, you need to contact a qualified professional air conditioning repair technician.
4. Leaks and Water Damage
Always pay attention to any leaks around or near your air conditioning unit. Water pools usually indicate a broken or clogged drain tube, which is an easy fix for a professional and should be done immediately.
However, if you discover frost or ice accumulating on the coils, you probably have refrigerant leaking out of your unit. That is a more complex repair, but again is easily handled by a professional.
5. Higher Than Average Utility Bills
Keep an eye on your energy bill and take note if it is considerably higher than usual during the hot summer months. If you haven’t had a recent rate increase and are experiencing normal summer temperatures outside, a much higher energy bill could mean you’re having a problem with your air conditioner’s performance. A professional technician can help make sure your unit is working at full capacity.
The Importance of Annual Checkups
Some air conditioning maintenance, such as changing filters on a regular basis, is a simple do-it-yourself project. But most air conditioning repair demands the expertise of a trained HVAC professional.
The best way for homeowners to keep their residential air conditioning energy and repair costs under control is to have an annual inspection done once a year.
An annual checkup won’t prevent a breakdown, but it will often catch problems before they get too serious and too costly. Regular service by an air conditioning professional can help boost your unit’s efficiency and reduce your energy costs over time.