No one wants to deal with an emergency aircon repair – especially when it’s hot, humid, and generally unpleasant outside! Here’s how to tell if your aircon system needs expert attention before it gives up the ghost.
Aircons are one of those things that we count on to ‘just work’. Like boilers, refrigerators, and our other mod cons, we expect it to do its job year after year, with no prodding from us. But inevitably, the day comes when the fridge breaks, the boiler cools, and the air conditioner blows hot air. We can avoid many of these unpleasant surprises with regular maintenance. And, if we know the warning signs of a malfunctioning aircon unit, we can get it repaired before it completely fails.
In this article, we’ll look at common signs of a malfunctioning air conditioner and what might cause them. If you notice any of these symptoms, call a professional repair service – you might save yourself a more costly aircon repair or replacement!
Aircon Warning Signs
One or more of these occurrences could mean all is not well with your trusty air conditioner:
It’s Blowing Warm Air
This is an easy one to spot. Even if you’re not near a vent, you’ll notice if the room doesn’t cool off as expected. What could be the problem? Anything from needing to recharge the coolant to clogged air filters to worn out internal components. Best get it checked out by a professional.
It’s Not Producing Much Airflow
Maybe you can feel cool air coming out, but not too much of it. It’s more like a weak whisper than a refreshing breeze. In this case, your aircon unit might need to be cleaned or its filters might need to be replaced. It could also mean there’s leaky or clogged ductwork somewhere along the line.
It’s Making Unusual Noises
You’re familiar with the normal sounds of your aircon system, whether it’s a split system, a window unit, or a portable indoor unit. If you start to hear anything new – especially if it’s a scraping, banging, clanking, clicking, squeaking, or squealing – call a repair service. (And if you’ve ever lived with a loud, squealing aircon, you’ll know it won’t take long for you to notice it and make the call!)
What’s at fault? That depends on the type of noise. A banging/clanking/clanging noise can indicate a loose or broken part or some compressor problems. Squeaking and squealing can signal fan issues. Even if it’s the usual noise at a much louder decibel level, it’s worth getting it checked out. It’s very unlikely that the noise will go away on its own, and leaving it can make the problem worse.
The Unit Turns On and Off, On and Off …
If you notice that your aircon turns on, runs a short time, and turns off again – only to repeat the whole performance a bit later – it’s time to make an investigation. This is called short cycling, and it means the aircon unit is not operating correctly or efficiently. There are numerous causes of short cycling; fixing them can be as simple as replacing a part or as complex as getting a whole new system. This is another problem you don’t want to let run on, as it will drive up your energy usage (and also keep your indoor areas uncomfortably warm).
There Are Leaks Near or Around the Aircon Unit
It’s normal for window and portable aircons to produce a steady drip of water as they run, but you shouldn’t see water or condensation droplets on the outdoor unit of a split system or anywhere within your home. You absolutely shouldn’t see pools of water around your unit or in your home. If you do, there could be a clog, a leak, or another problem with your system.
Regardless of the type of aircon unit you use – window, portable, split, etc. – call an air conditioning professional immediately if you suspect a coolant leakage from the unit. Aircon coolant is quite dangerous and can be very hazardous to pets, humans, and the environment.
Any unpleasant smell coming from your aircon is cause for concern. It could be down to standing water in the unit, microbial growth (or both), a problem with how the unit drains, or a few other causes; the fix could be anywhere from some routine maintenance or a major repair job – another cause for expert evaluation. Again, this is something you don’t want to put off; it could result in health problems, especially if you have asthma or allergies.
It’s Humid Inside
Air conditioners condition the air by cooling it and removing some of its moisture, thus also lowering the humidity in the room or building. If there’s a lot of humidity inside, it’s a sign that the aircon isn’t doing its job. You’ll probably notice insufficient cooling as well; it’s just a general sign that something is off and needs to be checked out.
Your Utility Bills Skyrocket
While using aircon will make you energy bills increase, pay attention if you see an unusual or sharp rise in utility usage. This might indicate that your air conditioner isn’t functioning efficiently, even if it’s keeping your home cool. It’s time to schedule some regular maintenance and ensure everything is in working order.
Need Help Figuring Out Aircon Problems?
If your aircon is sending out any of these distress signals, give Just Aircons a call at 0207 32 32 999. Our experienced repair service will thoroughly inspect your air conditioning system and investigate any issues. But we recommend that you opt for regular aircon maintenance instead of waiting for a problem to arise – it’s a lot more cost-effective!