How to Troubleshoot Air Conditioner Problems That Commonly Arise

June 2, 2015

When the temperature starts to soar this summer, you can't afford to deal with a malfunctioning A/C. Follow this air conditioner troubleshooting guide to get the unit back up and running in no time. Condenser Won't Turn On
  • Check your thermostat settings. Make sure it's set to "cool," and the fan is set "auto." Lower the temperature five degrees and see if the A/C cycles on.
  • Make sure the outdoor unit is plugged in.
  • Check the breaker box for a tripped breaker. Restore power and try again.
A/C Runs but Doesn't Cool Enough
  • Vacuum return and supply registers to promote proper airflow.
  • Change the air filter if it appears dirty.
  • Check the outdoor condenser for airflow obstructions. Hose down the unit and trim back vegetation to at least two feet away.
  • Remove buildup from the evaporator coil by vacuuming it with the brush attachment. Let the air conditioner run for a couple of hours and see if your house cools off.
Unit Short Cycles
  • Thoroughly clean the outdoor unit and evaporator coil.
  • Remove any obstructions blocking airflow from return and supply registers.
  • Unless your unit is oversized, these air conditioner troubleshooting tips should solve the problem.
Water Pools Around the Unit
  • Pour water into the condensate pan to check for blockages in the condensate drain. If the water backs up, pass a stiff wire through the drain to remove the obstruction.
  • Pour a water/bleach solution down the condensate drain every few months to proactively prevent blockages.
There's only so much air conditioner troubleshooting you can perform without any professional tools or know-how. If you attempt these fixes to no avail, it's time to call in the pros. A technician with proper training, certification and years of experience can fix a faulty motor or recharge the refrigerant, make thermostat adjustments and perform other repairs to get your air conditioner up and running again. To work with a reputable company for your air conditioner repair needs, please contact Lozier Heating & Cooling. We proudly serve residents of the Des Moines area and have a 98 percent customer approval rating. Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Des Moines, Iowa area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: "Nenov Brothers Images/Shutterstock"