How To Troubleshoot Your AC Before Calling For Repair

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It is no surprise that many Las Vegas AC repair technicians receive calls about an air conditioner that won’t turn on. In some cases, the first thing a technician will do is go to check the electrical wires and make sure they are all connected.

This is a quick fix that will help ensure your AC is running properly. Next, check to see that the thermostat is set on Cool.

Check the Thermostat

The thermostat is kind of like the brains of your HVAC system. If it starts acting weird, your whole system can go haywire. Sometimes problems with the thermostat are as simple as a bad battery or an improperly set temperature.

If the batteries in your thermostat are dead, replacing them can give it a much-needed jumpstart. If that doesn’t fix the issue, it might be time to replace them altogether.

Another thing that can prevent the thermostat from communicating with the air conditioning system is a dirty sensor. Dust, dirt, and lint can get into the sensors and cause them to stop working properly. To clean the sensor, simply remove the cover and wipe it down with a damp cloth.

Also make sure that the switches to the outdoor unit and indoor air handler haven’t been flipped off by someone accidentally. This could disable the unit and prevent it from running at all. If this is the case, it might be necessary to call in a professional to replace the thermostat.

Check the Circuit Breaker

If your breaker keeps tripping, it may be because the air conditioner needs to draw more amps than it can handle. This can overheat wires and cause a fire. Breakers are designed to protect you from this by severing the connection that keeps electricity flowing until it’s safe to continue.

You can test your breaker’s functionality by going to your electrical panel and locating the breaker that keeps tripping. It’s easy to identify which one by observing the switch—a tripped breaker will have its switch between the “On” and “Off” positions. Breakers that have not tripped will have their switches firmly set in the “On” position.

Use a multimeter set to read AC volts by touching one prong of the multimeter to the breaker’s terminal screw and the other prong to the ground screw (which is usually in a bar along the right side of the panel). This will give you an idea of whether your breaker is functioning properly.

Check the Condenser

The fan motor in your AC unit’s condenser powers the blades that cool the refrigerant from a hot gas back to a cool liquid. This liquid is then blown across pipes and into your home via air ducts. If the fan motor isn’t working or there are signs of physical damage, you may need to call a repair person.

If your AC isn’t cooling or the thermostat keeps cycling on and off, there are a few simple things you can check before calling for a service call. First, make sure your system is actually plugged in. Then, look at your breaker box (or fuse box for older homes) to see whether the AC circuit breaker is in the ON position. If it isn’t, flip it to the ON position and try running your AC again. This is also a good time to re-check the air filter and clear out any leaves, twigs or grass that have blown into the condenser unit.

Check the Furnace

Some thermostats are wired into your home’s electrical system, while others run on batteries. If yours runs on batteries, replace the batteries and check that the date and time are correct (if it’s a programmable thermostat) or that the temperature settings are where you want them (again, if you’ve programmed a schedule).

If your breaker box has one switch that looks like a light switch, make sure the switch is in the ON position. It can be easy to accidentally move it off during cleaning, or a faulty switch can cause it to trip.

If you’ve done everything in this article and still can’t get your AC to come on, it may be time to call a professional. However, it’s always worth trying a few simple things yourself before spending the money to have a professional come out. Then you can rest assured knowing you didn’t waste your hard-earned money on an unnecessary repair. Good luck!

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