Tips For Troubleshooting Four Residential Air Conditioner Issues

You depend on your air conditioning all summer long to keep your home cool, which is why it can be devastating to your comfort when it stops working. Thankfully, there are some problems that you can troubleshoot on your own and potentially save you a service call from a local HVAC technician. Look into these problems when your air conditioner stops working properly.

Insufficient Cooling

A common problem homeowners run into is insufficient cooling. Your air conditioner may not be getting the air cold enough to keep your home at a comfortable temperature, or there may be airflow restrictions that are causing problems. 

Start by looking at the air filter to see if it is clogged, since this is a problem that is easy and inexpensive to fix. You can also look at the a-coil in the air handler to see if it is frozen. This may be an indication that you have a refrigerant leak and the air conditioner is unable to absorb the heat that is in the air or a dirty coil that needs to be cleaned.

Odd Noises

Have you heard a rattling or squealing sound coming from your air conditioner? This could be due to components becoming loose within the unit that need to be fixed. See if you can pinpoint where the noise is coming from so that you can fix it on your own. For example, you may have a belt driving the fan that is worn out and needs to be replaced or loose screws that need to be tightened.

Poor Airflow

Not getting the proper amount of airflow to certain rooms of your home? You may have ductwork that is damaged and causing air to leak out before it reaches the vent. Take a look at the ductwork that is exposed and try to identify places where air is leaking out. You may need to use aluminum tape to seal parts of the ductwork where air is leaking out, which can help improve airflow to the rooms in your home. 


Short-cycling is a problem where your air conditioner turns on for a short amount of time before turning off again. This is a problem that often happens because of a variety of issues, but there are a few that you can troubleshoot on your own. Take a look at the outdoor compressor and see if it is dirty. If the ventilation around the air conditioner is clogged with debris, the compressor may be overheating and shutting down. Try cleaning out the fins of the compressor to see if it prevents short-cycling. 

Talk to a local technician about air conditioning services.