Air Conditioner Repairs You Can Make Yourself

« Back to Home

Why Is Your AC Struggling To Keep Temperatures Low?

Posted on

Is your AC unit struggling to keep your home cool? Read on to learn what could be causing this issue and how to fix it.

Low refrigerant

Refrigerant fluid is the coolant in the AC unit that circulates and absorbs heat, keeping temperatures ideal. If there are leaks in the refrigerant line, the AC will have to run on low levels of the coolant, leading to higher indoor temperatures. Leaking refrigerant also messes with the pressure needed for the proper operation of the compressor, leading to the unit shutting off before it achieves the set temperature.

The most common sign of leaking refrigerant is ice on the outdoor unit. This results from low pressure in the evaporator coil that leads to low temperatures in the refrigerant lines, causing the surrounding air moisture to freeze over the condenser. Other signs of low refrigerant in the unit include lukewarm/warm air coming out of the supply vents and a hissing noise in the refrigerant lines.

A unit that is running on a low refrigerant charge will not only fail spectacularly at keeping your house cool, but it will also force the condenser to work extra hard, leading to serious system damage and possible failure. If you notice any of the signs above, call in an AC repair specialist to seal any leaky refrigerant lines and boost the refrigerant charge in the unit.

Dirty air filters

Air filters in the supply vents remove pollen, dust and other debris in the conditioned air before it is released into your indoor space. With time, these filters can get clogged with dirt particles, restricting their ability to let air pass through them. Restricted airflow can lead to a host of problems, including insufficient cooling and an AC that turns on and off in short bursts.

Dirty filters can also contaminate the air you breathe and lead to possible damage to your AC unit. Cleaning or changing your air filters on a regular basis can help avert bigger, more expensive problems and maintain a healthy home environment.

Poor thermostat placement

Placing the thermostat near a drafty window or door often leads to false readings that trigger the AC unit to shut down before the entire home is cooled sufficiently. A thermostat that is located close to an air supply vent will likely also affect AC performance, as it will be hit by cool air before other areas and trigger a halt to the cooling process.

For optimal AC performance, consider placing the thermostat in the center of your living room, away from direct sunlight or drafts.