What To Check When Your Air Conditioner Won’t Turn On

image of an air conditioner condenser

The air conditioner keeps your home cool and comfortable when temperatures soar during summer. Some homeowners may find, at some point or another, that their AC unit won’t turn on, leaving them with a hot and humid house while they wait for an HVAC contractor to arrive. However, there are many instances where the air conditioner won’t turn on because of a simple reason that the homeowner could very well fix on their own. By checking the items listed below, you can prevent dealing with an uncomfortable home in the peak of the summer heat.

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What To Check When Your Air Conditioner Won’t Turn On

In this article, we discuss some air conditioner troubleshooting tips should you find that your air conditioner won’t run as expected.

1. Air Conditioner Power Source

circuit breaker

When the heat arrives and the air conditioner fails to turn on, you can become anxious and may not think clearly. In these scenarios, you may overlook fundamental factors that may cause the issue.

  • First of all, check the circuit breaker to determine if a problem with the electricity is the cause. Locate your main electrical panel to see if the circuit breaker tripped. Turn it back on if it is in the off position.
  • Check if the electrical plug is in place and connected to a power source. It may sound pretty obvious but this is often neglected. In some instances, the plug is just loose.
  • Inspect the thermostat, as well. There are many scenarios when people think their AC unit is not working. However, the real problem may be the thermostat. Investigate if the thermostat is plugged into a power source and is in the correct mode.

Although these are basic tips, people usually overlook them because of their simplicity. Unconnected electrical plugs, loose plugs, and tripped circuit breakers are usual culprits.

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2. Be Familiar with Your AC Unit & Its Switches

Familiarize yourself with your AC unit. You can troubleshoot common air conditioning problems as long as you understand the HVAC system. The key to prolonging the life of your HVAC system is knowing how to practice effective maintenance. Learn the basic parts of the system as well. For example, a lot of homeowners are not familiar with the on and off switches. Sometimes, the inside unit’s power switch in the air handler is in the off position. Turn it back on. There is also an emergency shut-off switch located just next to the outside unit. Someone may have accidentally turned the switch off and forgot to turn it on.

3. Check Your HVAC Air Filter

image of an air conditioner filter replacement

The AC filters need regular replacement every 60-90 days. Some homes may require a more frequent air filter replacement, depending on the home’s location, pets, and more. This task is essential to maintaining the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Filters are essential in preventing dust and debris from getting into the system and causing more problems. The more the filters stay on, the more they get clogged and cause issues.

Once the filters get clogged, the AC needs to consume more power to maintain the right temperature inside your home. It can spike your energy bills if you do not address the issue right away. Worst, it can cause the air conditioner to stop working.

Keep tabs on when you replaced your filter last. Some homeowners write the date on the filter and set a calendar reminder to check its condition at the beginning of the month. Replacing your filters before they get clogged can extend the lifespan of the system.

You do not want your AC system to consume more energy than necessary. Over time, forcing your system to use excessive power can cause a permanent breakdown. Remember that replacing the entire AC system is more costly. Do not neglect the regular replacement of the HVAC filters.

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4. Check The Drain Pan & Lines

When you consult an HVAC contractor, make sure to ask how you can check the AC drain pan as well. When it is full, it triggers a float switch that keeps the unit from turning on.

As your air conditioner starts to function, it creates a condensation that gets out of your home through a drain line. This line can get clogged and trigger the system to turn off.

Emptying the drain pan and unclogging the drain line usually solves the issue. However, you will need to call a technician if you have difficulties with a blocked drain line.

5. Check Your Evaporator Coils

dirt on air conditioner coils

The evaporator coils need to be clean at all times. This HVAC maintenance task is also essential to the lifespan of your system.

Cleaning the evaporator coils is as crucial as changing your filters regularly. Doing this task decreases the risk of damage to the unit. If your AC unit is not turning on, there might be a chance that the evaporator coils are dirty. Recall the last time you had them cleaned. Remember that you should clean them at least once a year for maintenance.

Make sure to consult an AC repair company to learn how to clean the coils properly. You should also call for an air conditioner tune-up at least once a year. You do not want to have air conditioner issues during the peak of summer. Hence, it is crucial to have your unit serviced, maintained, and cleaned regularly by a licensed technician.

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Last Words

If your air conditioner does not turn on, the culprit can be a simple electrical issue. The circuit breaker is off, the unit is not connected to a power source, or the plug is loose. You can fix these things. You can also fix the dilemma when the culprit is a full drain pan or a clogged drain line. Just empty the pan and remove the blockage from the lines. However, you need to call a professional technician when the issue is more than basic. Also, make sure to get HVAC maintenance at least once a year.

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Our company guarantees affordable heating and cooling service rates. Our maintenance services can increase your home’s comfort, energy efficiency, and cost-effectiveness. We can also provide you with a highly energy-efficient HVAC replacement system that fits your budget. Your satisfaction is important to us, so all our work comes with a guarantee. Book a service appointment with McAllister Energy today. We provide free, in-home estimates.

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