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10 signs your air conditioner needs repair

Last updated on February 23, 2022

All your electronic devices, including your air conditioning unit, will malfunction or improperly operate at some point during its lifetime.

The unit will not operate like it’s supposed to, and depending on the fault, this mishap can lead to complete damage of the unit after a while. So how do you detect a faulty AC unit, and how do address the problem?

This article will tackle the top ten signs that your air conditioning unit is malfunctioning and how you can spot the problem.

Buy the best air conditioners in Australia online or in-store

Signs your air conditioner needs repair


1. Foul odor from the air conditioner

A foul smell or a strange odor from your air conditioner is a sign of a problem.

Bad smells may indicate a range of problems within the unit, from dirty filters to burned out wires that are slowly melting the plastic covering of the copper.

It is advisable to immediately seek professional assistance to determine the source of the problem and complete the necessary repairs, to avoid any harm to you and your family.

2. Air conditioning unit is noisy

Any humming, clicking, buzzing, banging or rattling sounds while your air conditioner is operating, are clear signs that something is wrong with the unit.

Never disregard strange noises emitted from your air conditioner, as they might signify a signal loss or unbalanced fan blades in your outdoor condenser unit.

A hissing sound, on the other hand, may result from different causes, such as a moderate to severe air duct leak in the house, an overused expansion valve that has been worn out or an air filter that is not compatible with the overall system.

3. Water dripping from the air conditioner

Moisture leaks and water drips from the main unit are also a clear sign of malfunction, which could result from many sources, such as refrigerant leaks.

Refrigerant leaks need to be dealt with in the fastest and most attentive manner, as refrigerants are poisonous, and large concentrations could lead to health damages to you and your family.

Another reason for water drips is a damaged drain pan which happens if your ac unit is old and the condensate becomes damaged or rusted.

In this case, water will not pass through the right channel and will leak through the main unit instead.

4. AC going on and off

If your air conditioner turns on and off in rapid time periods, it is probably experiencing short cycling, which is a common malfunction that affects most households, especially during warmer months.

Short cycling could be due to thermostat problems, dirty air filters, refrigerant leaks, compressor failure, electrical problems, as well as others. It is advisable to seek immediate help to determine the problem and find a solution, as short cycling can lead to a dramatic spike in your electric bill.

5. Air conditioner blows warm air

Warm air coming out of your air conditioner on a hot and humid day can make the entire experience intolerable. The most common cause for this occurrence is low refrigerant levels.

Refrigerant is the fluid that absorbs heat and humidity from the air and is essential to maintain a high level of performance.

If your air conditioner is not cooling, it may be due to refrigerant leaking or a drop in the level of refrigerant.

However, warm air could also be the result of a malfunctioning thermostat or a dirty and clogged air filter that prevents cool air from circulating out of the unit.

6. Restricted or low air flow

One of the most frequent reasons why your AC is blowing warm air is because it is low on refrigerant. Unlike a car’s coolant, this is something you can not fix yourself, but which requires a professional to refill and adjust.

Another reason for restricted or low airflow could be a damaged compressor. The compressor is the main component that operates the air conditioner and cools the air that is circulated back to the main unit, and a damaged compressor will fail to properly cool the air and will lead to a very low airflow from the unit.

7. AC doesn’t start operating

An air conditioner outdoor unit that does not turn on suffers from a malfunction in either the fan or in the condenser.

There are some direct steps you can take to address this problem yourself. You can check the outdoor unit of the air conditioner for any blockage that is preventing the fan from operating, which could be due to dirt, sticks, metal, and others.

Another reason for a failure to start could be due to the thermostat. If the air conditioner and the thermostat do not communicate and are not synchronized with each other, the command from the thermostat will not reach the AC unit, or the AC unit might read a different instruction, and it will not turn on.

8. Air conditioning unit is vibrating or rattling

The root causes of most vibration or rattling issues in air conditioners are mechanical or electrical problems.

Vibration could occur due to a malfunctioning compressor, a motor fan blade that is out of balance, or garbage like sticks, leaves, or gravel that have gotten stuck in your outdoor air conditioner unit.

You should seek professional assistance to determine the cause and properly address the issue.

9. Need for regular repairs

If you are constantly repairing your air conditioner and making frequent calls for service teams to check errors and address them, it is advisable to upgrade your AC unit.

It will save up your money on future repairs, and will relieve you from the hassle of constant repairs beyond standard maintenance procedures.

10. Overheating air conditioners

Overheated outdoor air conditioner units are usually an indication of an excessive effort by the outdoor unit to pump air through, which can happen if the air filter is overloaded.

This can be addressed by contacting a professional service company to inspect and fix the problem, or you can manually clean or replace the air conditioner filter to improve the pressure.

Summing up

Overall, proper care and maintenance are essential to ensure that your air conditioning unit operates properly without faults.

Make sure to regularly clean and service the air conditioning unit, in order to make it last as long as possible.

Buy the best air conditioners in Australia online or in-store

Gaurav Sharma

At E-Green Electrical , Gaurav writes about Electrical energy, Solar energy, Energy conservation and electrical product reviews. He is most interested in how we can utilize technology and renewable resources to reduce energy consumption , prevent pollution and save money at the same time.

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