Your Air Conditioner Just Broke | 3 Things to Immediately Do
The summer heat wouldn’t be bearable without an air conditioner to keep your home cool. What happens, though, when the air conditioner that you depend on suddenly stops working? While you’ll likely need to adapt many parts of your normal routine to accommodate a lack of air conditioning, there are at least three things that you need to do immediately after your air conditioner stops producing cold air.
Double-Check Your Thermostat
To avoid discomfort and embarrassment, the first thing you should do if your air conditioner stops working is to check your thermostat. If your thermostat is powered by a battery, your problems could be caused by a dead battery. Make sure that the thermostat is getting power and that it’s set to the correct settings to tell your air conditioner to operate.
Check Refrigerant Lines
Another quick step you can take immediately after your air conditioner goes out is to check the refrigerant lines. If you notice frost on the refrigerant line, either outside where it leaves the compressor, or inside in the evaporator coil, it’s likely that the refrigerant line is frozen. This means that the system has over-cooled the refrigerant to the point that it can no longer flow through the refrigerant line. This prevents the system from removing heat and humidity from your home’s indoor air. In some cases, your refrigerant line can freeze if the air filter is dirty, so it’s a good idea to check the air filter, as well.
Call for Help
If your system passes both of these simple checks, there’s a good chance that your system has a more serious problem that a professional air conditioning service will need to address. Set your thermostat to “off” to avoid causing any further damage, and then give your local HVAC contractor a call. Since air conditioners are highly complex and use significant amounts of energy, it can be very dangerous to try and work on your air conditioner yourself. Letting a professional handle the job will ensure satisfactory results without property damage or personal injury.
Prepare for the Long Haul
Some air conditioner problems are simple and quick to fix, while others may require full system replacement. Any time your air conditioner goes out, make sure to prepare for the worst and assume that you won’t have cool air for at least several hours. Find any portable fans that you have stored away so that you’ll have something to keep you cool while you sleep. Make sure to keep all of your exterior doors and windows closed unless absolutely necessary to preserve the cool air for as long as possible. Finally, consider taking the time while you wait to run errands at establishments that have working air conditioning. While it’s inconvenient, you can make the best of a bad situation if you plan ahead.
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