The COVID-19 crisis has forced many people to stay indoors to avoid infection. Staying at home is a powerful deterrent to catching or spreading the illness. However, if your air conditioner is malfunctioning, and your indoor air quality is poor because of this, you’re at risk for other health issues. Here are some common HVAC problems that can compromise your air conditioner’s efficiency and taint your home’s air quality.
Air conditioning problems are extremely urgent during stay-at-home circumstances. Here are four of the most common air conditioner malfunctions that make the situation even more unpleasant.
1. Burnt Capacitors
Is a capacitor (the component that jolts a motor to start or keep going) trying to tell you something in its own cryptic language? A clicking sound may indicate that it’s wearing down, and a humming sound may signify that a motor is struggling to engage. Capacitors have direct contact with the motor, so if they’re allowed to degrade, it could result in motor failure.
2. The Unit Shuts off and On Repeatedly
Known as short cycling, the rapid on-and-off of an air conditioning system causes the cooling cycle to cut short and then quickly kick on again. Since the cooling cycle is so short, the unit can’t adequately chill your living space. Cycling can happen as briefly as every five minutes or less. The unit devours more power when short cycling, in order to start over and over and over, rather than smoothly running for a normal length of time.
3. Dirty Condenser Coils
Located in the outdoor part of your air conditioner, condenser coils transfer hot air from inside the house to the outside. If the coils are clogged with leaves, dirt, grass, or other obstructions, the unit becomes overburdened and must work harder than usual to compensate.
The stress this places on your system may cause a premature breakdown. The air conditioner’s cooling efficiency may plummet as much as 30 percent when these coils stop functioning.
4. Your Air Conditioner Is Dripping Water
When your air conditioner is running properly, the moisture it creates flows into a pan with a drain. However, when the drain line gets clogged with debris, the backup of these materials can trigger leaks or even make the line burst. Although you may be able to unclog this yourself, we recommend calling Progressive Air Systems to efficiently and accurately resolve the issue.
A malfunctioning air conditioner can also trigger health issues or exacerbate existing ones. These are problems that not only cause breakdowns but ones that affect your indoor air quality and can make you sick.
1. Low Refrigerant
Under lockdown circumstances, and the beginning of Florida’s hottest season, it’s imperative to have functional air conditioning. Refrigerant is responsible for drawing heat from your house’s air. If the refrigerant lines spring a leak, the AC unit will labor to reduce the air’s temperature, and your IAQ could get oppressively hot and stuffy.
Your Progressive Air Systems HVAC tech can accurately diagnose the problem and recharge (add refrigerant) so that you can get back to cool comfort as quickly as possible.
2. The Air Conditioner Expels Hot Air
This is another indoor air quality issue that can make your home’s air hot and oppressive. The fix may be simple: take a look at your thermostat. You may have unknowingly set it to “heat” or “fan.” The heat setting will make your house warmer, and fans will constantly blow hot, stagnant air around. Instead, position the thermostat on “cool” or “auto.” This way, the AC only cycles until the room reaches your desired temperature and then shuts off.
3. Dirty Air Filter
Dirty air filters are one of the primary culprits negatively impacting indoor air quality. They’re breeding grounds for huge colonies of dust mites, bacteria, and mold because they simply circulate contaminants back into your house. These pollutants can set off respiratory issues including asthma, allergies, and shortness of breath.
Additionally, the recirculating air dumps dust on your tabletops, floors, electronic equipment, and appliances, which will make them perform inadequately or break down completely.
4. Dirty Ducts
Not only can dirty ducts impede your air conditioner’s ability to cool the air, but they can cause pet dander, pollen, dust, hair, and other impurities to build up and get blown back into your living space. Filthy ducts may also house disease-carrying rodents and insects, as well as mildew and mold. These contaminants can cause a host of health issues, including congestion, sore throat, and even premature aging.
When you’re housebound during the COVID-19 outbreak, it’s important to maintain a comfortable, healthy indoor environment. However, HVAC problems can make you uncomfortable, as well as trigger a host of maladies related to poor indoor air quality.
Contact us today, and one of our trained, highly skilled and friendly technicians will help keep your home a safe, pleasant haven during these challenging times.
Note: We would like all of our customers to know we are practicing CDC guidelines and will work with you to get AC in the safest manner.