Troubleshooting an AC That Will Not Turn On

August 5th, 2019

Is it getting hot in here? 

If you’re in Orange County and suddenly find yourself without air conditioning in the summer, things can start to heat up quickly. At Home Comfort USA, we will work tirelessly to help troubleshoot the problem and restore comfort to your overheated home – and we guarantee your satisfaction in the process. 

There are a number of reasons why the AC may be malfunctioning, and our dedicated technicians can quickly spot the problem and offer affordable (and quick) solutions.

Learn more about troubleshooting with these blog posts What Does an AC Tune-Up Include?, No Stone Unturned with Air Conditioning Maintenance, and 5 Indoor Air Quality Tips for a Long Summer​.

Top Reasons the AC is Malfunctioning

If the temperature is rising, it could be due to any of the following common AC issues: 

AC technician unloading a unit1. Thermostat Settings

Like anything in life, sometimes the simplest solution is the most effective. At the first sign of uncomfortable temperatures, check to ensure the thermostat is set to the “cool” setting and the temperature setting is low enough. It is not uncommon for the thermostat to be inadvertently touched or adjusted – accidentally turning it off or to “heat.”

2. Circuit Breakers 

Another common – and inexpensive – reason the AC may go out due to dysconnectivity with the circuit breaker. If you believe this may be the culprit, carefully reset the system (which should be labeled) only one time. If this is the issue, the AC will restart quickly and cool air should start flowing. 

3. Dirty Air Filter 

Forgetting to change the air filter in the home is not uncommon. However, letting this routine household task go for too long can actually damage the AC system – or destroy it altogether. Reason being, when an air filter is clogged with debris, the air conditioner has to work overtime to comfortably cool the home. When air ducts become completely clogged, the air conditioner could quit working altogether – as this causes the air coil to freeze over and the compressor to ultimately fail (requiring replacement). 

4. Blocked Drain Pan

Known formally as a “condensate drain pan,” this component to the AC system is necessary to catch condensation that forms as a natural by-product of the air conditioning process. Over time, the drain pain (which is usually made of plastic) can crack and allow water to flow out – which can lead to water damage in the home. As well, the drain leading to the pan can clog due to debris or a foreign object. When this happens, water can back up into the unit and cause extensive damage. 

5. Faulty Motor

The AC unit is powered by a central motor that, when damaged or aging, can lead to malfunction. Oftentimes this is diagnosed by the technician listening to the sound the unit is making. If the motor is to blame for the rising temperatures, it may be possible to simply replace this part rather than installing a new unit. 

At Home Comfort USA, we promise honesty in all service calls. We never recommended unnecessary parts or repairs, and work hard to keep costs low (and satisfaction high) for all our customers.