As a homeowner, it's important for you to be able to quickly tell when your home's air conditioner isn't running properly. Once you realize there's an issue, you can quickly turn off the system and call a licensed HVAC contractor to schedule a repair visit. Taking these quick steps can often prevent further problems from arising that could unnecessarily increase your repair bill. Even if you have to go a few days without cold air in your home, it's better to leave the unit turned off until you can have a professional look at it. Here are three symptoms that there's a problem with the A/C.
Dramatic Increase In Your Utility Bills
If you've noticed that your utility bills have increased significantly, it's important to first rule out factors that don't relate to the health of your air conditioner. For example, you need to assess whether your household use of electrical devices has increased or if the utilities company hasn't increased its usage rates. If you can rule out these potential causes, there's a chance that you're dealing with an A/C problem. Numerous elements, including duct issues and problems with the motor, can reduce the efficiency of the air conditioner and make it run unnecessarily – thus boosting your bills.
New Noises During Use
In most cases, your air conditioner should operate rather quietly. While you can expect a humming sound and the sound of air moving through the ducts in your home, other noises are a sign that there's a problem. A rattle, for example, can indicate that there are loose parts in the unit that could simply need to be tightened or need to be replaced. A high-pitched squeal while the air conditioner is running can indicate the motor is failing or that there's a need for lubrication somewhere.
Weak Flow Of Air
When you consistently use your home's air conditioner, you should have an idea of how much air is flowing out of the floor vents when the system is running properly. However, if you've noticed that the A/C is running but the air coming through the vents is little more than a trickle, it's time to get a professional involved. This symptom can indicate a wide range of problems. There could be something wrong with the fan on the unit or there's a chance that your ducts need to be thoroughly cleaned or even repaired.
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