Air Conditioner Repair – Do This First

By August 29, 2018 Air Conditioner

When your air conditioner stops cooling, what should you do before calling Sun-Aire for air conditioning repair?  The homeowner can do a few simple and quick things to assist in air conditioning repair before calling Sun-Aire.

Homeowner Fix

When diagnosing air conditioning repair, we always start with the easy problems. Please read the entire article including the disclaimer and warning, before proceeding with the items in this subheading. The homeowner can do the following,

1.      Check the thermostat first.

   a.       Verify that the thermostat is set to “cool”, and the “set point temperature” is lower than the temperature of the house as shown on the thermostat.

   b.      If the thermostat has a digital display, is the display available? If the information display is not visible, power is not available, or the thermostat is bad.

       i.      If the thermostat is battery operated, change the batteries.

       ii.      Thermostats without batteries are powered by your indoor unit, the furnace or the air handling unit.

   c.       For thermostats powered by the indoor unit, check the following,

       i.      If your indoor unit is a furnace, the code requires a fused switch, called an SSU (https://structuretech1.com/furnace-disconnect-requirements/) which is usually on the wall near the furnace. This switch has an on and off position, and a round fuse under the hinged cover.

1.      Verify the switch is “on”.

3.      At the furnace, turn the switch off, open the disconnect hinged cover, and carefully remove the round fuse. This fuse will have a clear cover for you to look at the metal tab inside. If there is an internal burn mark on the clear cover and/or the metal tab has a void, the fuse needs to be replaced with the exact style and amps of the fuse being removed. After replacing the fuse, turn the switch to “on” and reset the panel breaker to on.

        ii.      If your indoor unit is an air handling unit, it should have an electrical breaker that is accessible when the metal panel is fully secured to the unit. Verify the breaker in the air handling unit is “on”, as well as the breaker in the electrical panel.

        iii.      Once power is restored to the thermostat, set the thermostat as noted above. To check the indoor unit, turn the fan selection to “on” and verify the fan is on. If the air conditioner does not come on, move to the following homeowner fix.

2.      Verify power to the air conditioner.

   a.       At the house electrical breaker panel, locate and make certain the air conditioning breaker is on. If the breaker has tripped, reset it to on.

         i.      This can be done at the same time power is being checked for the indoor unit.

         ii.      If the breaker is reset to on and then trips immediately, call Sun-Aire for air conditioning repair, because most likely the air conditioning compressor has a short to ground.

   b.      The air conditioner should have an outdoor disconnect that is close to the unit. Most of these disconnects have a hinged cover, and under thatcover there should be ether a “plunger type pull” or an “on and off” switch.

         i.      If you open the cover and wire in the disconnect is exposed, close the cover and call Sun-Aire.  The wiring in this disconnect is line voltage and can cause serious harm or death. A plastic panel should be installed that conceals the wire to protect from electrical shock.

          ii.      With the cover open and the plastic panel in its place, make certain the “plunger type pull” is installed, or the switch is turned to “on”.

  1. Is the air filter clean or dirty and plugged?  Make certain all your filters are clean.
  2. Call Sun-Aire for air conditioning repair if the Homeowner Fix items have not solved the problem.

Disclaimer and Warning

Follow the manufacturers recommendations for your thermostat, air conditioner, furnace, air handling unit, and electrical breaker panel. Do not gain access to the inside of the HVAC listed above, because you will be exposed to line voltage electrical that can cause serious harm or death.

If your electrical breaker panel does not have the protective cover installed that covers the internal panel wiring and wiring to the breakers, do not check the breakers. If the electrical breaker panel does have the protective cover installed, do not remove this cover for any reason. The electrical breaker panel has line voltage electrical than can cause serious harm or death. This same warning applies to the air conditioner outdoor disconnect.

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