Cleaning Coils on Windows Air Conditioner
Troubleshooting Simple Problems
You can easily fix many common issues with your window unit air conditioner. Troubleshoot the unit for these simple problems before calling in professional help.
Water Dripping From the Unit
It’s alarming to see water dripping off your window unit air conditioner or to find a puddle growing beneath it. Fortunately, this issue isn’t as serious as it seems. A water leak simply means that the pan beneath the unit slopes toward the front of the unit and not the back. Readjust your unit so it slopes backward to instantly correct the problem. When the pan slopes toward the exterior of the home as it should, condensate from the evaporator coil will gather in the pan and drip outside.
Unit Cycling On and Off Frequently
If you feel like you’re constantly hearing your unit cycle on and off, there’s probably a problem with the thermostat or temperature sensor. You might be able to fix this issue yourself. Before calling a professional, adjust your drapes so they don’t obstruct the thermostat or front panel, and clear leaves away from the condenser. If this doesn’t solve the problem, keep reading to learn about problems best serviced by a professional.
Unit Cools Inefficiently
If you’re fighting a constant battle to keep your home cool, there’s probably something preventing your air conditioning unit from operating at peak efficiency. The most common diagnosis – and easiest solution – is a dirty filter.
You should change your window AC filter regularly. Aim to change it at least once every three months and as often as once a month if you have children, pets or a lot of dust in the home. Changing the filter is quick, simple and affordable. Simply open the unit, remove the old filter and replace it with a new one.
AC Unit Won’t Turn On
If your unit won’t turn on, there are a few simple problems you can troubleshoot before calling a professional. First, check to make sure the unit is plugged in. This might seem fairly obvious, but it’s easy to overlook, particularly if the unit plugs into an outlet hidden behind a piece of furniture. If the unit is plugged in, check to make sure you haven’t blown a fuse. If resetting the circuit breaker doesn’t work, it’s time to move on to professional solutions.
When to Hire a Professional Contractor
There are many instances where simple at-home solutions won’t work. It’s important to turn to a professional for all serious problems with your window air conditioner unit. Below are some common problems that a professional contractor can help you with. If you’re experiencing other less common problems with your unit, your contractor can help you diagnose and solve those, as well.
A unit that cycles on and off too often typically has a problem with the thermostat or temperature sensor. A professional will check the unit to make sure the thermostat sensor is positioned correctly. This might include delicately adjusting the wire and moving the thermostat sensor so it doesn’t touch the evaporator coil.
Your unit might also suffer from a small refrigerant leak. Any standard service visit will catch this problem. Have your contractor tune up the unit and check for anything out-of-place. He might perform a variety of helpful tasks including straightening the fins with a fin comb, charging the refrigerant and repairing leaks.
Blown Fuses From the Window Unit Air Conditioner
If your unit blows fuses or pops the circuit breaker when it turns on, you’re probably running it on an inadequately sized circuit. The typical unit can run off a 15 amp circuit, but larger window air conditioners need a dedicated circuit. Contact an electrician to run a dedicated 20 amp circuit directly to the window air conditioner. This will put an end to blown fuses and eliminate the need to strategically reposition electrical devices throughout the home in an attempt to avoid the problem.