When the dog days of summer arrive, having refrigerated air conditioning keeps you and your family comfortable and can help prevent heat-related illnesses, such as heatstroke. While this creature comfort can be a blessing, it can also cause frustration when it does not operate properly. One of the most common troubleshooting issues that occurs with an AC unit is that is starts to blow warm air rather than the refreshing, cool air it should. This problem can often occur without warning, and there are four common reasons that might be causing the malfunction.
1. Airflow Is Restricted
When the airflow through your unit’s air conditioner is partially blocked, the air that comes through the ducts and the vents takes much longer to reach the rooms you want to cool and as a result, by the time it does, the air is already warm. When airflow is restricted, it may also cause the system’s compressor to fail. As a result, cool air can no longer be circulated through the home. To increase airflow, check ducts, filters, and vents to ensure they are not blocked by dust or pet hair.
2. The Unit Is Low on Refrigerant
Every air conditioner uses Freon to cool the air in your home, and when your unit runs low, this can cause it to start blowing warm air. However, there are a few other signs you can look for that might signal you need to have more Freon added to your unit. Before your AC starts to blow warm air, it may run in longer cycles, since it now takes longer to cool your home, and you may notice that your outdoor refrigerant line has ice buildup on it. These are all signs of low Freon and they should be addressed immediately.
3. A Return Duct Is Broken
Your home’s return ducts maintain how refrigerated air is circulated so when one is damaged, it may cause a drastic reduction in its temperature. When a duct is blocked or broken, the air pressure within it cannot be maintained and as a result, warm air from the outdoors or the attic may be pulled in and blown out into the rooms of your home. If you suspect that one of your home’s return ducts is broken, you may want to contact a company that offers professional AC repair services to ensure the duct is repaired properly.
4. The Circuit Breaker Has Tripped
Your AC unit uses a lot of electricity, and if you run other large electrical appliances in the home while it is running, such as a dishwasher or an electric dryer, this may cause a circuit breaker to trip. When this happens, your unit’s outdoor component may stop running, and since this is the part of your AC that creates the cool air, the result is unrefrigerated, warm air being pushed into your home by the indoor fan.
If you are using a number of appliances and notice a brief interruption in power, you may want to check your circuit breaker and reset it if needed. Once you do that, take a moment to ensure both the outdoor and indoor units are working in tandem to properly cool your home.
There are a number of reasons that your home’s AC unit may suddenly start to blow warm air. However, some of these issues can be easily resolved by a professional HVAC repairperson who can help get it up and running in top shape once more.