As the Summer Scorcher Arrives, Watch for Warning Signs from Your AC
Temperatures here in the deserts and inland areas of Southern California are already rising above 100°F during the day—and it isn’t even officially summer yet! We hope you’ve already arranged for maintenance for your air conditioning system, but don’t panic if you haven’t: it’s not too late to contact our technicians to schedule this vital service.
But even the best maintenance job can’t stop all air conditioning problems, and the intense heat we experience puts immense strain on household cooling systems that can lead to malfunctions. During these first days of scorching hot weather, pay close attention to your AC system when it’s running. If you detect signs of anything that’s out of the ordinary, you’ll be able to arrange for air conditioning repair in Indio, CA or the surrounding areas in time to prevent more expensive repairs or even a complete system breakdown during one of those sizzling 100°+ days.
A Short Guide to Early Summer Warning Signs from an AC
Here are a few of the telltale signs something is wrong with an air conditioner during the early parts of the year.
- Ice developing along the indoor coil: If you see this, and you haven’t yet scheduled maintenance, the likely cause is a clogged air filter. Change the filter for a new one (something you’ll need to continue every 4 to 6 weeks for the rest of the season). If the coil is still developing ice, you may have leaks in the refrigerant lines, which is a serious problem that puts the entire air conditioner in jeopardy—and requires professionals to repair.
- Hot spots around the house: You’re getting cool air in the living room, but some of the bedrooms feel warmer than they should. This might be due to poor insulation or cracks around windows. But it’s also one of the first indications an air conditioner—for a number of reasons—is losing its cooling ability. The best step is to have HVAC technicians find out what’s wrong: miscalibrated thermostat, faulty zone controls, improperly sized system, refrigerant loss, etc.
- The AC is short cycling: Short-cycling is when an air conditioner’s compressor turns on and off rapidly over a short period, such as every fifteen minutes. If you hear the noise of the AC compressor switching on and off multiple times during an hour, something is wrong. It could be stress on the compressor, air leaking from ducts, a clogged air filter, a loss of refrigerant, dying capacitors, a thermostat reading incorrect temperatures, or a number of other issues, all of which require assistance from HVAC professionals.
- Acrid smells from the vents: When an air conditioning system first turns on for the season, you can expect the smell of dust coming from the vents. This is just the collection of dust in the ductwork getting blown out into the air. However, if you detect a persistent acrid odor, it often means one of the motors is running hot and in danger of burning out.
You may have noticed how the symptoms above often have multiple possible causes. This is one of the reasons you must have licensed HVAC technicians on the job: they’ll know how to diagnose the problem correctly so they can make accurate repairs.
Russell’s Heating & Air Conditioning serves the Inland Empire and Desert Communities.