If you live in a climate with hot summers, you most likely rely on your home's air conditioner to keep your home cool and comfortable. Thus, if your AC turns on during a hot summer afternoon and the air flowing through your vents is not cold, it is normal to be alarmed. In the event that your air conditioner is blowing warm air, it does not mean that your AC has failed and needs to be replaced. In most cases, air conditioning issues that prevent the AC unit from producing cold air can be repaired. Some of the most common causes of warm air flowing from the vents when your air conditioner is on include:
Dirty Condenser Unit
The condenser unit is the part of an air conditioning system that is located outdoors. Cold air is made inside the condenser unit when the coolant absorbs the heat in the air flowing through the unit. If the condenser unit is dirty, it will not operate properly and cold air won't be made. One of the easiest ways to ensure that your condenser unit remains clean is by scheduling an AC tuneup service during the spring-- during a tuneup, an HVAC technician will clean all of the components in the condenser unit. In addition to having the condenser unit tuned up, you should also inspect it on a regular basis to help ensure that there are no weeds, shrubs, or debris blocking airflow.
The coolant inside the condenser unit plays a vital role in creating the cold air that blows into your home. While your AC unit will not use up coolant, it is possible for a coolant leak to occur. If there is a coolant leak, there will not be enough coolant to absorb the heat from the air inside the unit. AC coolant is very toxic, so if you suspect a leak, it is essential to contact an HVAC repair company. An experienced HVAC technician will be able to repair the leak and add additional coolant to the system so it can make cold air.
Bad Air Filter
It is very important to replace your air filter when it gets dirty. If you neglect to replace an old, dirty air filter, air flow through the AC system will be blocked. When this happens, the condenser unit may freeze up, and no cold air will come through the vents. When this happens, the fan may still run, but the air that you feel will be warm.
In many cases, you will need a professional who handles residential ac servicing and repairs to help sort these issues, and others, out.