5 Common Causes of Poor AC Performance

Furnace Air Filter Change

Today's central air conditioners are generally very reliable. When problems arise it's usually the result of lack of maintenance or an aging unit that is reaching the end of its lifespan. A well-maintained central AC should last 10-15 years. Here are some common reasons a central AC may not be cooling as well as it should.

1. Low Refrigerant Levels
If your air conditioner is running for longer than usual and not cooling properly, may have low coolant levels caused by a refrigerant leak. Annual AC maintenance can help find problems suchs as coolant leaks before they lead to a breakdown during hot weather.

2. Thermostat or Sensor Problems
If rooms in your home are not getting cool enough, check that the thermostat is set to "cool" and is set low enough to turn the unit on. Also ensure that the batteries are charged if the thermostat has batteries. If the themostat is not working, check that the circuit breaker to the air condioner hasn't tripped.

3. Drainage Problems
An AC condensate pan that is not draining properly can cause the cooling system to malfunction.  Inspect the condensate drain pan to ensure it's not backed up and clear the drain line if needed.

4. Dirty Air Filter
Furnace air filters should be replaced monthly or as recommended by the filter manufacturer. A dirty filter will cause the air conditioner to run more often, reducing efficiency, wasting energy and shortening the lifespan of the unit.

5. Leaking or Obstructed Air Ducts
Air ducts are an often overlooked part of a home's cooling system. Make sure that air vents are fully open and not obstructed by curtains, rugs or furniture. Air duct cleaning and duct sealing can ensure that your air duct system works as efficiently as possible without wasting energy.

If your home's central air conditioner is not cooling as well as it should, call Superior Plumbing & Heating. We can perform a comprehensive system check to identify any problems and recommend solutions to optimize the performance of your cooling system.
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