How to DIY get the air-conditioning running again after a breakdown


Your air-conditioning is an important piece of your home especially if you live in an environment that is prone to hot afternoons and muggy nights. But what happens if you turn on the AC one hot day and it offers no cooling relief? Well, you can call for an AC repairman, or you could try finding the problem and fix it yourself.

But before you attempt fixing your AC yourself, you need to ensure you have the appropriate tools. Said tools include; a socket or ratchet set, screwdrivers (preferably insulated ones), a nut driver, an adjustable wrench, needle-nose pliers, and a voltage tester. You will also likely need a multimeter to test if fuses are still functional or burnt out.

Below are a list of DIY attempts you can make to get your air-conditioning back to doing what it was meant for – Keeping you cool.

  1. Test the AC’s fuses

You can use a multimeter to test your fuses or play it by eye. If the fuses are faulty, that means the air-conditioner has an electrical fault that’s stopping it from functioning. A blown fuse is also a probable sign that there might be a bigger fault with the AC’s condensing unit. If after replacing your AC’s fuses they soon blow again, call a repairman to have a look at your condenser and the whole AC.

  1. Check the air condenser

In the event your home isn’t getting properly cooled even though the AC can turn on and the thermostat is properly set, the problem might be due to a dirty or clogged air condenser. You can affirm this by checking the outside unit of your AC and cleaning its immediate surroundings. Clear it of any weeds or debris that might be impeding air circulation and the system’s fans.

Next thing to do is check the AC’s air filters and verify they are clean. A dirty air filter will obstruct air flow to the evaporator coil which will cause the coil to freeze, thus leading to cool air not making it into your home. Having pets will mean you need to check your filter more often because your pet’s shed fur is capable of clogging it up. An air filter you can see through is clean, anything else is dirty so get it cleaned.

  1. Check the inside of the access panel

Trace the electrical wiring from your house till you find the access panel. Be sure to turn off or unplug the AC first, then take the screws off the access panel to open it. Check if rodents have been nesting in the panel and if they might have chewed through anything important. If you see any cut wires or chewed insulation, you can try fixing it yourself or play it safe and call a repairman. If you intend on fixing any damage in the access panel yourself, be sure to discharge the capacitor first and clear out any nest in the access panel.

  1. Check the ducts

If there’s poor circulation of cool air in the house, and you have a central cooling system, check to make sure there are no blockages in the vents or ducts. If blockages are found, remove them to free up the ducts so air can freely circulate through.

  1. Check the thermostat

One important thing most people fail to do when their AC isn’t working is check the settings on the thermostat. Make sure the thermostat is properly set.

Please keep in mind that attempting extensive repairs on an AC without proper tools or skillset can be dangerous to both the AC and yourself. This is why, experts such as FixMyAC recommend hiring experts to deal with serious AC faults.

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