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Picture Rocks Cooling Heating & Plumbing Blog

Catch AC Problems Early and Keep Repairs Small


It can be tempting to postpone all kinds of things that might be inconvenient or costly. When you suspect that something is wrong with your air conditioner, and you don’t know just how bad it is or how much it will cost to have it repaired, you might try to push it out of your mind and hope for the best.

But that’s the last thing you should do. Delaying air conditioner repairs can be catastrophic. Prompt repair can resolve a small issue before it becomes a big problem. Here are some examples to encourage you to take quick action and avoid AC disasters.

The Belt

Like many appliances, air conditioners utilize a belt. If you notice a screeching or squealing noise coming from your AC unit, it’s likely that the belt is making it. Perhaps it’s wearing out, starting to tear, or simply coming dislodged from the pulleys that should be holding it in position. 

  • Prompt Repair: A technician can get your air conditioner’s belt back in place or replace it with a new one quite easily and at a low cost. It’s not an expensive component.
  • Delayed Repair: The belt will eventually wear through, snap, or fall off of the pulleys. In the process, it’s likely to cause additional damage by hitting other components, many of which could be much more expensive to replace than the belt itself.

The Fan

A rattle or clatter can indicate a problem with the fan which circulates the conditioned air. It may be that it’s coming loose or that a fan blade is damaged.

  • Prompt Repair: This could be as simple as tightening a screw so the fan will no longer wobble, but if it’s truly broken, the fan can be replaced.
  • Delayed Repair: When the screw finally gives way and lets the fan fly free, it will almost definitely crash into other parts, most likely the motor, which will then also need repair or replacement.

The Coils

A hissing or bubbling sound, sweet chemical smell, ice on the evaporator coils, or decrease in cooling power can all indicate a refrigerant leak, which means there is damage or deterioration somewhere along the coils that carry the refrigerant.

  • Prompt Repair: A technician can examine the coils, pinpoint the problem areas, and patch them. Then the refrigerant can be refilled.
  • Delayed Repair: Without enough refrigerant to do the job of cooling your home, your air conditioner will try harder and harder. This puts strain on the compressor, the most expensive and least replaceable component. If that fails, you’ll probably need to replace the entire air conditioner. 

The Ducts

In a central AC system, the cooled air is blown through ductwork. If you’re hearing sounds from the ducts themselves and not the AC unit, if cool air is coming out of some ducts but not all, or if a large amount of dust comes with the cool air, you might have a duct problem.

  • Prompt Repair: Damaged ductwork can allow conditioned air to escape or pull dirty air in, but it can be repaired and sealed very effectively.
  • Delayed Repair: The loss of your cool air will mean your air conditioner has to expend more and more effort to cool your home. This can raise your utility bills, often by as much as 30%, as well as putting strain on the compressor.

If you think you might need AC repair in Tucson, AZ, sooner is always better.

Contact Picture Rocks Cooling, Heating & Plumbing today to schedule an appointment with our professionals.

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