Summer in Arizona! It’s pretty incredible out there, isn’t it? Make sure you drink plenty of water and wear sunscreen, and if you start to overheat, get back indoors where you have a reliable air conditioner.
But wait—what’s that you say? Your air conditioner isn’t cooling your home evenly? If you have hot spots in your home that your AC unit can’t seem to cool, or some rooms stay much warmer than others, we’ve got solutions for you.
The First Thing to Rule Out
Before you worry that something is seriously wrong, we need to ask you this. How often have you been cleaning or replacing your air conditioner’s air filter?
If the air filter gets clogged with dust, it doesn’t allow enough air to flow through. This prevents your air conditioner from doing as much as it should to cool your home and lessens the circulation of what cool air it is able to produce. The air filter should be changed (cleaned if it’s reusable; replaced if it’s disposable) once a month during the heat of the summer. In particularly dusty conditions, or if you have pets, you might want to do it even more frequently.
Other Causes of Uneven Cooling
If your air filter is sparkling clean and you still can’t get the temperature in your home to even out, there are several possible causes.
- Ducts: Holes or cracks in your ductwork could be allowing conditioned air to escape or non-conditioned air to be drawn into the ductwork in certain parts of your home. And if you have a zone control system with dampers to open and close sections of your ductwork, there could be a problem with either the dampers themselves or the thermostats that control them.
- Refrigerant: If damage has occurred to any section of the coils that contain your AC unit’s refrigerant, you could have a refrigerant leak. This diminishes the cooling power of the unit and often results in limited cooling that doesn’t make it all the way through the house.
- Fan Motor: Just as a clogged air filter would prevent enough airflow over the evaporator coils of the indoor unit, a malfunctioning fan motor would do the same. With less air being blown, there will be less cooling and decreased distribution of the limited cool air created.
- Short Cycling: This is also a symptom and not precisely a cause, but can help narrow down the specific issue. Short cycling occurs when the compressor starts up to begin a cooling cycle but shuts down again almost immediately. Moments later, the compressor tries again. With all the starting and stopping, the air conditioner can’t properly cool or circulate enough air. This puts a great deal of strain on the expensive, irreplaceable compressor, so don’t ignore it!
- An Aging AC Unit: As your air conditioner reaches the end of its lifespan, it cannot continue to work as effectively or as efficiently as it once did. It may be absolutely worth your money to pay for a small repair that will get you through the rest of the summer. But if your air conditioner is over ten years old, an expensive repair might not be a great investment, as you’ll still have a less-than-ideal AC system that will soon need to be replaced.
If you’re experiencing uneven cooling or have any questions about HVAC in Tucson, AZ, we’d be happy to help you sort things out.
Contact Picture Rocks Cooling, Heating & Plumbing today to schedule an appointment with our professionals.