When it comes to HVAC troubleshooting, you don’t have to necessarily call in the HVAC contractor immediately. While repair has to be done by the experts, you can actually do your own troubleshooting. That is of course if you’re interested.
You can start your troubleshooting at the thermostat of your HVAC system. You need to see if the device is on cool and if it is set lower than the typical room temperature. This is a particularly important step because it tells you that there in fact is really a problem or issue about your system. Don’t commit the silly mistake of immediately calling in a technician when he’s about to find out that the only problem is that the thermostat is not turned on cool mode. You’ll still pay for it!
Here are the questions you need answers for your troubleshooting task:
1 – Do you feel air coming out of the ceiling registers or the floor?
If you don’t feel it, you have to check if the fan on the outside unit of your system is running. In case the fan on the outside is also not running, the next thing to check is the breakers for the air/furnace handler and the air conditioner. See if they are on. Now if the breaker is not tripped, it likely means that the problem is your thermostat. In some cases though, it might also be the control board of the furnace/air handler or any wires that run through the handler and the thermostat.
2 – Do you see the fan on the outside unit blowing out hot air?
There are times when your HVAC system is not running but the fan outside is still up and running. In this instance, the problem might be the blower motor, run capacitor, or the control board of the furnace/air handler. When you see that the fan motor isn’t running, you have to shut the power off to the unit, after which you check the wiring connections to see if there are any damages like burning. You also need to look into the wire connections in the compressor terminal box. If you see some damage, then heating and air conditioning repair is certainly in place. But then again, you don’t have to do it by yourself. There are people who can do it for you.
3 – Is there ice presence seen on the lines that connect the indoor and outdoor units?
If the furnace blower is running, try to see if there is any ice or frost around the indoor and outdoor units. At this point, it is also expected for you to see water around the furnace. Once you see ice on the copper lines going outside, you have to turn off the unit for two hours or so, but be sure the blower on the furnace is still running, the purpose of which is to allow any ice buildup to melt faster. After waiting two hours, you can now proceed with the troubleshooting. What you have to do is turn the air conditioner back on and then let it be for about five minutes. Next, try to feel the larger copper line situated outside. It is normal if it is cold. But if not or if it happens that frost is forming on the line, then you have a Freon issue. And yes, at this point you have to call in the HVAC contractor or repair technician to do the job for you.