7 Reasons Why Your Central Air Conditioner Unit Is Not Turning On

Have you ever had one of those days when the weather in Vaughan is ultra-hot and humid? You’re really ready to relax with your good ol’ air conditioning, but when you switch it on, nothing happens. It’s not blowing cold air, and it’s not even blowing hot air. Your central air conditioner just doesn’t turn on at all.

Why? Here are 7 reasons why your central air might not be responding.

1. Thermostat Issues

Check the AC thermostat first. It must be powered on with a functional battery before you have any hope of the air conditioner working. You also should check that the thermostat is not broken and is properly calibrated. In addition, ensure that it is switched to “Cool” and is set 3-5 degrees below room temperature, minimum. Wait a few minutes to see whether these minor adjustments clear up the issue. If so, you’re in luck.

Otherwise, keep right on going down the list.

2. Tripped Breaker or Blown Fuse

You need electricity to power your air conditioner. So if the AC’s breaker has tripped or its fuse has blown (for a pre-1970 house), your air conditioner will not be turning on. Go to your electrical panel and reset the breaker or replace the fuse. If the breaker immediately re-trips, you’ve got an overloaded circuit, frayed wire, or other electrical hazards that need fast, professional repair for safety’s sake.

3. Frozen Coils

Yes, you can have too much of a good thing… in this case, too much cold. When your AC freezes up — usually either the evaporator (indoors) or condenser (outdoors) coils — you might have a problem with the air conditioner not turning on — or at best, turning on but not cooling). It’s important to turn the central air off and allow the coils to thaw completely. Don’t know what an evaporator coil is? Learn how this piece, and three key others, are integral to how your AC works.

Next comes our usual advice: change the filter.

Finally, ask an HVAC service company to check the system for problems, like a blocked condensate line or malfunctioning fan.

4. Reset Required

The air conditioning reset switch may be the issue. Try going outside and simply pressing the switch (you’ll find it right near the condenser unit) to reset the system. Some ACs don’t come equipped with a reset switch. In that case, you can duplicate the effect by using the thermostat to shut the system down temporarily, waiting a few minutes, and then turning it back on.

5. Clogged Air Filter

A dirty, clogged air filter could be the culprit when your air conditioner’s not turning on, just as it is the reason behind so many other HVAC problems. (You need an unrestricted flow of air around your heating and cooling system so they can work their best.) Take a minute to replace or clean the filter now — you’ll find it in your indoor unit. Then try to get into the habit of checking your filter monthly, and changing it at least every 90 days (or more often as necessary). It should also be part of your checklist of things to do before turning on the AC for the season.

6. Condenser Problem

The condenser (the large square unit outside in your yard) must be connected to your household electricity supply. Ensure that this essential component is securely plugged in, and have a qualified technician check that the electrical connections are not loose. If it still doesn’t work, you might need to have the motor replaced.

7. Failed Motor

The motor works as the “heart” of your air conditioner, keeping the whole system going. So if your motor has worn out, no matter what switches you adjust, the AC won’t turn on. Ask an expert to inspect the motor and let you know whether air conditioning repair is an option. If the verdict is negative, it’s time to replace your air conditioning.

Whatever Your AC Problem, Husky Can Help

Count on Husky for complete central air conditioning service. We offer air conditioner maintenance, troubleshooting, and repair, to save your AC if at all possible. And when it’s time for a replacement, we carry an excellent line of energy-efficient new air conditioners.

Here’s an actual Google review of our air conditioning expertise:

“I called Husky when my AC refused to turn on, and they sent a repairman the same day. They sent Hami, who was professional and diagnosed the issue quickly. He had the repair part with him and fixed the issue promptly. The whole process was quick, painless and efficient.”

Jeffrey H.

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