How to Troubleshoot Your HVAC System

Is your AC making a funny noise? Is the fan on but no cold air is coming out? HVAC units have a lot of separate components, so it’s not hard for something to go wrong with one of them at any given time.

Energy-efficient Carrier HVAC unitWhen the AC is on the fritz, here are some simple ways to check the system before you call out your heating and air company:


  • Check for power. If you can’t get the air to start flowing, always run to the power source first. Check the circuit panel to ensure your breaker is still working. Try turning the breaker off for around 10 seconds. Sometimes, turning the system off and on will restore power. If your thermostat is battery powered, check the batteries.
  • Check the thermostat. If you’re concerned that the air isn’t coming on when it’s supposed to, try setting the thermostat to “cool” and lower the temperature by 3-5 degrees. Within a minute, you should notice cool air coming out of the registers. If there is no cool air, check the unit’s coils. Sometimes AC unit coils can freeze in the presence of water. If it is frozen, you can turn off the system’s power and thermostat and let it sit for a few hours to defrost. Then, clean the coils and turn everything back on.
  • Check the filter. Sometimes dirty air filters can cause a system to perform poorly. Check the unit’s air filter for dirt. Replace or clean the filter as recommended in your owner’s manual. Disposable filters often need to be replaced every couple of months to function properly.
  • Check ductwork and registers. For a cooling system that seems to have inadequate airflow, check the ductwork in your attic or crawl space and make sure all the register vents have been open. Crimped ductwork can impede airflow and render your system inefficient.
  • Check outside. If the fan in your outdoor unit is not working or blowing hot air, you could have a problem with some of the interior wiring. Turn off all the power and check the wiring connections within the unit for damage. You could be experiencing damage in the blower motor, control board, or run capacitor.

If you have examined your system and performed some simple troubleshooting and it is still not running properly, it may be time to contact a professional. Damaged belts and other electrical components may need to be repaired to get your HVAC back up and running. However, the most common problems, like an iced up unit or uneven cooling can be remedied with some of these simple troubleshooting tips. For more information on maintaining or fixing your AC or Heat, reach out to Climatic Heating and Cooling today.

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