Why Is My Air Conditioner Not Turning On?

The cold days of winter are coming to a close. Soon you’ll be switching your HVAC system from the heater to the air conditioner. You expect everything to work as it normally does, but you might be surprised to find that it’s not cooling.

Is your air conditioner not turning on? If that’s the case, then you might be wondering what could be causing the problem. Read on to learn about some common causes of HVAC issues!

Verify the Thermostat Works

The first thing you want to do is make sure that the thermostat is functional.

First, go to the thermostat and make sure the screen turns on. If nothing happens when you push a button on the screen, it may be turned. Check to make sure the power is turned on first.

If the power won’t turn on, the batteries may have died. Replace the batteries to see if that fixes the issue. If not, you’ll need to look into replacing the thermostat.

Make Sure It’s Set to Cool

If your thermostat is working, then it might not be switched to the right setting. Verify that the thermostat is set to cool and not heat or fan.

Next, check that the indoor temperature is low enough to trigger the air conditioner to turn on. Set the cooling temperature to five or more degrees below the indoor temperature to see if that triggers the air to turn on. If you haven’t used the air conditioner in a while, it may take a few minutes to turn on.

Verify the Shut-Off Switch Isn’t Flipped

If you’ve had work done on your air conditioner in the past year, then that might be the problem. Many AC units have a shut-off box nearby so that technicians can perform work on the unit safely.

It’s possible that the technician forgot to flip the switch back on when they left. You likely haven’t noticed because you haven’t had to use it since they did the work. The switch can be inside your home or outside.

If you can’t locate it, you might need to contact a local pro to help you out. View this HVAC company to schedule an appointment.

Check the Circuit Breaker

The circuit breaker controls everything that runs on electricity in your home. Sometimes, however, a switch gets flipped and power can’t get to your AC unit.

Head over to your electrical panel or fuse box and flip the switch to your AC unit. If that’s the cause of your air conditioning woes, then you should start having cool air in your home soon. If not, then it’s time to move on to the next possible cause.

Perform a Reset

It’s possible you need to reset your air conditioner.

Some, but not all air conditioners have a reset switch. If yours has one, it’ll be close to the outside unit. All you need to do to get your air conditioner to reset in this instance is to hit the switch.

If you don’t have a reset button, then you can still reset your air conditioner. Turn your air conditioner totally off on the thermostat. Then you’ll just wait five to ten minutes and turn it back on again.

Clogged Lines

Every air conditioner has lines that drain away the condensation created when you run your AC unit. It is possible for those lines to become clogged over time. When that happens, a safety switch flips and turns off your air conditioner.

If this has occurred, then you need to unclog the line using something like a shop vacuum. If your air conditioner has a drain pump, then the pump may have stopped working. This might be something you call a pro out for if you don’t have experience dealing with condensate drain lines and pumps.

Blown Fuses

You disconnect box functions via a set of fuses. If you’ve been using your air conditioner a lot or if you’ve had power surges, it’s possible that one of these fuses has blown. Without the fuses in working order, your air conditioner cannot operate.

Turn off the power to the air conditioner unit before you try to perform any work on the fuses. Working with fuses can be dangerous, so you might call out an electrician or an HVAC specialist to assist if you want to be safe.

Air Filter Issues

If you haven’t changed your air filter in a while, then that might be what’s causing your air conditioner not to run. Over time, air filters get loaded up with dust, dirt, and all kinds of allergens.

If it’s too clogged, then air is not going to flow through the filter. It can also cause water droplets to freeze around the coils of your heater. Grab a new air filter and trade it out for a new one if your old one is worse for wear.

Filters should be changed once a month on average. The frequency can change depending on your outside environment and if you have pets.

Evaporator Coils

Just like your air filters can get clogged with dust and debris, the evaporator coils on your air conditioner can become super dirty and hinder your AC’s performance. A small amount of debris can make your AC less efficient, and a lot of debris buildup can stop it altogether. Regular maintenance can help prevent this issue from occurring in the future.

Is Your Air Conditioner Not Turning On?

Why is your air conditioner not turning on? Any one of these issues could be the root cause. Don’t be afraid to call a pro to help you out if you can’t identify what’s causing the problem.

In the future, consider having an HVAC technician come out to your home before the weather heats up to make sure your HVAC system is in good working condition.

Need more tips to help you out around the house? Check out the rest of our blog for all the info you need to become your own handyman!

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