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Total Air: Blog

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A/C is Blowing but Not Cooling? That’s a Problem in This Heat!


Few things are worse this time of year than an air conditioner that’s not cooling. There could be many reasons why this is happening but it’s hard to diagnose through the Total Air blogspot.

Here are a few things you can do to troubleshoot your HVAC system if your AC is not blowing cold air. While it’s always wise to contact your Total Air professional for service and repairs, you may be able to try these steps yourself to see if your HVAC system starts to work properly. Identifying the potentially serious problems though requires your contractor help.

There are some relatively common reasons your AC may have stopped blowing cold air, including:

  • Power issues
  • Thermostat issues
  • Clogged filter
  • Ice buildup
  • Bad compressor
  • Low refrigerant levels

Fixing some issues on your own remains an option. But again, most are easily repaired by a qualified HVAC technician.

Power Surges

Air conditioners use large amounts of power causing some to surge, especially in the hottest days/weeks/months of the year. Your HVAC unit might have blown a fuse or tripped a breaker. First, turn off the A/C at the thermostat and then check your breaker. Turn ON the breaker. Wait 10 minutes and then turn on the A/C to see if it starts to cool. For a fuse replacement, call a Total Air technician to make sure you replace it with the right one for your system.

Thermostat issues

Thermostats have about a 8-10 year life. They go bad over time. Replace your thermostats if setting it at the desired temperature set point to cool your home doesn’t do the job. Also, check the batteries. It may be that they simply need replacing.

Filter is Clogged

Air filters are the number one cause of HVAC system failure but they are the easiest DIY task that is associated with your unit. Some AC units have a built-in mechanism that shuts the unit down if the filter is clogged. This is to prevent damage to the motor and overheating. It could also be that the filter is so clogged that it’s not allowing for adequate airflow. Check your unit’s filter and replace it if necessary.

Ice Has Built Up

Dirty or clogged filters can result in poor airflow or a lack of refrigerant. This can cause your HVAC system to freeze up. Try replacing your air conditioner’s air filter and shutting off the system for a day (to thaw it out) to see if this is the problem. If there is ice buildup, you’ll need to run the unit with just the fan in order to melt it off. If that doesn’t get the unit blowing cold air again, it could be refrigerant levels are low and you need to call a Total Air technician to repair it.

Condensate Switch has Tripped

Some air handlers contain an safety float switch that trips and shuts off the unit when the drain pipe backs up with water. If you check and find that the switch has tripped, it must be reset after the condenser drainpipe has been cleaned.

Refrigerant is Low

Coolant doesn’t usually deplete itself. A common reason for a lack of cold air is often a refrigerant leak. Slow leaks can cause refrigerant levels to drop over time, which requires a check of the lines, and a recharge of the system in order to get it blowing cold air again. This should be done by a Total Air technician due to the dangerous chemicals involved.

As with all things in life, the old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is true when it comes to your air condition system as well. By getting regular maintenance on the HVAC system, you’ll experience less cooling problems in the heat. Best of all, your air conditioning system will last longer.


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