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Unexpected Symptoms of Neglecting Air Filter Replacement

man-holding-air-filterWhen a homeowner is learning about their air conditioner, there’s a lot of information to take in: refrigerant coils, compressors, thermostat programming. It’s no surprise that the air filter—the most ordinary piece in the entire system—becomes less than the top priority. Yet, a neglected air filter can quickly become a top priority when it’s making your air conditioner flip out.

A neglected air filter can create some seriously alarming symptoms, so make sure you start by getting it replaced if you notice any of the following:

Short-Cycling

Short-cycling is one of those things that could be either the worst thing or barely anything at all.

The worst thing could be that your air conditioner is too large. This happens when an HVAC technician or salesperson doesn’t properly calculate how much power it will require to cool your home. A too-large air conditioner will cool the home so fast that it tricks the thermostat into thinking the ideal temperature has been reached (thus signaling the AC to turn OFF). Within a few minutes, the cool air dissipates, and the AC is back ON again!

Not only is this stressful for the AC’s parts, and not only will it spike your energy bill, but it will prevent your home from ever getting properly cooled in the first place.

In the other case, it could simply be a clogged air filter. This will prevent proper airflow, create excess pressure on your compressor or blower motor, and lead to short-cycling.

Frozen Coil

While short-cycling doesn’t pose a direct threat to your air conditioner, frozen coils are a different story.

It will most likely start with you being unable to feel cool air from your AC. When you go to check your indoor unit, you’ll find that the evaporator coil has become caked in frost. There’s a possibility that this is due to a refrigerant leak, and that’s reason enough alone to immediately call for air conditioner repair service in Colorado Springs, CO. Refrigerant leaks can cause serious damage to your system, so your best bet is to turn it off and wait for repairs.

A clogged air filter can also cause a frozen coil. By blocking the flow of air to the evaporator coil, it can simulate the symptoms of a refrigerant leak. Refrigerant leaks can be hardly noticeable by an untrained eye, so we still strongly recommend getting the entire system checked even if an air filter seems to be the reason for it.

Warm Air Flow

Is your AC blowing warm air or no air at all? This is a generic problem that can be due to many things. Of course, an air filter can be one of them.

If you’re having air flow issues, make replacing the air filter the first step. You might find that the problem immediately improves. If not, there are too many possibilities for what it could be that we suggest turning off the AC until a repairman can have a look.

Changed the air filter but still not sure what’s causing your AC woes? Contact Happy Heating & Cooling today to schedule a service!

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