Furnace Fiascos Avoided

Does Your Air Conditioner Need A Refrigerant Recharge?

When your air conditioner is not cooling like normal, the refrigerant could be low. An HVAC system needs the refrigerant to cool the coils and produce cold air for your house. As time passes, the refrigerant could leak, which means you need it recharged. Here are some tips so you can know for sure if you need a refrigerant recharge.

You Cannot Hear the Clutch

In addition to an air conditioner not cooling properly, you also know there is an issue when you do not hear the clutch turn on. When you turn the thermostat down, you typically hear a click, which indicates the air conditioner is on. When the air conditioner is running correctly, the clutch engages from the pressure switch, which displays the pressure levels within the system. If the refrigerant leaks, the switch does not engage, preventing the air from getting cold.

There Is Visible Refrigerant

Another obvious indication is when you can see the refrigerant leaking from the system. This is a very concerning problem that needs immediate attention. Refrigerant looks like a grease-like substance built up on the components of the HVAC system. The refrigerant can also gather into a pool under the system. If you see a leak of refrigerant, you need to call your HVAC technician right away. Not only will your air conditioner not work, but the refrigerant is also extremely toxic to anyone or anything it comes into contact with. If your pet or your small children accidentally ingest the refrigerant, it can be deadly. The refrigerant can also leech into groundwater and into your soil.

You Notice Ice on the Unit Inside

Another reason why your air conditioner is not cooling is due to ice buildup on the interior of the inside unit. The refrigerant will freeze any component it comes into contact with. The refrigerant is designed to stay inside the coils to help cool the air. When the refrigerant gets onto the exterior of the coils, it can freeze them and cause them to seize up and not function.

A healthy air conditioner should not leak refrigerant, but it can happen without proper maintenance. The best way to avoid the need for a refrigerant recharge is to have your system maintained a few times a year, particularly before the spring and summer months begin. If you do not address the problem, the refrigerant will eventually leak out completely.

For more information on air conditioning replacement, contact an HVAC contractor.