Quick Fixes for Your Air Conditioner

Man with sweat stains under arms

Fix It In A Pinch

When the AC goes out or begins working less-than perfectly, it can make for a miserable, hot summer day.

As HVAC professionals, we know first hand how complex and intricate your heating and cooling systems are. Repairing and installing them requires hours and hours of training and experience, something the average homeowner has not had.

This is why when there is an HVAC emergency, we recommend calling in the experts for repairs to avoid causing a greater problem or injury to yourself. There are a few exceptions to this rule of ours, however; there are times when the problems are surface level enough that, with a little guidance, you may attempt to fix them on your own!

Read on to learn what these quick fixes are and how you can save the day when the AC goes out!

Check the Breaker

One of the most frustrating air conditioner problems is when the unit won’t even power on. You can quickly become hot, sweaty, and frustrated while trying to solve the issue, so instead, take our advice.

Having several appliances connected to the same breaker can cause it stress. If your AC will not power on, head to the breaker to see if it tripped. If you’re lucky, this will be a quick solution to your AC woes and you’ll be feeling cool again in no time.

Inspect the Thermostat

Your thermostat could be the culprit of your AC breakdown. The solution may be as simple as changing the batteries on your unit, if battery powered.

The last thing you want your air conditioner to do is blow warm air. If this is the case, however, take a look at the thermostat and make sure it is not set to “heat” or “fan”. If it is, set it instead to “cool” or “auto”.

Quick Tip: Did you know your thermostat’s location matters? If it is placed on a wall that gets bathed with sunlight for multiple hours every day, the excess heat could have an effect on your sensor and create inconsistent cooling.

Change the Filter

We cannot stress enough how important your air filter is and, even more so, how important it is to consistently change it. Air filters are responsible for keeping the air in your home clean and free of airborne contaminants. They can quickly become full and clogged, wreaking havoc on your entire system.

If you’re experiencing a lack of airflow, frozen coils, overheating, or a dusty home, the filter is likely to blame. Be sure to change your filter out at least once every three months. If you have pets or live with a smoker or someone with severe allergies or asthma, consider changing them even more frequently.

Clean it Up

When experiencing low air flow, poor air quality, or overall system issues, your unit may improve after a bit of cleaning up! Head outside and carefully remove any debris and dust from the fan blades and condenser fins.

Turn off the unit on your thermostat, then take a soft brush and wipe away any loose dust on and around the unit. Locate the evaporator coils behind the access panel and do the same here. Next, take a coil cleaner from the home improvement store and use as instructed to give the coils a thorough cleaning.


As you learned above, a clogged air filter has the power to freeze up your coils. If you notice ice on your unit, it is best to defrost straight away. Head to the thermostat and purposefully set it to “fan” to melt the ice.

Professional AC Help

While these quick fixes can provide some relief, they can only go so far. If you’re experiencing an air conditioning emergency that requires professional attention, call Patterson Plumbing & Heating, Inc. at (719) 496-4939.

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