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Woman fanning herself with paper because her AC won’t kick on

AC Won't Kick On

If your AC isn’t turning on, try the below tips before calling for professional service. These might help cool things off more quickly.

  • Check your Thermostat. Make sure your thermostat is set to COOL, and the temperature is set at least 5-degrees below the current indoor temperature. A family member may have changed the settings or the thermostat may have been accidentally bumped.
  • If your air filter is covered in dust, this is likely the problem. The filter is suffocating your system, triggering the AC’s self-preservation mode and turning off. Change your filter and see what happens. Also make a note to replace your AC filter every three months.
  • Look for a Blown Fuse/Tripped Circuit Breaker. This often occurs with power surges, and the problem could affect your system in one of two places:
    • The exterior shutoff box fuse. This fuse doesn’t flip, and must be replaced. 

    • At your home’s main circuit breaker. Tripped breakers will show in the halfway position and must be flipped all the way OFF, then back ON. 
      Note: If you flip the breaker ON, but it flips OFF again, your unit may be pulling electricity – a dangerous problem that requires professional attention.

  • See if the Emergency Shut-Off Switch Is OFF. This is usually located next to the outside AC unit in a metal box hanging on your house. If someone has recently worked on the AC unit, they may have accidentally left this switch in the OFF position.
  • Check the Inside Unit’s Power Switch. Sometimes a switch in the air handler closet/crawl space/attic that looks like a light switch can control power to your HVAC; make sure this wasn’t accidentally flipped.
  • Make Sure the Drain Pan & Lines Aren’t Clogged. When your AC system runs, it creates condensation that runs out of your home via a drain line. If the drain pan is full, and/or this line becomes clogged, it will trigger a safety switch, turning off your system. Unclogging with a wet/dry vac or pipe snake and clearing the blockage could easily solve the problem.
  • Look for a RESET Button. Some systems have a RESET switch on the outside unit. You can push this and see if it helps. If yours does not, you can turn off the system at the thermostat, wait 5 minutes and try again. Note that this is only a temporary solution.
  • Look for Icy Buildup. If you see any icy buildup on system components, let it thaw before you try to turn the unit on. The bad news: This can take up to 24-hours. If the coil is clogged by dirt, blocking airflow, it will cause the temperature to drop and freeze up, preventing your system from running. Low refrigerant and improper fan operation can also cause this issue. In any case, if you see it you need to call a pro.

AC Unit Still Not Working? 

After completing the above and your AC unit still won’t kick on, then you need professional service. The Expert Service Professionals at Aire Serv® can help with anytime service. Call us 855-679-0011 or schedule an appointment now.