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The Florida heat can be unbearable some days. So we rely on our air conditioning system to keep us cool. What happens if your air conditioning system can’t handle the heat either? If your AC blows warm air, that may indicate there’s an issue. On a hot day, we want to be comforted by cool air, not to be greeted with a home full of warm air. There could be many reasons why your air conditioner is blowing warm air. Whole-house air conditioning systems have dozens of components that are required to work together in order to provide efficient air conditioning to your home. If one part malfunctions, the entire unit could be compromised. Just because your system is blowing warm air, it doesn’t warrant instant panic.

There are a few reasons and common issues that can explain the change in temperature with your system. Remember, performance and efficiency are the greatest when all refrigerant levels are up to the manufacturer’s specification. Having too little or not enough refrigerant can be harmful to both your air conditioning system as well as the environment.

Common Causes For AC Blowing Warm Air

Check Your Thermostat
Many people confuse the temperature settings on the thermostat. When your AC is blowing warm air, it doesn’t always mean trouble. It is very common to accidentally select “heat” or “fan” while changing settings on your thermostat. When your thermostat displays “ON”, it means the fan is “ON” and constantly blowing, not necessarily meaning that the system is set to “cool”. First, be sure your thermostat is set at “COOL”. This setting will prompt your system to blow cold air throughout your home.

Outside Unit Clogged
Your whole-house AC system is composed of two units; an inside unit (air handler) and an outside unit (condenser). Both units must work together to eliminate and remove the heat that is penetrating your home. For this to happen, the outside unit needs unrestricted air flow. If there are issues with your outside unit, anomalies with the condenser coil can cause your system not to function properly. Check the area around the outside condensing unit. Be sure the area is clean of debris, dirt, leaves, sticks, etc. We recommend that you cut or trim the brushes that are nearby. This includes grass, weeds, tree branches, sticks and other tall bushes. Any restriction of airflow, through the condensing coil, can cause your system to run poorly or potentially fail.

Frozen AC Unit
As uncommon as you may think, an air conditioner is able to freeze. In fact, it can freeze into a solid block of ice. Many people find it had to understand how it could blow be blowing warm air if the system is frozen. The actual frozen component is the evaporator coil. This is what removes the heat from the air flowing through it, thus providing the cool air you feel. Condensation is normally on the evaporator coil, which is the humidity being removed from your home, along with the heat. If a homeowner is attempting to cool their home with a dirty filter, that is restricting airflow, the coil could drop below 32 degrees and start to freeze the moisture (humidity) on the coil. If left unnoticed for any length of time the coil can become a block of ice. Your system can also freeze due to it being low on refrigerant, as refrigerant leaks out it can drop the coil temperature below 32 degrees, throwing off the ratio of cooling, again potentially freezing the moisture on the coil.

Refrigerant Leaks
Leaks are unfortunately a very common malfunction. Refrigerant leaks can be caused by any number of things and in most cases can be fixed. You should always contact AC Today, if you suspect a problem. You should never try to handle or DIY service for your refrigerant as it is very dangerous. Freon coolant, R-22 or R410-A refrigerant, are types of chlorofluorocarbons that will evaporate as a gas if there is a leak in the system. If it leaks into your home, it can cause a variety of health issues, including headaches, minor loss of memory, nausea, and in extreme cases asphyxiation. Since your air conditioner is not consuming any coolant, there is no need for refilling unless there’s a leak. There are hundreds of joints, connections and valves in a standard air conditioner. Over time, these components can have normal wear and tear which could cause them to weaken and a problem to occur.

If any of the above issues happen to you, call AC Today. During our service inspection, we will measure refrigerant levels, inspect all components for proper functioning, and clean the coils. Routine maintenance checks are very important. That is when AC Today’s technicians can minimize or eliminate issues from progressing. It’s not a fun day to be stuck in Florida’s weather without cool air.