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air conditioner not turning on
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Your air conditioner is a vital tool contributing to your overall comfort and well-being. Especially when the heat ascends, a reliable air conditioning unit is your best partner to get through. Yet not all relationships are smooth-sailing. So when you experience your air conditioner not turning on, we know your first response: to panic! But this shouldn’t always be the case.

If you ever find yourself in this situation, calm down and quit the worries first. There could be a lot of reasons behind this disaster. However, it is essential to note that there will always be an accompanying solution to each one. Sometimes, the problem could be quickly addressed on your own or, in some cases, with a phone call away to your trusted AC technician.

To help you figure out why you have an air conditioner not turning on, we rounded up a list of the common reasons below and their possible solutions.

Resource: Why is my air conditioner running constantly?

1. Low Refrigerant Levels 

If your refrigerant levels are running low, it might be the culprit why you have an air conditioner not turning on. 

A deficiency in the refrigerant level affects your air conditioner. Refrigerants are the cooling fluid that rooms in the coils of your AC. They function by ridding heat from the indoor air and transforming it into a cooler one. Refrigerants do not diminish in amount because your air conditioner utilizes them. The most common reason for the levels stooping low might be a leakage in your system. 

A refrigerant leak may be caused by having cracks or holes in the AC coil where they are escaping. If your AC is not having its regular maintenance, corrosion will likely occur. 

Refrigerants can impose a threat to your health. Hence, there is not much that you can do on your own. The levels must also match with the set standard of your air conditioner manufacturer to ensure proper operations. A call to a professional AC technician is necessary to handle the leakage.

2.Problematic Thermostat

Without warning, you suddenly have an air conditioner not turning on. Hysteria fills in, and you start to worry as the heat continues to climb. But have you taken a quick check on your thermostat? 

A malfunctioning thermostat can directly inflict a toll on the performance and efficiency of your air conditioner. Your first step is to check if your thermostat’s display lights up. If it doesn’t, it will not be able to signal your air conditioning unit to turn on the power. Next, see if the batteries are still working (if you have a battery-operated one). If you find that they are working well, proceed to check your thermostat’s function.  

Set your thermostat to 5-6 degrees lower than the temperature setting. Let a few minutes pass by, and then try to feel if the AC vane blows cold air. If it does, then congratulate yourself for solving the problem!

If you’re not lucky enough and you’re still dealing with an air conditioner not turning on, it’s time to check your thermostat’s parts. Turn it off and take the cover down to check its components quickly. Examine if debris is building up and eradicate it using a soft brush. Try to inspect too if it has corrosion or blown fuses. If such is the case, your trusted AC professional should help you on this matter. 

3. Failed AC Capacitor 

If you are dealing with an air conditioner not turning on accompanied by erratic cycles of stopping abruptly, you might be dealing with a capacitor issue. 

The capacitor is an essential component of your air conditioning system. It acts as the bridge connecting to the motor’s circuit. It initiates the push to the engine to allow it to start operating. Once the desired speed is on the course, the capacitor disconnects from the circuit. If you start hearing clicking noises from your AC, it might signal that you are dealing with a dead capacitor. 

But what causes this component to fail? Well, heat is one of the factors. Since the capacitor is sensitive to heat, exposure to it might cause problems. Overheating can result from your air conditioner straining itself to work or having direct sun exposure. It will likely be the case if you have your outside unit up on the roof, especially on sweltering days.  Setting your thermostat to the highest/lowest during the extremes of temperature could also lead to overheating. It causes your air conditioner to overwork, leading to an overheat of the capacitor, and your air conditioner not turning on.

Old age could also be the reason why your capacitor is failing. Like any other part of the AC, it wears down over the years. Hence, a reduction in the energy-releasing ability happens. 

Power fluctuations or outages could also potentially inflict damage to your capacitor. A surge protector must be handy in such cases to ensure you won’t be led to an air conditioner not turning on. 

A dead capacitor problem should be for the professionals. Never try to replace one on your own, as electrical charge can be hazardous. 

Is it time for Repairs or Replacement?

Addressing the issue behind an air conditioner not turning on might be complex. It might not be just one issue that is causing this. Deciding whether to repair the problems or have an air conditioner replacement lies within your cognition. 

A deciding factor that you have to consider will be the advice of your trusted air conditioning technician. Experts know this field way more than you do, so it’s best to consult them on the matter. Ask all the questions that you have and listen to the explanation. Inquire whether they think they can quickly fix the issue or if you have to hop on into purchasing a new unit. 

Another thing that you have to consider will be the cost. If you have an air conditioner not turning on and has multiple reasons why it malfunctions, you will need to spend more bucks. If such is the case, be smart enough to do the math. When it costs you more than getting a new unit, save yourself from the hassle and go for the better option.  

The final deciding factor would be the age of your air conditioner. If it is beyond its average life span of 12 years, it might be time to have your unit retire from service. 

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