Signs your air conditioner is low on refrigerant
You should look for signs your air conditioner is low on refrigerant. Refrigerant is the blood of your air conditioner. Without enough refrigerant, your a/c system cannot cool your home properly. Not only will you be hot and uncomfortable, but low levels of refrigerant can severely damage your air conditioner. Here are some signs your air conditioner is low on refrigerant:
- House takes forever to cool – If your a/c is taking longer than normal to cool the home, you may be low on refrigerant. Without enough refrigerant, your a/c cannot absorb enough heat to cool the air. You can think of refrigerant like a heat sponge: the smaller the sponge, the less it can absorb.
- Supply vent is blowing lukewarm/warm air – If you’re really low on refrigerant, you will notice that your supply vents are blowing warm air instead of cool air.
- Higher than normal utility bills – Due to a lack of refrigerant, your a/c runs much longer than needed to cool your home, therefore, increasing your energy bills as a result.
- Ice build-up on refrigerant line – If you see ice building up on the copper refrigerant line on your outdoor unit, you may be low on refrigerant. When the level is low, the inside a/c unit’s evaporator coil gets too cold and causes cold liquid refrigerant to flow back into the refrigerant line. This causes the surrounding moisture on the refrigerant line to freeze up. Eventually the liquid refrigerant will make its way to the outside unit’s compressor. This flow-back of refrigerant will damage the compressor. Compressors are extremely expensive to replace. If your unit is out of warranty, you may have to replace the entire outdoor unit to be more cost efficient.
- You hear a hissing/bubbling noise – The only reason you will be low on refrigerant is due to a leak! You don’t use up refrigerant.
If you suspect you have a low refrigerant level (and thus a refrigerant leak) call one of our experienced technicians here at LHT Cooling, Heating & Refrigeration, Inc., to perform a leak search.