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Why Is My Air Conditioner Blowing Hot Air?

There is no more obvious warning sign that something has gone wrong with an air conditioning system than warm air wafting from the vents instead of the crisp, cold air necessary to overcome a Southern California summer day. Should your AC suddenly lose cooling power, you should never wait for it to “get better.” Air conditioners are technically advanced, but they cannot self-repair—at least, not yet. If you cannot find a simple reason for the problem (see below), then contact a professional HVAC service company for assistance.

No matter the time of day, you can reach Mediterranean Heating and Air Conditioning, Inc. for speedy and skilled assistance. We have more than four decades of experience solving homeowners’ comfort problems with excellent air conditioning service in Woodland Hills and throughout Southern California.

Reasons your air conditioner may blow only hot air

  • Thermostat issues – Check the thermostat first before taking any other action. Often, a simple incorrect setting or mistake with programming lurks behind an AC behaving in ways it shouldn’t. If your air conditioning system is a heat pump that can also provide warmth, check that you haven’t accidentally set it to heating mode. Your thermostat may also have a malfunction in it, such as a miscalibration that reads the incorrect temperatures or a wiring problem preventing it from turning on the compressor. These latter problems require trained work to fix.

  • Seized or failed compressor –The compressor in the outdoor unit provides the energy to the refrigerant that sends it through the heat exchange cycle. Essentially, the compressor is the “engine” of an air conditioner, and should it malfunction, cooling will vanish. A compressor can become tight and eventually seized, stopping its mechanical parts from moving. Often, technicians can get the compressor moving again. However, if the compressor burns out entirely, it may need replacement—and sometimes this requires replacing the whole air conditioner.

  • Loss of refrigerant – The chemical refrigerant (sometimes called “Freon”) that courses through the AC moves heat from inside the house to the outside. Refrigerant remains at a set charge (level) and doesn’t dissipate during the evaporation and condensation phases. However, it can start to lose its charge from leaks, and as the charge depletes, the air conditioner will have trouble absorbing sufficient heat, eventually leading to the end of its cooling ability. Refrigerant loss is serious, since it will cause frost along the evaporator coil, and the drop in pressure inside the system could cripple the compressor. If you see ice on the coils or hear a hissing sound in conjunction with the drop in cooling, call for repairs without delay.

There are other possible causes for cooling loss, ranging from fan dying motors to ductwork leaks in warm parts of the house. Don’t try to diagnose the problem on your own beyond the thermostat.

Call Mediterranean Heating and Air Conditioning, Inc. and let our air conditioning experts in Woodland Hills, CA put their experience to work for you.

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