AC not turning on? Having an air conditioner that won’t turn on isn’t only an inconvenience. It’s downright worrisome: How much will it cost to repair? How long will it take to fix it? Why did it stop turning on in the first place? Is it time to buy a replacement unit?
Before making a long list of things that will likely only cause you even more stress, read below for the most common reasons why an AC won’t turn on.
6 Reasons Your Air Conditioner Won’t Turn On
If your AC is not turning on, take a look at these potential causes to determine the next step.
1. Tripped Circuit Breaker
One of the most common causes of an air conditioner that won’t turn on is a tripped circuit breaker. Sometimes when the circuit overloads, the breaker will trip. A tripped breaker is especially common during the summer months due to rising temperatures.
Solution: To check if this is the cause, go to your electrical panel and find the AC switch. If it is in the “OFF” position, switch it to “ON.”
If this continues to happen, do not keep turning the breaker as this could cause severe damage. When a circuit trips multiple times there could be damage to the electrical unit which can cause a fire.
2. Blown Fuse
The fuse box is located outside your home, close in proximity to the condenser unit.
Solution: Before troubleshooting, shut off power to your AC directly from the breaker panel. Use a multimeter to conduct a continuity test. If there’s no charge detected, note your air conditioner’s make and model and purchase new fuses from any hardware store.
3. Clogged Condensate Line
Over time, mold can grow inside your air conditioner’s condensate line (this is the pipe that connects your AC system’s outside unit to your house).
Solution: To unclog your AC drain line, you’ll need a wet/dry vac to suck out all the sludge.
Once unclogged, you can keep your AC drain line clean by flushing it regularly with distilled white vinegar.
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4. Thermostat Issues
Your AC and thermostat work together to provide cold air to your home. If your thermostat isn’t working, your air conditioner isn’t receiving information to turn on and off.
If you think there is a problem with your thermostat, you can easily troubleshoot it.
Solution: Check the thermostat’s screen to see if the display panel is blank. If it is, check to see if anyone in your home turned it off (you’d be surprised at how often this happens). If the display does not turn on, replace the batteries.
If your thermostat still isn’t working, it may be time for a new thermostat. If you decide to install a new one on your own, remember to shut off power to your AC first. Also, photograph the cabling inside so you can use it for reference when plugging the cables into the new system.
5. Unplugged Condenser Unit
Not all problems require a service call, which is why it’s important to troubleshoot the problem before reaching out to a technician.
Your AC may not be turning on because the condenser unit is unplugged. We know what you’re thinking: “How does that happen?” From animals to lawn service, there are numerous ways your condenser cord can be pulled or damaged.
Solution: Most AC units have a small cord connecting your AC to a panel on the side of your home. Double check this cord is in place and good working order before ruling out this cause.
6. It’s Time to Replace Your Air Conditioner
Ok. No one wants to hear about this one; but the reality is if your AC is between 15 and 20 years, it may have run its course.
Contact Climate Design for AC Service in Clearwater, FL
If your air conditioner is not turning on after troubleshooting, contact one of our HVAC professionals and we’ll be happy to help.
We provide services all over Tampa Bay: Clearwater, Largo, Palm Harbor, South Tampa, St. Pete Beach, Eastlake, Tarpon Springs, Safety Harbor, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch, Palmetto, New Port Richey.
Call (888) 572-7245 to Schedule Your Appointment