Central Air Not Working? 5 Main Causes of Broken HVAC Systems

Having a broken HVAC system in your home or office can be a source of great discomfort and inconvenience. The contractor you get in touch with to repair the system will ask you for full details about the problem. In such cases, you need to be aware of the main causes which can lead to a problem with an HVAC system.

5 Main Causes of Broken HVAC Systems

Wiring Failure

The advantage offered by regular maintenance of your HVAC system is that smaller problems such as wiring failure that may not be immediately visible to the naked eye can be identified and attended to before they cause a breakdown of the entire machine.

A single disconnected wire, either from being worn out or accidentally broken while moving parts of the system can interfere with the machine’s smooth functioning.

Dirty Air Filter

If you do not replace dirty air filters on your HVAC system regularly, large amounts of dirt will remain inside the machine where it can do the most damage. Aside from supplying dirty air to your premises, unclean filters can also greatly reduce the efficiency of your system, and if the harder dirt particles get dislodged from the filters and move towards the machine’s motor, wiring, etc. it can even bring the entire system to a halt until the debris is cleared out.

Broken Thermostat

The thermostat is in charge of regulating the temperature in your home or office by selecting the mode in which the unit will run and cycling the system on and off to maintain the desired temperature.  Over time the calibration of the internal temperature sensor can become inaccurate, causing the space to constantly feel too hot or cold.

Thermostats can also develop wiring failure or burn out after a short circuit. If your broken HVAC system is causing problems, the thermostat is one of the first items you should check and get replaced if necessary.

Leaking Refrigerant

The refrigerant plays a vital role within your system in providing you with cool, dry air.  It is a special gas blend of chemicals, designed to work under extreme pressures.  By compressing the refrigerant and pumping it throughout the system, it is able to absorb the heat from within the home and transfer it outside.  It must remain inside a sealed system.

Over time leaks can occur within the system, causing the high-pressure gas to escape.  This reduces the amount of cold air the system can provide to your home, causing the system to become extremely inefficient, and eventually rendering it completely unable to cool your home.

This loss of gas is also detrimental to the compressor, which relies on the oil in the gas and the cooling of the gas to operate undamaged.  A properly operating system should never need gas.  If you need gas, you have a leak and every time the system runs low damage to the compressor is occurring.  EPA regulations also prohibit the habitual refilling of a system having a known leak.  A proper leak detection should be performed and the cause identified and repaired.  This will save you money in the long run, and prevent premature failure of the system.

Motor Failure

The motors inside an HVAC unit are used to circulate air within the home and remove heat from the refrigerant to the outside.

If an indoor motor fails, air within the space cannot be circulated through the system.  With no air movement over the indoor coil, the unit will quickly “freeze-up” and cause ice to form inside the unit. Besides providing no cool air, continued operation in this state causes damage to the compressor through lack of oil return.

If an outdoor fan motor fails, the hot compressed gas within the system cannot be cooled, thus allowing no heat to be removed from within the home.  This hot gas very quickly builds pressure, often to dangerous levels.  This high pressure can cause leaks within the system and also quick compressor destruction.  Some units have high-pressure sensors that will disable a unit in the state; however, continued restarts, over time will still cause damage.

In any case, all motors are general wear items and over time will need to be replaced.  Having annual maintenance performed allows for these failures to be prematurely identified and avoid costly damage. For proper circulation of air to and from the system, these motors need to be in proper working condition.  If you hear strange noises coming it’s time to call a professional.

Ball Building Services is a licensed and bonded HVAC Contractor with extensive training and experience with system installations. Our technicians have been trained and certified by major manufacturers of air conditioning and heating systems. We serve the Tampa Bay area and Central Florida with fast, reliable service. Contact us today for an appointment for repair of your broken HVAC system.