After a long day at work, you’re tired, hot, and just want to relax in the comfort of your own home. But what happens if when you open your door, you’re greeted with a house full of warm air?
If your AC is blowing warm air, it’s a sign that something isn’t working as it should be. Luckily, there may be an easy fix you can do yourself.
6 Reasons Your AC Is Blowing Warm Air
Here are some of the most common reasons why your AC is blowing warm air and what to do next.
1. The Thermostat Is On the Wrong Settings
If your AC is blowing warm air, the first thing you should check is your thermostat’s settings because this will be the easiest fix.
It’s possible that someone may have accidentally switched the thermostat to OFF or ON instead of AUTO. Or maybe someone switched the thermostat to HEAT instead of COOL. If your thermostat is set to ON then the fan will blow air throughout your home even when your AC isn’t cooling the air, so be careful to check that this isn’t your issue.
Solution: Ensure that your thermostat is set to AUTO and COOL.
2. Clogged Air Filter
After you ensure your thermostat is on the correct settings, check if your air filters are dirty.
One of the simplest ways to prevent your AC system from blowing warm air is to check and change your air filters regularly. Homeowners often neglect their AC system’s air filters even though they’re one of the most important.
If your air filters are clogged due to excessive dirt, it can cause your AC system to blow warm air or stop blowing air altogether if it gets bad enough. A good rule of thumb is to change your air filter about once a month to keep your air conditioning system in top shape.
A clogged air filter can also lead to other issues that result in your AC system blowing warm air. The excess dirt and dust can start to collect on your AC’s components, such as the condenser coils, making them work harder than they should have to and eventually start to fail.
Solution: Check and replace your AC system’s air filter as needed.
3. Dirty AC Condenser
Your AC condenser is the outside unit that removes the hot air from your home. If your condenser unit is dirty or surrounded by leaves and other debris, it can be hard for the unit to displace the hot air from inside your home. It also means your system isn’t functioning as efficiently as it could be. Cleaning your AC condenser can not only fix your problem now but also result in lower energy bills in the future.
Solution: To clean the condenser, turn off the unit at the thermostat and the breaker. Once the system powers down, remove any debris surrounding the unit and carefully hose down the coils and fins. You may also want to call a local HVAC company to clean inside the unit as part of an AC maintenance tune-up.
4. AC Condenser Isn’t Turning On
After cleaning your AC condenser, double check that the unit turns on. Your AC condenser is also responsible for cooling the air that circulates in your home, so if the rest of your AC system is running while your AC condenser is off, the air won’t be cooled.
Solution: Ensure that AC is set to on at the thermostat, that the breaker wasn’t tripped, or that someone forgot to turn the AC back on at the shut off switch. If your AC continues to trip the breakers or none of those were the issue, you’ll want to have an HVAC company diagnose the issue.
5. Air Duct Leaks
If your air ducts have tears, kinks, holes, cracks, or becomes disconnected, air won’t circulate throughout your home as it should. Hot air can mix in with the cold air when it shouldn’t or the cold air may be escaping into your attic, walls, or crawl space.
Solution: It’s best to have an HVAC professional check your air ducts, as attempting to check yourself can result in further damage to already damaged ducts. An HVAC professional will also be able to tell you if it’s better to try to patch the ducts or replace them.
6. Refrigerant Leak
A refrigerant leak is one of the more serious issues that could cause your AC to blow warm air.
Your AC system uses refrigerant to cool the air and then pumps the cooled air through your home. When refrigerant levels are low due to a refrigerant leak, your system cannot cool as efficiently as it could. If you also notice that your system is starting and stopping frequently, this could be a sign of a refrigerant leak.
Solution: If you suspect your AC is leaking refrigerant, contact an HVAC company immediately. Refrigerant can be dangerous and should be fixed by a certified technician.