When the heat of summer seems to scorch everything outside from the cement sidewalk to the wilted flowerbeds, you’re so happy to have a place to escape into the cool of an air-conditioned house. But if you notice that your air conditioning unit is running 24/7, there is a problem. And that problem is costing you money in terms of a higher power bill. Here’s how to troubleshoot the problem.

How an Air Conditioning System Works

Air conditioning was invented in 1902 when inventor Willis Carrier demonstrated that by blowing air past cold copper tubing that cold air could be concentrated in a single area. A home’s air conditioning works the same way. On top of a furnace sits a metal box with an air conditioning coil inside. The coil is a series of copper pipes that refrigerant moves through, making the copper pipes very cold. When you adjust the temperature on the thermostat on the wall of your house, the blower motor inside the furnace starts to blow. Then the air is sent past the coil, and cold air is sent through your house.

The other part of a home air conditioning system is the air conditioning condenser, which sits outside next to the house. The refrigerant used to make the air conditioning coil cold is transferred back and forth from the coil to this condenser.

Test the Thermostat

If your air conditioning is not turning off, first check the thermostat. If you want to see if you can fix this, you can do this step yourself. Or have an AC repair company in Loganville, GA, come to the house. If you’ve added a new smart thermostat that connects to your cell phone, most likely the thermostat is not the issue. But if you have an older thermostat, perhaps the circuitry has worn out, and no matter how you adjust the thermostat, a signal is being sent to the air conditioning system to continue to produce cold air. To test this, set the thermostat well above room temperature. Give it a minute and see if the air conditioning turns off. If nothing happens, you need a new thermostat. Or, this is the best place to start. A standard programmable thermostat costs around $30 to $40 at your local hardware store.

Dirty Air Conditioning Coil

If you don’t change your air filter on a regular basis, dust, dirt, and debris are circulating through your air conditioning system. This means the air conditioning coil is likely to get covered in dirt and grime. When this happens, the air conditioning system will not work properly. This can also mean that your air conditioning system must work harder to cool down to create cold air and maintain the right temperature. This is where an AC repair service call is needed. A technician has the tools to access the coil and clean away the dirt and grime, leaving the coil as good as new.

Need Refrigerant

Another problem could be that your air conditioning is continuously running, but no cold air is coming through the system. If you haven’t had your air conditioning system serviced in a while, you could be low on refrigerant. Refrigerant moving back and forth from the air conditioning coil and condenser outside is what produced the cold. If refrigerant has leaked out from one of the lines or the condenser, there is nothing to make the cold air. A technician can test the pressure in the refrigerant lines and seal any leaks. They will also add new refrigerant to make sure your system is running on the appropriate levels.

For more information about reasons why your air conditioning won’t turn off, call Triad Mechanical at 770-682-0075.