You’re proud of your office in Petaluma, and you’ve put a lot of work into making it a safe and productive space for your employees. You might even have managed to make the office kind of fun! At the very least, one thing every office should be is comfortable. However, keeping a consistent level of comfort in your Petaluma office can be easier said than done, especially if the space becomes too hot. Petaluma summers can be quite uncomfortable if you don’t have a source of relief from the heat, and that discomfort can affect productivity in your office significantly. For that reason alone, it’s worth making sure the air conditioner in your office is always functioning properly—but what do you do if you find yourself in a situation where the AC has stopped working? Well, firstly you should read this guide.
We’ve seen more than our fair share of air conditioners that weren’t working the way their owners expected, so we understand what the most common causes of AC failure in Petaluma are and how to prevent them. Moreover, we know what to do if one of these issues arises during a time when you can’t afford not to have a working air conditioner in your office. We hope that sharing our knowledge with you can allow you to enjoy more reliable cooling this spring and summer.
Finding Out Why the AC Stopped Working: The First (and Most Important) Step
Before you do anything else, it is essential that you understand why the air conditioner is no longer functioning the way you expect. Here is a list of common reasons for an air conditioner to fail or misbehave:
- Poor Airflow: one of the most common reasons for an air conditioner to break down is that not enough air is moving through the system. Air conditioners are designed to provide a certain amount of cool air for every square foot of the building in which they are installed, and they receive feedback on this from the thermostat. What that effectively means is that your air conditioner will keep working harder to cool the space until the thermostat tells it that goal has been achieved.
Consider the following situation: let’s say that there is a blockage in one of the ducts that’s preventing the usual amount of fresh air from moving into the building. As a result, the thermostat will not register the change in temperature necessary for the air conditioner to turn off. The system is producing the right amount of cool air—it just isn’t making it into your office. Your air conditioner doesn’t know that, so it will continue to drain power, wasting money and ultimately overworking itself. When this occurs, the air conditioner will run, but the office won’t feel comfortable at all. If the problem persists long enough, core components such as the compressor can wear themselves out prematurely. Prevent such problems by changing your filters each month and cleaning your ducts every 2-5 years.
- Leaking Refrigerant: refrigerant is the chemical in your AC that makes the cooling process possible. When there isn’t enough coolant in the system, it will overwork itself in an attempt to compensate. The first thing you will notice is a lack of efficiency—your utility bills will begin to rise. Eventually, your system may fail altogether.
- Thermostat Problems: because the thermostat is responsible for controlling the air conditioner, a thermostat problem is an air conditioner problem. Faulty electrical wiring, bad programming, or even a simple lack of properly-charged batteries can all prevent your air conditioner from running. Check the thermostat before you look at anything else, and make sure it‘s operating as required. If not, you may need to call an electrician (or an HVAC technician certified to work on thermostats).
- General Negligence: negligence can cause all sorts of problems in your air conditioner. If you do not perform regular maintenance, you might end up with debris blocking your ducts, dirt coating your evaporator coils, sludge obstructing your condensate drain lines or any number of other problems.
Calling a licensed contractor is usually the best way to deal with a situation when it has grown out of hand, but it’s even better to prevent trouble before it starts. Keep this guide handy and use it if you ever discover that your AC has stopped working. Hopefully, that won’t be a problem now that you understand how to prevent some of these issues from occurring in the first place.