10 Common Air Conditioning Problems & How To Fix Them.
Indian summers are extremely hot and humid, especially in Patna, life can be unbearable if your air conditioner goes out. Repairs can be costly, so it’s important to make sure your air conditioner is in tip top shape through regular upkeep. It’s always a good idea to be aware of some of the more common problems that can arise with your air conditioner. So here’s a basic troubleshooting guide to help you find out how to fix your AC.
Troubleshooting AC unit: Top 10 AC problems and solutions
1 Dirty AC filter?
One of the typical reasons air conditioners don’t work properly is clogged or dirty filters. Clean the filter every month, especially if you have pets or if the AC unit is always on! One of the ways to determine if a filter needs to be cleaned is to check if any light passes through it. If not, it’s time to clean it. Dirty filters not only reduce the flow of air but can also cause the AC unit to freeze.
2 Closely located devices?
Devices like television, refrigerator or microwave oven etc. releases a lot of hot air. They impact the cooling efficiency of the air conditioner, making the room more hot than cool. So if they are closely located to your AC unit, it’s time to move them.
3 Incorrect thermostat settings?
Very often, thermostats (which controls the temperature setting in your home) don’t give the correct reading. This usually happen when the thermostat
- Is not clean
- Is not at a level position
- Placed in direct sunlight.
To fix this AC problem, clear your thermostat and check its location. If the problem still continues, call a technician to fix it.
4 The frozen coil?
A frozen coil is one of the most common reasons air conditioners won’t blow cold air. Fortunately, it’s also a problem that can often be solved without having to call for professional help. There are many reasons why your air conditioner coil is freezing up:-
- Airflow is restricted (usually from dirty filter)
- AC is low on refrigerant
- Temperature outside is too low – usually happens overnight
- Broken parts
Turn off the AC and set the fan to run (usually “auto”) on the thermostat to melt the ice around the coil. Check the air filter for dirt and debris.
5 Unit cycles on and off – short cycling?
When your air conditioner repeatedly starts and stops every couple of minutes, the culprit could, unfortunately, be one many things. The problem could be as simple as a bad thermostat, dirty filter or refrigerant leak. Or, it could be a more structural issue- your thermostat placement could be causing the problem, or the AC system itself is simply too large for your home or place of business.
This is often closely related to the causes of a frozen air conditioner, so take the same measures to attempt to resolve the problem.
It’s becoming a broken record, start by cleaning or replacing the filter. This is the most common cause for air conditioner problems. Same goes for a refrigerant leak. Simply topping off your Freon doesn’t solve anything. You need to find the leak and fix it. Well you don’t need to find that we are here to help you out with that.
6 Air conditioners blow hot air?
It’s a summer day, and you’ve just discovered that your AC unit is blowing hot air. Before doing anything else, check your thermostat. Make sure you haven’t accidently left or set it on “heat” or ”fan”. Putting it on “cool” or “auto” should fix your problem. This is a common accident that can be caused by a simple slip or bump of your finger. But if it’s still pumping out hot air, now it’s time to contact the professionals.
7 Water Leakage issue?
In cool weather—usually, 60 degrees or less—an air conditioner can freeze up, causing the unit to leak water when it melts which is also normal. If it’s leaking in other circumstances, try cleaning or replacing your air filters. If that doesn’t fix the problem, schedule a service call. You may need more refrigerant, have a blockage in your drain pipe, or have a broken condensate pan.
8 AC unit won’t turn on?
When your air conditioner fails to start and the blower motor won’t fire up, there could be a number of problems with your unit. It could be as simple as a tripped breaker. Check your breaker panel.
Your A/C unit likely has two different breakers, one for the condenser and another for the fan. If it’s tripped halfway, turn it all the way off first and turn it back on. If the breaker continues to flip when you attempt to start the unit, the breaker could be faulty and need replacing.
The overflow shut-off switch could also be the source of the problem. Either a clogged drain line has set off the switch and killed power to the unit, or the switch itself has gone bad. Ensure the drain line or hose is unclogged and working as it’s supposed to.
Beyond that, faulty or damaged wiring could be the reason. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, this is likely isn’t worth tackling on your own. Consult a profession if the problem persists.
9 AC smells weird?
When water collects in your air conditioning unit’s HVAC box, bacteria builds up and can cause a foul odour that resembles the scent of urine or vinegar. When you turn on your a/c in these conditions, it can leave your whole house smelling fresh in the worst way. The problem could be leaking antifreeze, a nest of wild animals, an old filter, or a sneaky pet.
First, check to see if there is any damage to the outside of your unit. Has any animal gotten in? Does your pet have easy access to it? Look at your filter—it might need to be replaced. If you can’t find a solution for your smelly air conditioner, you might have a leak and you will need it fixed as soon as possible. Call a professional to get it fixed.
10 Does the air conditioner make noise?
Do you hear a buzzing sound when you turn on the thermostat?
Try switching the thermostat HEAT/COOL switch to OFF. Then switch the fan switch from AUTO to ON. The fan (only) should come on. If the air handler makes a buzzing sound, it probably has a bad fan relay or, more likely, blower fan.
If the outdoor AC unit makes a buzzing sound, as though it wants to turn on but can’t, the run capacitor may be defective. If that capacitor goes bad, the motor will overheat when it tries to turn on but can’t get started. When the motor overheats, a thermal overload switch will shut it off. This indicates that the capacitor is bad and needs to be replaced.
This air conditioner troubleshooting guide covers the top 10 AC problems people face. For other major issues it’s best to contact an AC repair service professional. Let trained, trusted, and qualified specialists from Aidhive Workshop take care of the issues related to your split AC, while you sit back and relax after a hectic day at work.
13 Ways to improve the efficiency of your Refrigerator and Freezer.
While your refrigerator may be one of the most used appliances in the home, this appliance also uses more energy than virtually any other home appliance. While most people will agree that getting rid of the refrigerator is not an option, there are a few things that you can do in order to make your refrigerator more efficient, and it doesn’t involve buying a whole new machine.
Improving efficiency is relatively simple, all you need to do is take the first steps towards making your refrigerator more energy efficient and you will start to see some lower prices on your monthly energy bill.
1. Keep Your Fridge Organize
When you’re able to find things quickly, you don’t have to keep the door open for long. Try to create designated spots for all the foods you buy regularly, so everyone in your household will know where to find things.
To cut down on the amount of time the freezer door is open, consider creating a freezer inventory list that you can stick on the door. As long as you keep it updated, you won’t have to spend a bunch of time digging around in the freezer.
2. Keep the Doors Closed
Do not open the refrigerator too wide and often. When you open the door, you must decide well what you want to take out. It’s easy to get distracted and walk away from the refrigerator for a moment, leaving the door open. But you must know when you open the door once, up to 30 percent of the cooled air dissipates and affects the overall cooling capacity of your refrigerator.
Kindly ensure the door seal of the refrigerator must be properly intact every time. A loose seal allows cool air to seep out, wasting energy and causing your fridge to work harder than it needs to. Clean off all food, dust, dirt and other debris; these items can cause the seal to remain open, letting cold air leak from the refrigerator. The lost air must be replaced, so the refrigerator works harder, using more energy. Clean them about twice a year, using a toothbrush and a solution of baking soda and water. Replace any broken seals.
3. Don’t Store Open Containers
Cover food inside the refrigerator to prevent moisture from causing the compressor to overwork. Make sure liquids have lids and that packages are properly closed.
4. Allow Space for Air Flow
Measure the space between the refrigerator and the counters, cabinets or surrounding walls. There must be a 2-inch clearance around the appliance, including the sides and back, to allow the heat generated from the compressor and coils to escape. Without that space, the heat would make it difficult to cool the refrigerator interior and could cause the refrigerator to break down from overheating.
5. Proper Cleaning of Refrigerator
Clean your refrigerator properly and neatly once every 3-4 months. Take away all the food from the refrigerator. This may allow you to wash all the inside corners and crevices. Take away all refrigerator drawers/shelves and soak in warm water mixed with dishwashing soap. Use a mixture of warm water and detergent to wipe the inside. Use baking soda to get rid of stubborn stains.
6. Choose or upgrade to an energy-efficient model
This might seem like stating the obvious, but refrigerators have come a long way in their evolution in terms of energy efficiency. A highly-efficient model from 5 or 10 years ago could easily be costing you twice more to run than a newer model. If your refrigerator is well into its years, it might be worth considering an upgrade.
As you’re looking for a new fridge, pay attention to its physical as well as technological features. Frost-free, freezer top and freezer bottom models are generally more energy-efficient than multi-door models. This is especially so if you’re not going to be able to keep a large fridge stocked.
7. Tidy up Your Condenser Coils
The condenser coils of your refrigerator remove warmth from the unit. If these large coils on the back or underside of your fridge start to get dusty, it becomes difficult for them to continue operating in the efficient manner in which they were designed. If these coils are working twice as hard as they are meant to, it causes heightened energy consumption that could eventually lead to problems for your appliance down the line.
Just remember, it’s best to unplug the appliance when cleaning the coils, and a vacuum or brush is the best tool for the job. You don’t have to clean the coils often, just enough to prevent build-up that affects the unit’s performance.
8. Cool Off Your Leftovers
Even the smallest details can save you a great deal of money on your next energy bill. By allowing your leftovers time to cool down after a meal, you are reducing the amount of heat added to the interior of your appliance. You should also properly store your food in protective wrapping or Tupperware prior to placing your dish in the refrigerator as it prevents any residual heat from escaping into your unit. Some worry that leaving food out gives it a chance to spoil but allowing leftovers to reach room temperature before putting them in the refrigerator is perfectly safe.
9. Move Your Refrigerator Away From All Heat Sources
Avoid placing your refrigerator next to the oven, dishwasher, or a heat vent. Also, avoid placing it near a window. All of that extra heat will cause it to run more frequently, which will add to your utility bill, and wear out your fridge sooner.
10. Don’t Store Stuff on Top of the Fridge
Placing cereal boxes and other junk on top of your refrigerator could block heat from escaping, and cause the compressor to work harder than it’s supposed to–that’s not good for your electric bill or the lifespan of your fridge.
11. Keep your fridge full
Well, as much as you can, at least. A fuller fridge has less air to keep cool, so doesn’t have to work quite as hard as a sparsely populated appliance. When sufficiently loaded, items help keep each other cool. You should be able to keep your refrigerator at least 2/3 full. If your fridge is too big, add jugs of water in both compartments. However you never want an overstuffed refrigerator, as it can decrease your appliance’s efficiency.
12. Check the temperature
For energy savings and food safety, experts state that the ideal home refrigerator/freezer temperature is 37-40 degrees for the refrigerator and 5 degrees for the freezer. If you have a separate freezer, it should be 0 degrees.
13. Defrost regularly.
Manual defrost models use less energy than automatic defrost; however, in order to keep them running at maximum efficiency they should be defrosted regularly. When ice builds up inside the unit, it causes the compressor to run longer in order to keep the unit cool. This increases energy use.
Taking the time to make these small changes can result in a big impact in your monthly bills, as you still get to enjoy all of the perks of your favourite kitchen appliance.
How to maintain your microwave oven
Microwave ovens have become a necessity in every home today due to our busy lifestyles. We often use it to preheat or defrost food and drinks, as well as cook dishes. Unfortunately, the way you use and care for your microwave can have a significant effect on its longevity. The good news is that a few good habits can make a substantial difference. On average, microwaves typically last between 5-10 years, and you can expect a similar — or even better — lifespan from yours if you start doing the following things.
1 Keep It Clean
The simplest way to keep your microwave running for longer is to clean it once a week. Spills and messes are given when you use a microwave. When it does happen, wipe it up while it is still warm to make your clean-up easier. Left-over food absorbs the microwave’s energy when you turn it on again. As a result, it creates a hotspot that can damage it. Plus, they leave an unusual odor if not regularly cleaned.
A weekly cleaning session may hardly take 10 minutes and can easily be done using some warm water, liquid soap, a sponge or clean cloth (Avoid using abrasive cleaners, which can scratch the finish). Dip the sponge/cloth in the solution and clean the microwave from the inside and outside.
The other option is to use vinegar or lemon. All you need to do is, place a bowl of vinegar with 1 tsp of white vinegar in the microwave oven and turn on the microwave for a minute.
If you do not have vinegar, you can put two halves of a cut lemon on a microwave-safe plate with some water and run the microwave for a minute. Next, turn off the microwave, unplug it, remove the turntable and wash it. Using a paper towel, clean the insides.
If the food stains are stubborn, you can heat a cup of water in the microwave for 2 minutes. Once the steam helps loosen the grime, clean it with a cloth. You could also dip the sponge in some lemon juice with vinegar and clean the insides.
Once cleaned, unplug the microwave and keep the door open for some time until it is completely dried up.
Be sure to clean the exterior, too, but be careful and don’t let water or liquid cleaners get between the touchpad and the machine. Remember to clean the turntable and door glass, and check underneath periodically for fallen food particles.
2. Prevent Door Damage
Microwave doors are the most widely abused part of the microwave. Slamming the door and opening the door while the microwave is still on will cause gradual damage to the unit and can result in an unaligned door. The microwave door works off of interlocking switches that are complex and can be easily damaged by carelessly opening and closing the door. These interlocking switches make the oven turn off when you open the door. Having a misaligned door or other door damage can cause these interlocking switches to malfunction and blow safety fuses that are in place to protect other more valuable components of the microwave running.
3. Avoid Running on Empty
When you turn on your microwave a magnetron sends electromagnetic radiation, or microwaves, into the food or liquid to warm them up. When you turn on the microwave without any food or liquid inside it those electromagnetic waves have nothing to absorb, and the magnetron reabsorbs the microwaves which can cause damage to it and your microwave as a whole. It is also a good idea to use the pre-set times to cook or thaw foods. These pre-set buttons can help make your microwave run more efficiently. Understanding the different pre-sets and different wattage will cook your food better. The pre-set buttons on your microwave are unique settings to cook your food without you having to set the time or wattage level. For example, your popcorn setting will cook the best popcorn because the microwave sensor will detect the amount of humidity from the popcorn bag and set the time accordingly.
5. Respect Weight Limitations
Usually, there is no need to worry about the microwave’s weight capacity as most dishes and food items are within their capacity. But sometimes while microwaving large frozen items and heavier dishes, you should check the weight capacity of the unit.
The information is available on the microwave door, online, or in the user’s manual.
An extremely heavy item could mechanically strain the turntable and motor and leave it damaged.
6. Choose Dishware Carefully
Materials that are not microwave safe can cause fires or explosions, so for the sake of safety and the longevity of your microwave, you should only use microwave-safe dishware. You should never put the following items into a microwave:
Dishware with silver or gold accents
Typically, ceramic, glass, and plastic items are safe to microwave, but there are exceptions. Instead of making assumptions, look for the microwave-safe label on a piece of dishware.
7. Know what shouldn’t be going in
Knowing what food shouldn’t be going into the microwave can really prevent disasters in the kitchen. If you want to keep your microwave safe, avoid putting these things into your microwave:
Paper bag – they can release toxins that could potentially catch fire.
Boiling water – Extremely high temperatures in the microwave can superheat the water and either lead to an explosion or leave the microwave damaged.
Boiling egg – if you want hard-boiled eggs, boil them on the stove and not in the microwave or it can be a complete mess. The high temperature can cause the eggs to explode.
8.Placement is important
Most microwaves in India are countertop designs that cannot be fitted inside a cabinet. They have vents on the top and/or on the sides for effective discharge of heat. Therefore, there are multiple considerations when you are placing a microwave in the kitchen.
The body of your microwave heats up when you use it, and the vents you see on top or on the sides are used for dissipating the heat. To do that effectively, the microwave needs to be placed in a location that has ample space around the appliance.
If you keep the microwave too close to the wall, the heat dissipation is not done effectively anymore, resulting in a microwave that takes longer to cool down after cooking, or overheating during the cooking process.
Did you know that using the pre-set cooking times on the touchpad can actually help your microwave work more efficiently and save energy? It can also help you avoid cooking accidents. Use the pre-set times when thawing foods, too.
Know When to Call for Help
Apart from routine cleaning, you should not attempt to repair any part of the microwave oven yourself. It is important to remember that microwave ovens use complex electrical systems and store large amounts of power. The capacitor in a microwave oven may even maintain a large charge after the microwave has been unplugged. This means that you should never try to repair any electrical microwave parts on your own — you may cause additional damage or seriously hurt yourself. Instead, call a professional to inquire whether it would be worth repairing or just replacing the unit.
Keeping your microwave and other appliances in good working order are easier than you think! Check out our blog posts to find other articles on how to take care of your home’s appliances, and if you need professional help for your home appliances call team Aidhive for assistance. We will be happy to help!