Beating the Heat: AC Repairs and Maintenance in your Ottawa Home

As temperatures rise in Ottawa, our trusty air conditioners become our best friends, keeping us cool and comfortable indoors. However, just like any friend, they can sometimes act up, leaving us scratching our heads in frustration. In this blog post, we’ll delve into three common AC problems: noisy operation, perplexing absence of cold air and leaking issues. Plus, learn how Ottawa homeowners can take advantage of a free AC tuneup to ensure their air conditioning systems continue running smoothly this summer.

Table of Contents

Why Is My AC So Loud: What's That Racket?

Has your once whisper-quiet AC suddenly transformed into clanks, rattles, and hums? Don’t panic; you’re not alone. Noisy operations is a common complaint among homeowners, and it can stem from various sources within the AC system.

Man and Woman upset at noisy air conditioner in their home

Causes of Noisy AC:

  • Loose or Worn Components: Is your AC making unusual noises like banging or clanking? This could indicate components have become loose. Over time, the mechanical components of your AC, such as fan blades and bearings, can loosen or wear out, leading to noisy operation.
    • Checking for loose components: Turn off the AC unit and visually inspect the fan blades, motor mounts, and any mechanical components for wear, damage or looseness. If you notice any issues or are unsure of these components it’s best to contact a professional to perform a full inspection. 
  • Refrigerant Issues: Low refrigerant levels or leaks can cause the compressor to work harder, resulting in unusual sounds like hissing or bubbling emanating from the AC unit.
    • How to Check: If you suspect your unit has a leak it is best to contact a HVAC professional right away.
  • Dirty Components: Accumulated dirt, debris, or dust in the AC unit can interfere with the smooth operation of moving parts, producing unwanted noises.
    • Maintaining your AC: Keep your AC unit clean by regularly cleaning or changing the air filters, removing debris from around the unit. To clean the exterior of the unit you can use a gentle stream of water to remove dirt and debris. Ensure your AC is off before attempting to clean the unit.

Safety Note

When cleaning your AC avoid using high pressure water or harsh cleaning chemicals as they can damage the unit.

Why Is My AC Not Blowing Cold Air? Troubleshooting the Chill Factor

Picture this: it’s a scorching hot day in Ottawa and you’ve set your AC to full blast, eagerly anticipating a refreshing stream of cool air, only to be met with disappointment as lukewarm air wafts from the vents. What gives? Here are some ways to troubleshoot your AC and why it might not be working.

Woman cleaning dirty air filters in air conditioner

Possible Reasons for No Cold Air:

  • Refrigerant Leaks: Low refrigerant levels due to leaks can impair the AC’s ability to produce cold air, leaving you with warm temperatures indoors. This can also cause the AC to take a long time to cool off.
    • How to Check: If you suspect your unit has a leak it is best to contact a HVAC professional right away.
  • Clogged Air Filters: Dirty or clogged air filters restrict airflow, hindering the AC’s cooling capacity and resulting in reduced cooling performance. This can also lead to moisture buildup, promoting the growth of mold and bacteria which causes unpleasant odors to distribute around your home.
    • Keeping your Air Filters clean: Check and replace your air filters regularly, typically every 1-3 months, or as recommended by the manufacturer. This helps maintain proper airflow and prevents debris from accumulating in the system.
  • Faulty Compressor: A malfunctioning compressor can prevent the AC from adequately cooling the air before distributing it throughout your home.
    •  If you suspect a faulty compressor is causing your AC to blow warm air, contact a professional HVAC technician to inspect the compressor and diagnose any issues. Compressor problems often require specialized tools and expertise to repair, so attempting DIY repairs is not recommended.

Why Is My AC Leaking?

Discovering water puddles around your AC unit can be concerning, but understanding the root cause can help you address the issue effectively:

Underlying Causes of Leaky AC’s:

  • Clogged Drain: The AC’s condensate drain removes excess moisture from the system. Over time, this drain can become clogged with dirt, algae, or debris, causing water to back up and leak into your home.
    • Unclogging the Drain: Locate the condensate drain line and check for any clogs or obstructions. You can attempt to clear minor clogs using a wet/dry vacuum or a pipe brush. However, for stubborn clogs or if you’re unsure how to proceed, contact a professional HVAC technician for assistance.
  • Refrigerant Leak: In some cases, water pooling around the AC unit may indicate a refrigerant leak. If the evaporator coil freezes due to low refrigerant levels, it can eventually thaw and leak water. 
    • If you notice water coming from your unit it is best to contact a professional HVAC technician immediately. 
  • Damaged Seals or Components: Faulty seals or damaged components within the AC unit can also lead to leaks. Cracked drain pans, corroded coils, or loose fittings may allow water to escape and cause damage.
    • Maintaining your AC: Stay proactive with regular maintenance to catch and address any potential issues before they escalate. This can help extend the lifespan of your AC unit and minimize the risk of leaks.

Introducing the Ottawa CoolSaver Program: Your Solution to Misbehaving AC In Your Home

Ongoing AC maintenance can ensure your AC stays in good working condition so you can beat the Ottawa heat all summer long. That’s where the Ottawa CoolSaver program comes into play. Hydro Ottawa and Hydro One have developed the CoolSaver program which offers local Ottawa homeowners a comprehensive and affordable solution to enhance home cooling systems and reduce energy consumption.

We aim to serve Ottawa residents to the best of our abilities. Whether you live in The Glebe, Westboro, Vanier, Barrhaven, Kanata, Greely, Orleans, and Manotick and other participating towns in the Ottawa region you can always rely on Francis for your HVAC needs. With discounts up to $330 on Central Air Conditioner (CAC) Replacements and free AC tuneups until August 31, 2024 the CoolSavers Program helps you beat the heat and trim your energy bills this summer.

How CoolSaver Can Help:

  • Air Conditioner Tune-Ups: Keep your AC running smoothly with regular maintenance and tune-ups, ensuring peak performance and energy efficiency.
  • Central Air Conditioner Replacements: Upgrade to a high-efficiency central air conditioner and enjoy improved cooling comfort while reducing energy costs. 
  • Smart Thermostat Installations: Take control of your home’s climate with smart thermostat technology, optimizing energy usage and maximizing comfort.

Maintaining your AC on a regular basis is essential to its operating abilities and can extend the lifetime of the unit. The Air Conditioner Tune-ups package through the CoolSaver program allows us to keep your AC in tip top shape while you sit back and enjoy the summer. This package includes:

  • Air Filter Replacement
  • Digital Refrigerant Analysis
    • If a low refrigerant charge is detected, residents can opt for a refrigerant top-up
  • Thorough Cleanings
    • Indoor Blowers
    • Evaporator Coils
    • Condenser Coils

Ready to bid farewell to noisy ACs and lackluster cooling performance? Contact Francis Plumbing today to learn more about the CoolSaver program and start enjoying the benefits of efficient home cooling. Ottawa residents take advantage of this deal and let us help you beat the heat quickly and affordably this summer. Offer is available until August 31, 2024.