Is Your A/C Low On Refrigerant: Warning Signs

a plant on a windowsill San Marcos TX

Keeping your air conditioner on during the hot summer months is an important part of keeping your home comfortable. The best way to detect potential problems is to have an HVAC professional tune-up your unit. However, there are also warning signs you can look for yourself. Below are some symptoms to watch for that might indicate that your unit is low on refrigerant.

Vent Is Blowing Hot Air

One sign that your San Marcos air conditioner might be running low on refrigerant is if you feel warm or hot air coming from your supply vents. If your A/C has low refrigerant, it will have difficulty cooling the air, resulting in warm air being expelled into your home. There are other issues that can cause this as well, such as a dirty outside unit. Be sure to check this before calling a professional to check your refrigerant.

Hissing Sounds

Another sign that your air conditioner may need more refrigerant is if you hear a hissing, or bubbling sound coming from it. Refrigerant lines are pressurized, so if a leak is present in one of them, the escaping refrigerant will make a hissing sound. A leak is one of the most common reasons that your unit might be low on refrigerant, since refrigerant isn’t used up during the operation of your A/C unit. If you hear the sound of a leak, call an HVAC professional to repair your A/C unit as soon as possible.

Ice On The Line

If you notice ice on your refrigerant lines, it’s likely that your air conditioner is low on refrigerant. These lines are meant to be highly pressurized, and when refrigerant is low the pressure is also lowered. This low pressure can result in lower temperatures, causing your A/C unit’s evaporator coil to freeze. This in turn lets liquid refrigerant flow through the line, freezing the moisture there. The result is visible ice along the refrigerant line.

House Won’t Cool

An easy symptom of low refrigerant is your air conditioner not effectively cooling your home. It could be that it takes longer than usual to cool, or that it isn’t cooling at all. Low refrigerant can be the cause of this, but so can several other issues. Double check other potential problems here: Signs Your A/C Might Fail. If your A/C isn’t cooling your home, remember to contact an HVAC professional to help diagnose the issue before attempting a home repair.

High Electric Bills

A final sign that your air conditioner might be low on refrigerant is if your electric bills are higher than usual. Electric bills will often go up in the summer due to your A/C unit running more often than in cooler months. However, if you feel that your bills are higher than normal, compare them to bills from the previous summer. If they are significantly higher, it might be a problem with your A/C. Low refrigerant, as well as other issues, could be the cause of this.

For more information about diagnosing air conditioning issues, or to speak to an HVAC technician, contact AirOne Heating and Air Conditioning in San Marcos, TX.