Problems with air-conditioners seem to occur at the most inconvenient of times. Often it is due to the unit being pushed beyond its capabilities. Due to many AC units breaking down during hot summers, the demand for air conditioner repairs has grown in the last decade. However, spotting problems with an AC unit can be difficult to identify, especially if you don’t know how to identify them. The following guide presents several tell-tale signs that immediately warrant AC maintenance and repairs.

1. Faulty thermostat

The thermostat is considered the brain of the AC unit. It communicates with the AC, letting it know about the amount of cold air required in the room. It also measures the temperature to notify the user. An indication that the thermostat is not working properly can be when the AC unit runs for small periods and shuts itself off. A trained HVAC specialist is required to solve issues related to thermostats.

2. Vents not working

Weak airflow is another problem that AC units run into. While cold air still enters the home, it comes out very weakly, making it impossible to circulate through the room. This can be an indication of a failed compressor or a problem with the ducts. It is best to contact an HVAC technician for a tune-up.

3. Noises and odour

While the AC unit is still running, if you hear grinding, scraping, and squealing, it may be a sign that some components have gotten loose. Additionally, if the AC unit is emitting bad smells, it may be an indication that there is a burned-out wire inside the unit.  On the other hand, the buildup of mould can result in a musty smell.

4. Freon or water leaks

Any moisture leaking in or around the AC unit should be addressed as it can indicate a refrigerant leak. This is known as Freon, which is poisonous. In less serious cases, the moisture might just be water produced from a broken or blocked tube. In any case, you should always contact technicians if you detect it earlier on.

5. Rising utility bills

One of the easiest ways to identify whether there is a problem with your AC unit or not is to check the electricity bill for any changes. If you realize that the bill increase hasn’t occurred because of extra usage. The source of the problem can be a broken thermostat switch, leaks in the ductwork, or simply the age of the unit.

6. Lifespan is over

AC units that are at least ten years old are at risk of breaking down. Depending on the brand, it may start exhibiting malfunctioning features at the tail end of its lifespan. It is generally a good idea to get the unit checked when it is a decade old.


AC units are one of those appliances which run almost on a 24/7 basis. They are prone to failure which makes professional maintenance a very important aspect.