Winter may be just around the corner, but if you live in one of the southern-most regions of the US, you may still be enjoying the warm weather. If you are, you're probably still using your air conditioner on a daily basis. Winter or not, when warm weather hits, you need your air conditioner to keep you cool. If it stops running, you'll want to get it fixed as quickly as possible. If the capacitor on your air conditioner goes out, you'll need to have it replaced. Unfortunately, once the capacitor goes out, your air conditioner won't work without it, and it can take a few days to order the part. Luckily, the capacitor will let you know when it's on its last legs. Here are three ways to tell if your capacitor is about to fail you:
Your AC Has Stopped Blowing Cold Air
When the capacitor is about to fail, you may start noticing that the cold air comes in spurts from the vents. You may have cold air for several minutes, and then you'll feel warm air. This may continue in cycles throughout the day. If your AC is only working intermittently, it's a good sign that your capacitor is about fail you entirely. One way to find out is to turn your AC off and on when the temperature is fluctuating. If you immediately get cold air when the AC is turned on, your capacitor is on its last legs.
Your Energy Bills are on the Rise
A malfunctioning capacitor can cause your energy bills to go through the roof. The increase in energy use can be attributed to the extra work your AC will need to do in order to cool your house to the right temperature. If you're worried about your AC, compare your current energy usage to the same period of time in years past. If you're using considerably more energy than you did last year or the year before, your capacitor should be replaced.
Your AC is Off to a Slow Start
When you turn your AC on, it should begin blowing cold air as soon as the motor is engaged. If your AC is slow to start or hums for several minutes before the motor engages, you have a problem with your capacitor. This is particularly true if you need to turn your AC off and then on again to get it to start.
If you enjoy warm weather well into fall, you need your AC to stand up to the challenge. If your capacitor is showing signs of failure, you should have your HVAC technician replace it as soon as possible. Contact a residential ac repair service for more information.