Central Air Problem

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Hi there
My central air unit will work one day, then not another. Or it will work for a while then stop. By this i mean air is blowing out of the the vents, but not cold air. Sometimes it does work however. I have a clean filter and i have tried it on auto and on fan with the same result. I don't understand how it can work one day and not work another. ANYONE know why???
Thank You for your time
Sonia
:)
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It's broke??????
Seriously, without more information, everything would be a guess. Get someone out that can properly diagnose your air conditioning problem and enjoy. :-)
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On Thu, 05 Jul 2007 23:39:04 +0000, sonia.apex wrote:

Hang on, I'll get my crystal ball and get back to you soon.
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I've had good luck throwing a deck of cards into the ceiling fan.
--

Christopher A. Young
You can\'t shout down a troll.
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Just a simple test. I'm assuming this is a 'central air conditioner' and not a window unit.
By not working I also assume it's not cooling. Beside the issue of adequate cooling gas, a common reason for intermittent cooling is a dirty 'A' coil in the plenum. If you have an access panel, that you can open and find the A coil 'iced' up, that means inadequate air is passing through usually due to dirt, dog hair, dust clogging the fins.
A qualified service man will use compressed air and vacuum to clean it.

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THANK YOU SO MUCH I WILL CHECK THAT OUT NOW. IT IS A CENTRAL AIR UNIT AND YOU ARE CORRECT THAT WHAT I MEAN IS THAT EVEN THOUGH AIR WILL COME OUT IT WILL NOT BE COOL AIR. MY QUESTION IS WHERE DO I FIND THIS ACCESS PANEL. IS IT IN THE OUTSIDE UNIT OR THE INSIDE ONE IN THE GARAGE?? THANK YOU SOO SOO MUCH FOR YOUR HELP.
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Bullshit, they normally use a coil cleaner and if it's realy nasty, it gets pulled from the unit to clean it outdoors!
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FireBrick wrote:

Why "assume" when the subject line is "Central Air Problem"???

Jeeze, she said THAT too...

But she said air is blowing out of the vents, didn't she? Will air blow through a clogged or frozen 'A' coil? Please explain yourself....

I've always seen them use a spray-on cleaner.
(Don't listen to this guy, Sonia...)
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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Thank you!!
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I had a brother in law exactly like that. We never did figure out what was wrong with him.
Call an AC company. You may be able to fix what's there and not have to replace the entire thing if you keep running it and fry it.
It's obvious something's wrong with it. Don't run it into the ground. Stop now and have it diagnosed and fixed.
Steve
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On Thu, 05 Jul 2007 23:39:04 -0000, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Do you have a separate circuit breaker for your central AC? Is that breaker on? One winter I turned the breaker off for my AC and forgot to turn it back on the following May and couldn't figure out for about 24 hours why I had moving air that wasn't cold in the house. Then I checked the breaker box, and lo and behold, the AC breaker was off. I flipped it on, and presto, cold air a few minutes later.
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wrote:

Did you miss the part where it works SOMETIMES???????
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On Jul 5, 7:39 pm, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Here's the latest on my problem. It stopped working and checked the indoor and outdoor control panels and nothing was frozen. It doesn't look dirty so would the dirt be internal? Do you think it needs more freon? The outside fan does run and air comes in but just not cold air all the time.
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On Jul 6, 2:14 pm, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Please don't take this the wrong way, but you're so clueless about how your A/C works that you really should call a professional in. Trying to do it yourself, you're just going to break it worse than it already is.
If it needs freon, it has a leak, and any freon you add (provided you manage to add the freon without blowing yourself to kingdom come) will just leak out. A professional has a special dye and tools to detect and fix the leak.
The whole discussion is moot, though. All you keep saying is "IT DON'T WORK." There is no way to diagnose the problem without more information, and even then, there still may be no way to completely figure out what is going on without physically being there.
A little lesson on A/C: Air doesn't "come in." You are not getting cold outside air when you turn on the A/C. The outside unit compresses the freon and cools it. The compressed freon flows to a radiator inside your ductwork in the house, where it is allowed to expand. When it expands, it gets really cold. Your furnace blower sucks air out of your house, blows it through this radiator where it gets cold, then blows it back into your house. The cold air you feel is inside air that has been cooled.
This radiator in the ductwork (called the condensor IIRC) is the part that may be full of crud and/or frozen. Usually it is located near the furnace because that is where the fan is.
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On Fri, 06 Jul 2007 11:30:23 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

It was never the control panels that get frozen, it was the A coil (the evaporator) which is inside the plenum (as they call it, the big duct coming out of your furnace, which may or may not have a cover you can take off to look inside. I had to cut a hole in my duct so that I could look inside. (There are two sides to the furnace, intake and output, and the A-coil is on the output side, all the time afaik, but before you make holes, you should be sure that you are at the right place. If you see two curving pipes going into the duct there, and the other end of the same pipes go out of the house to the outside unit, you're at the right end. But I don't think you want to cut the hole yourself, do you? But if there's a removeable panel, I think that you could do, although I'm not sure what you woudl gain.
(OT for you, but I probably should have made my hole bigger, but I was just trying to find out what happened to the water that condensed, so since I"m a "good boy", I made the hole small. If I ever have to clean it, I guess I'll have a hole around a hole. I don't even remember how I patched the first hole.)

You're right in about all of this, but you shoudl have stopped....
You probably wouldn't make these little errors if you had reviewed this an hour after writing it.

You mean, and heat radiates from it. It's no cooler in temperature than when it came into the outside unit (and I'm pretty sure it's a little hotter.)

It's a lot like a radiator for sure, in that it has fins and transmits heat, except that radiators *radiate* heat, whereas this thing absorbs heat, so I"ll bet no designer or pro would call it a radiator. Still, it might be a good term to use with the OP because a radiator is something she's probably experienced with, from cars.

Not out of the house but into the big duct, which is still inside the house. You know what you mean, but she may run around looking for something out of the house. Well it might be true if your furnace was out of your house, if you count the attic or the garage as out of your house, but even then I think most ducts where cooling is done are in the house.

Doesn't blow it back into the house either, but you call it inside air in the next sentence, which helps.

Called the evaporator. The condensor is in the box outside, with the compressor. If you compress a gas enough, it will turn into a liquid, which is what condense means. The gas becomes hot as you compress it, but cools off almost to the outside temperature, because it is outside.
The easiest way I remember this is that when you take the valve out of tire, or when you release your fingers from a balloon, the air coming out is cool. That's because it's no longer compressed. So the converse is also true and when you compress air or any gas like freon, it becomes hot. (Actually when you fill a tire or some smaller things, you can feel that they become hot, plus the hose from the pump, even a basketball pump.)

Both inside and outside fins can be dirty. Only the inside will be frozen because of lack of freon.

And the ducts, if one has a furnace that uses ducts.
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You should've took your own advice.
"You're right in about all of this, but you shoudl have stopped...."
The compressor compresses the low pressure gas to a high pressure gas. This allows it to reject the heat in which it absorbed. As the heat is rejected the gas is cooled which causes it to condense to a liquid.
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Well, I'm not surprised. :)

I'm not sure what I said that differs from this. I just didn't go into as much detail. And when I rereed, in this part I'm not specifically speaking about an AC condenser anyhow, just about gases and liquids. Applying it to air conditioning was left as an exercise to the reader. :)

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You're right about one thing, she needs to call for service.
However, your description of "How an Air Conditioning System Works" needs some work!
Example, the compressor compresses the low pressure gas to a high pressure gas where it can reject the heat (that it gained from the inside) to the outside as it condenses the high pressure gas to a liquid. The indoor blower moves air across the evaporator where it can absorb the heat from the air, which is then carried to the outdoor unit to be rejected. This process takes place when the high pressure liquid hits the indoor metering device and flashed to vapor. The change of state causes the indoor coil to get cold where it can absorb heat from the passing indoor air.
Condenser is outside Evaporator is inside (for air conditioning)
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Could be a lot of things. Dirt in the coils will affect the operation. Low Freon will too. It is not easily diagnosed no knowing more information. My advice is to call a service technician. Even a simple job like cleaning the fins can damage the unit if done carelessly as they bend very easily.
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You don't have a crystal ball?
Sorry, neither do I.
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