AC Compressor Failure

Common Causes of AC Compressor Failure

The compressor is considered to be the heart of the air conditioning system. Therefore, if it fails, the entire air conditioning system fails. In this post, your local air conditioning installation contractor Sierra Air discusses the common causes of AC compressor failure and how it can be prevented.

What Causes Compressor Failure?

Compression is a crucial stage in the refrigeration cycle. It’s what puts the refrigerant into a very cold state that results in cooled air. The following are some of the most common causes of AC compressor failure:

1. Dirty Coils — Dust, grime and mineral deposits can build up on the condenser coils. When this happens, the air conditioner can’t expel waste heat from the system, which affects its efficiency and can result in overheating and, ultimately, failure.

2. Blocked Refrigerant Lines — Refrigerant lines are tubes that transport refrigerant throughout the air conditioner. When they get blocked, the heating and air conditioning system’s output can be diminished, which can later lead to overheating and compressor failure.

3. Low Refrigerant Levels — Low refrigerant levels are typically caused by leaks in the refrigerant lines. Low refrigerant levels make the compressor work hard just to pump enough refrigerant through the AC unit, which, as you may have guessed, can lead to compressor failure.

4. Incorrect Repair Procedures — One reason why you should leave HVAC repairs to the pros is because improper repairs result in issues such as the incorrect replacement refrigerant being used. A DIYer or inexperienced technician could also end up putting too much or too little refrigerant into the compressor.

How to Prevent Compressor Failure —  Most of the aforementioned causes of AC compressor failure can be prevented by adhering to a regularly-scheduled maintenance routine. Ideally, HVAC systems should be inspected twice a year; once in preparation for the winter season, and again in the summer season. Inspections should be conducted by a certified HVAC technician. Recharging the refrigerant in particular requires precise calculations to avoid putting in too much.

Cleaning the compressor coils also requires correct cleaning procedures to avoid damage to the aluminum fins.

Call Sierra Air for HVAC Maintenance and Installation Services

Sierra Air is your leading provider of heating and air conditioning repair and maintenance services. Fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We serve customers in Reno, NV, and nearby areas.