Skip to main content

Out with the old, in with the fly: Welcome to Dragonfly Heating & Cooling - formerly known as All Pro Air!

Decoding the Signs: When Your Air Conditioner Needs More Than a Filter Change

One of the most important air conditioning maintenance tasks you can do yourself is changing your air filters. Cleaning or replacing filters regularly improves indoor air quality, increases airflow, boosts cooling capacity, lowers energy bills, and prevents breakdowns. But sometimes replacing air filters just isn’t enough.

Below, the experts at Dragonfly Heating & Cooling discuss the key indicators that your HVAC system may need professional attention. If you notice any of these telltale signs, call for assistance as soon as possible.

With summer just around the corner, there is no better time than now to get your AC system up to speed!

4 Signs Your AC Needs Some TLC

Anything out of the ordinary may be a sign that your AC is calling for help — from unusual odors to skyrocketing energy costs. The following are four of the more common signs that your air conditioner needs more than just a filter change.

1. Inadequate Cooling Performance

When your cooling system has trouble keeping up, your first response may be to change the filter. If your air still isn’t getting cold enough despite clean filters, something else is amiss. 

Inadequate climate control in your home could have a wide variety of causes, including the following: 

  • Frozen or dirty coils
  • Blocked condenser unit 
  • Broken heat pump
  • Thermostat problems
  • Refrigerant leaks
  • Compressor issues 
  • Ductwork problems 
  • Improperly sized AC unit
  • Aging air conditioner

With so many potential causes of insufficient cooling, finding the root problem requires a comprehensive examination. At Dragonfly Heating & Cooling, we begin any service call with a thorough inspection and expert diagnostics. 

Once we identify the issue, our team will get you back on track as quickly as possible. Prompt attention to any malfunction will restore optimal AC performance and prevent further damage to your system.

2. Unusual Noises

Nearly all AC units make some kind of noise. But if you hear anything more than the soft wooshing sounds or gentle hum you’re used to, it usually indicates a problem. The following noises suggest the following problems: 

  • Screeching or squealing: Issues with the fan motor, condenser motor, or blower motor can cause your system to squeal or screech.
  • Banging or rattling: Rattling noises often come from loose sticks, leaves, or other debris in the outdoor condenser or loose parts elsewhere in the system.
  • Hissing: Significant air duct leaks, faulty expansion valves, or incompatible air filters can cause a hissing noise.
  • Grinding: The source of grinding noises ranges from loose or worn belts to major compressor problems.
  • Buzzing: Stuck condenser fans, refrigerant leaks, or electrical malfunctions can all cause buzzing noises.
  • Clicking: If you hear more AC clicks than normal, you may have a failing capacitor or malfunctioning thermostat.  
  • Bubbling: Bubbling sounds can indicate excess moisture or water in the drainage line, which can back up into your home.

Some causes of unusual noises are more serious than others. For example, you should never ignore a buzzing sound, because it could indicate a potentially dangerous electrical issue or a refrigerant leak. A loud or disruptive noise of any sort suggests a moderate or severe problem with your air conditioner.

The qualified HVAC technicians at Dragonfly Heating & Cooling can help you diagnose the underlying cause and repair the issue. Working with a professional team promotes your safety, prevents damage to your equipment, and restores the functioning of your system.  

3. Frequent Cycling On and Off

It’s normal for your air conditioner to cycle on and off during the day to keep your home comfortable. However, short cycling (frequently turning on and off) typically indicates a problem in the system. In addition to limiting your AC’s effectiveness, short cycling lowers energy efficiency and causes premature equipment wear and tear.

Just like inadequate cooling, short cycling is a symptom with multiple potential causes. 

  • Incorrect AC size
  • Dirty or frozen evaporator coils
  • Low refrigerant level 
  • Malfunctioning thermostat 
  • Failing compressor motor
  • Restricted airflow

Call the professional technicians at Dragonfly Heating & Cooling to diagnose and address the cause of short cycling. Doing so can help prevent breakdowns, reduce repair costs, and lower your monthly energy bills.

4. Visible Leaks or Moisture

Finally, watch for visible drips, puddles, or condensation on or around your air conditioner — these indicate that your unit needs attention. In addition to dirty filters, the following issues can cause water leaks and moisture buildup: 

  • Clogged condensate drains: When algae, dirt, and other debris clog your drain, the line backs up and overflows.
  • Damaged drain pans: If your drain pan is cracked, rusted, or improperly installed, it won’t collect dripping moisture properly.
  • Frozen evaporator coils: Reduced airflow, low refrigerant levels, and dirt buildup can cause your AC unit’s coils to freeze. As the ice melts, it can overfill the drain pan and leak.
  • Refrigerant leak: A refrigerant leak can lead to low refrigerant levels, which in turn lead to frozen coils and messy ice melt.
  • Failing condensate pump: Condensate pumps move the water from your inside system outside. When it fails, water will escape and may damage your home.

If you notice leaking water indoors, turn off your AC as soon as possible. Unless you can fix the issue by changing your air filters or clearing a blocked return air vent, call for professional assistance. Dragonfly Heating & Cooling will quickly diagnose and repair the problem to prevent water damage to your home and equipment damage to your system. 

Does Your AC Need Help? Call Dragonfly Heating & Cooling Today!

Now that you know the common signs of air conditioner trouble, is it time to schedule professional service? Dragonfly Heating & Cooling is standing by for all your HVAC needs. We’ve been serving homeowners across Orange County and the Inland Empire since 2010.

We pride ourselves on our exceptional attention to detail, emphasis on continuing education, and unmatched satisfaction guarantee. Whether you need emergency AC repair or advice on how to keep any room cooler, call our team today at 951-684-0880.

Service Request

"*" indicates required fields

Are you a new customer?*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Ready now? Give us a call!

Schedule Service

"*" indicates required fields

Are you a new customer?*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.