How Do I Know My HVAC Compressor Is Bad?

One of the most common causes for an Air Conditioning unit breaking down is a failing Air Conditioner compressor, which is a part that typically gives a fair warning it is on the brink of failure before it completely breaks down.
Often, however, homeowners don’t usually call in a broken air conditioner until it has completely stopped working. This can cause a lot higher costs to repair it as well, because it may cause other domino effect issues. It’s very important to know when your compressor is beginning to show signs that failure is imminent, meaning you can get it fixed before it’s too late.

Not only can knowing the signs of a wearing compressor save you money but if your compressor happens to stop working in the hottest peak of summer, you will have to suffer through the heat as well.

What Are the Warning Signs?

There are many obvious warning signs that your HVAC compressor might be having issues, however, some are more obvious than others. Your compressor is the heart of your air conditioning system and when it starts having issues the results will be staring you in the face.

HVAC systems are very complex, but here are some of the simple signs that you need to get a professional to come and look at it.

Loud Noises

Noises like ticking, clunking, rumbling, rattling, clicking or squealing are not normal sounds to come from a compressor. In fact, compressors should be quiet 99% of the time. If you turn on your air conditioning unit and you hear any strange noises you have never heard before coming from it, chances are there might be an issue with your compressor. There are many components to a compressor, and different noises mean different things. A clicking noise could mean that the mounts that hold the compressor in place could have failed, making the motor bounce around in the space it should be contained in.

Struggling to Turn On

If your HVAC unit struggles to turn itself on or takes a while, it could also mean the compressor is having issues. There are many reasons this could happen and could be to do with the electrical components like the relay switch that starts the compressor when you turn the unit on.

Moisture Leaks

If you find moisture or water puddles around your Air Conditioning unit, it could mean that you have a refrigerant leak in your compressor. The refrigerant is a gas that cools the air, just like in your fridge, and if the gases leak, it can be harmful to your health and your family’s health. If your compressor is leaking refrigerant, it won’t be very long until it stops working altogether. In this instance, turn it off and call a professional out before you switch it back on again.

Other Ways to Tell

Some other ways to tell if your compressor needs repairs are limited or restricted air flow compared to normal, as well as the unit not cooling the air as it normally would, or warmer air. It’s important that if you notice any issues with your HVAC unit, that you contact a professional who can look at the issues and run regular maintenance on your system, so these types of issues don’t continue to happen.