Troubleshooting HVAC Systems

HVAC Los Angeles systems include air conditioners, furnaces, air handlers and ductwork that move cool and warm air throughout a home or building. They are operated by control systems like thermostats. IAQ components like air purifiers and humidifiers are add-ons to many HVAC systems.


Air conditioning systems cool indoor air by absorbing heat from it and releasing cooling energy into the environment. They also ventilate the system to replace stale air with fresh outdoor air.

If you’re having trouble getting your furnace to start working, there are a few things you can try. Check to make sure that the thermostat is in “heat mode,” and adjust it up a few degrees. Also check that the a.m. and p.m. settings are correct, since these often get changed when you have a power outage and the thermostat reverts to its default program. Check the wiring to make sure that nothing has come loose or broken, particularly if you’ve done any remodeling in your home recently. You can also open the thermostat and gently blow out any dust, but be careful not to damage the thin wires.

Another possibility is that your gas valve has been closed. To check this, follow the flex pipe from the gas meter to the furnace, which will connect to black metal pipe with a valve. The valve will likely be in the off position, and will need to be turned on. If this doesn’t work, your problem may be a bit more serious and you’ll need to call in an expert.

The other possibility is that the fan setting on the thermostat has been changed to “fan continuous.” This will cause the fans to run constantly, and will not allow the heater to turn on. It’s worth checking this, although you should keep in mind that the blower motor is not the same as a fan. You can also look in the ducts for any handles that protrude out, which are the dampers that control air flow.

Your last resort, assuming the above steps have not solved your issue, is to reset the ignitor/sensor. Consult your user manual for instructions on how to do this, as it’s a fairly technical process and requires you to remove the front panel of your furnace.

Depending on the results of these troubleshooting steps, you may have to replace a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker. Then you should be able to get your furnace up and running again. If not, it may be time to call in a professional from Billings HVAC.

The Cooling Isn’t Working

One of the most important functions of HVAC, especially in a home, is cooling. Some systems cool with a conventional air conditioning unit, while others (including heat pumps) cool with a device similar to the one used in a furnace. Either way, the purpose is to grab warm indoor air and move it outside, which lowers the indoor temperature.

The main parts of an HVAC system that are involved in cooling are the indoor air handler and outdoor condenser. Forced-air systems (which use ductwork to distribute the air) have an air handler that houses some of the AC components, while central and split air conditioners have separate units for heating and cooling.

Most air conditioners also have a drain pan that collects excess water. If the drain pan gets full, it triggers a float switch that shuts off the AC. This is an important safety feature that helps prevent flooding in your house, but if it happens frequently, it may be because the air conditioner is not big enough for your home.

Another common problem is that the blower motor is not working, which can cause the system to fail to turn on. This can be caused by a number of things, including a dirty air filter or clogged vents. In some cases, a blower fan motor can simply burn out.

It’s also possible that the AC isn’t getting power. This can be due to a number of things, but it’s often because the breaker box has been tripped. Try to find the breaker that’s linked to your HVAC system, and flip it back on.

There are also some problems that can be difficult to fix on your own, but which are still relatively affordable. For example, if the capacitors inside your outdoor unit are on the fritz, you might need to get them replaced by an HVAC pro. These components — which look like giant batteries — give the motors their initial push to start running, and they have a limited lifespan.

Other HVAC-related problems can be more expensive, such as an a/c compressor that has failed or an outdoor unit that has lost refrigerant. In these instances, you will need to have the entire unit inspected and repaired by an expert.

The Thermostat Isn’t Working

Your thermostat is a key piece of equipment that regulates your HVAC system. So, when it’s not working correctly, it can throw off the whole system. Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to troubleshoot what might be wrong with your thermostat and get it back up and running.

First, check to see if the batteries are dead. If they are, replace them and power up the thermostat. If that doesn’t work, try removing the cover and checking to see if the wires are plugged in. If you’re not comfortable messing around with the wires (it can be dangerous), you can call in a professional to open up the thermostat and see what’s going on.

Another common thermostat problem is that the fan is continuously running, even when the temperature settings are turned off. This can occur if the setting is on “auto,” which means the blower will always run, even when the system isn’t heating or cooling.

If you’re noticing that the temperature on the thermostat doesn’t match what it feels like in your home, it could be an issue with the sensors. These can be caused by a number of factors, including improper placement and dust build-up. If the thermostat is constantly recalibrating itself, it can also cause problems with its readings.

A tripped circuit breaker can also cause your thermostat to stop working. If this is the case, you’ll need to locate your breaker box and find the breaker that controls your thermostat. Switch it off and then on again to see if this fixes the issue.

Your thermostat has many electrical connections that serve various functions, from displaying the temperature to communicating with your HVAC unit. These can become loose, especially if you’ve had the thermostat for several years or it was installed incorrectly. Additionally, vibrations or rodents in the attic can affect these connections and lead to issues with your thermostat. If the above steps don’t solve your problem, it’s time to call an HVAC specialist. They’ll have the training and tools needed to figure out what’s going on with your thermostat and fix it quickly.

The Ductwork Isn’t Working

If you notice that some rooms in your home aren’t getting heated or cooled as well as other areas, the problem may lie with your air ducts. This is because your HVAC system might be working overtime to keep up with a limited amount of air being pushed through the vents. A professional can use a special camera to inspect the ductwork for leaks or blockages that are impeding the flow of air.

If the ducts are dirty, there’s a good chance that you won’t be able to solve the problem by simply cleaning them. While air filters are designed to keep most dust, dirt and other particles out of your HVAC system, there’s no limit to the amount of small debris that can accumulate in a duct over time. If this builds up, it can cause a variety of issues including poor airflow and lowered indoor air quality.

Other issues with ductwork include problems with sizing. If your ducts are too big, they’ll struggle to maintain the required pressure in the system and cool or hot air will have difficulty reaching all areas of the house. Conversely, if your ducts are too small, they won’t be able to adequately distribute the desired temperatures.

Another common issue is that there aren’t enough return or supply vents in the home. It’s important to have an adequate number of both so that the blower can suck in return air from all the room in the house, helping to balance the pressure in the ductwork and improve the HVAC airflow.

A final issue that sometimes occurs is that the ductwork itself may be damaged. This can be caused by physical obstructions, like furniture blocking a vent or a buildup of dust over time. In this case, it might be possible to fix the problem by rearranging furniture or cleaning the vents. In more serious cases, it might be necessary to replace the ductwork entirely.


Common Air Conditioning Problems

A musty or mildewy smell may indicate your AC system has a mold problem. Dead animals could also cause clogs or leaks in your ductwork.

If your home cools some rooms better than others, this might be due to a faulty thermostat or air vent blockage. You can recalibrate the thermostat or clean the vents. Click https://hubbardmechanical.com/ to learn more.


The evaporator coil is one of the most important parts of your air conditioning unit. When this part freezes, it’s a clear sign that you must fix the problem immediately. Read on to learn more about the evaporator coil, how it freezes, and what you can do about it.

The most common reason for an AC evaporator coil to freeze is a dirty air filter. The clogged filter restricts the airflow that the coil needs to warm up and change the pressure in the system. Changing your air filters will help to avoid this issue.

Another cause for a frozen coil is a blocked condensate drain line. This pipe carries away excess moisture that is caused by humidity. If it becomes clogged, it can result in water back-up that may flood your home and damage your unit. A professional technician can inspect and clean the drainage line for a clog.

A malfunctioning thermostat is another air conditioning problem that could lead to a frozen evaporator coil. The thermostat fails to properly signal the cooling system to run long enough to heat up and cool down the house. A professional can test the thermostat to make sure it is working correctly.

An air conditioner with a low refrigerant charge can also cause the evaporator coil to freeze. The refrigerant chemical runs through the evaporator coil, changing pressure and temperature to remove heat from your home. A professional can find and fix any leaks in the refrigerant lines to prevent this issue from happening again.

A faulty blower fan can also stop the cooling system from moving air through the evaporator coil. A professional can inspect the blower fan and fix or replace it. To avoid this problem, you can check the area around your air conditioner to ensure it is free from obstructions, such as rugs and furniture, that could block the flow of air. In addition, you should periodically clean the blower fan to avoid excessive dirt build-up.

It’s not unusual to see an air conditioner with a frozen thermostat. It’s a common AC problem that can be easily fixed but can also be a sign of a more serious issue with your system. The best thing to do is shut off the system and check for ice. Once the coils are thawed, you can call an air conditioning professional to determine what caused it and the next steps.

Usually, the most obvious reason an AC unit froze is that there isn’t enough warm air over the evaporator coil. This can be due to a dirty air filter, a malfunctioning blower motor, a clogged or closed vent, or ductwork plugged, collapsed, or undersized.

A jarring bump or a blown-out bulb can knock it out of alignment if you have a digital thermostat. This can cause it to set the wrong temperature, leading to a frozen coil or other air conditioning problems. It’s a good idea to replace the batteries and clean the thermostat regularly to prevent this.

Another simple way to solve this problem is to open all your vents and ensure they’re not blocked by furniture or draperies. It’s also a good idea to unplug any normally closed vents with nothing in front of them so they can get the airflow they need.

This is a common issue with older air conditioning systems, especially if they need regular maintenance. It’s easy to forget about things like changing the air filters and cleaning evaporator coils, but these simple tasks can help keep your system running well and reduce the risk of a frozen system.

If you have hot and cold spots in your home, it’s likely because the air conditioner isn’t evenly cooling or heating all areas. A professional HVAC technician can use manual J to determine how many CFM per room your system needs to maintain proper temperatures and balance the airflow with internal dampers.

Blocked vents, clogged filters, or open windows usually cause uneven airflow. It’s important to check for each of these before calling in an AC service professional.

If your home has a lot of furniture blocking the air vents, some rooms are always hotter or cooler than others. The air has to travel farther to reach those rooms, and the extra distance causes heat loss. This also puts more strain on your AC unit, which could lead to high energy bills.

Closing or closing your vents to save money might help in the short term, but it can make your system work harder and cause many problems. You can solve this problem by checking the vents and ensuring they aren’t closed or obstructed.

When your filter gets dirty, it can clog and restrict the flow of conditioned air to the rest of your home. A clogged air filter can also cause the air conditioner to work harder to cool your house.

Over time, ductwork can lose its seal, allowing conditioned air to escape before reaching its intended destination. If you have leaky ducts, it’s important to have them repaired as soon as possible before they cause major problems.

Improper installation or design issues often cause an unbalanced HVAC system. A qualified HVAC professional can add or remove air vents, seal and insulate accessible ducts, or add dampers to existing ductwork to help balance the cooled airflow throughout your home. The best solution to uneven airflow is a zoned air conditioning system, which divides your home into different zones that can be controlled separately from each other.

When a wire becomes loose, it can cause problems with other components in your air conditioning system and be dangerous. Loose electrical connections can lead to arc faults, electrical fires, and electrocution. Electrical wiring should be left to licensed professionals. If you do need to try to repair a wire connection yourself, it is important that you first turn off power at the switchboard and use appropriate tools such as wire nut or push-in connectors. Then, ensure adequate wire insulation and that any exposed copper ends are protected by the appropriate materials, such as plastic or rubber, to avoid further damage.

Some of the most common air conditioning problems with electrical connections are caused by faulty or outdated wiring, tripping circuit breakers, and even damaged capacitors. Fixing these issues without the right experience can be extremely dangerous and lead to expensive damage or even death.

Electrical problems with your AC can be incredibly complex and often require the attention of trained electricians with years of experience. This is particularly true of electrical problems involving your circuit breaker, capacitor, and other complex wiring components. Suppose you are still determining whether the wiring, the breaker, or something else causes your AC electrical problem. In that case, turning off the power and contacting an electrician is always best.

If your air conditioner trips the breaker, it could be due to many problems, including dirty filters, a capacitor that isn’t functioning properly, or a compressor that is too old. However, it may also be caused by a loose or cut wire, overheating wire, an oversupply of electricity, or a faulty relay or thermostat. A qualified technician should be called to perform a complete inspection and diagnosis before any further damage or injury can occur.

If you notice that a wire is exposed, it should never be touched. It is possible that the insulation has deteriorated or pests have chewed through it. This can be a serious safety issue; if you feel it, you could get a nasty shock. If a wire is bare, it should be re-insulated by a professional, and the technician should also check for any other signs of electrical problems.