Your air conditioner gets a ton of use during the summer, and at some point, it will most likely break down and require repair. Here are some common problems that you may run into as a homeowner with central air conditioning.
Your air conditioner's outdoor condenser has a capacity that can go bad. When this happens, the indoor unit will be working and producing hot air, while the outdoor unit will not be running at all. If you go outside to listen to the condenser startup, you may hear a buzzing from the capacitor as it tries to start the compressor and fails. This is a sure sign that your capacitor needs to be replaced.
An issue with low refrigerant is a problem that is hard to repair but easy to diagnose. If the indoor and outdoor units are running, but the air conditioner is producing warm air, then you know that there is a problem with low refrigerant. If you simply put more refrigerant in the system, it will likely escape through whatever leak exists in the refrigerant line. You'll need to find the leak, repair it, and then put more refrigerant in the system.
Condensate Drain Clog
A really easy problem to fix is when you have a condensate drain that has a clog in it. You'll notice this problem when the air conditioner is working properly but there is a puddle coming from the indoor air handler. This is because the drain line has a clog in it, the water is not able to get to the drain, and the moisture from the a-coil is not able to properly leave the unit. Try opening up the plastic drain pipe and remove whatever is clogging the inside of it.
Bad Control Board
When the control board of the air conditioner goes bad, the entire system will start acting oddly. Fans may not be told to turn on when they are supposed to, the a-coil can freeze up from other components not turning on, or the fan motor never turns off as if it was stuck in the on position. While it is difficult to troubleshoot a control board on your own, it could be the solution for the problems that are hard to explain.
Reach out to an HVAC technician if you are having one of these problems and need the air conditioner repaired.