Fayetteville(910) 822-2866
Triangle(919) 298-2105

Back To Blog

My AC is Running But My House isn’t Cooling Down, What’s Wrong?


Your air conditioner is definitely turned on, but your house still feels like a sauna. Here are the most common AC problems that could be causing this issue.

Is your AC running? If yes, then you’d better go catch it! If not, you’ve come to the right place; your local HVAC professionals in North Carolina are here to help you understand the most common AC problems that keep your house from cooling down.

All puns aside, if your AC is running, but your house still feels like a sauna, there are a few potential culprits for why this is happening. To fix the issue and stop your AC from blowing hot air, you’ll have to identify the problem and then schedule maintenance or repair. In rare instances, you may have to replace your entire AC unit.  But that’s why it pays to call a pro: They’ll give you all of the facts before you make any big decisions.

Common Problems with An AC That’s Running But Not Cooling

If you have central air, you’re probably used to controlling it through the use of a thermostat. Whether you turn it on using the control plate on your wall at home or through an app on your smartphone, using the thermostat should start the process of cooling your home. If the program is running, the air should be gradually getting cooler. But if the house is still warm and/or the vents are blowing hot air, there’s a problem. Here are some common issues when the AC is running but not “working.”

The Refrigerant Is Leaking

Refrigerant is a gaseous compound that works with the compressor, coils, and condenser to cool and condition the air that’s distributed throughout your house. So if the AC has a leak, it means that refrigerant is escaping through the outdoor lines, rather than remaining contained within the unit and doing its job. When refrigerant leaks occur, they should be fixed as soon as possible. (It’s illegal to add more refrigerant before fixing the unit!)

The Air Filter Is Dirty

Thankfully, this is one of the easiest fixes for an AC that’s running but not cooling. Changing your AC air filter regularly is imperative for keeping the unit in top shape, not to mention maintaining high-quality air for breathing — this is crucial for folks who suffer from allergies. If the last time you changed your AC’s air filter was the eleventh of Never, it’s time for a refresher. A dirty filter means that the unit has to work over its capacity and will take a lot longer (and a lot more energy) to perform the task you’re asking of it.

The Condenser Is Blocked Or Obstructed

The air conditioner condenser lives outdoors, and outside of that is a condenser coil. It’s possible that grass clippings, leaves, or other yard debris could be clogging the condenser. Use a brush to clean the area, or lightly hose it down.

The Evaporator Coil Is Frozen

This is the part of your air conditioner that lives indoors. If frost or ice buildup is accumulating on your AC unit, your air conditioner is running but working overtime, ultimately causing the entire unit to shut down. You’ll definitely want to call an HVAC professional to deal with a frozen or frosted evaporator coil.

Your Air Conditioner is Too Small

Size matters — well, when it comes to air conditioners, anyway. If your unit is low-capacity, but you’re using it to cool a house with large square footage, the result will be high energy bills and hot temperatures indoors. This is a good opportunity to upgrade to a new, larger AC unit, preferably a high-efficiency one that will rapidly cool your entire home with low effort.

Contact Blanton’s Air for AC Repair

If you’ve got the AC running, but the house isn’t cooling down, that’s a surefire way to get your day started on the wrong foot. A broken AC is always a bummer in hot environments, like a North Carolina summer. If you have a central air conditioner, it’s highly recommended that you turn on your AC once before you actually need it. This will allow you to notice any issues that need to be addressed, like dusty air vents, ductwork that needs cleaning, a clogged air filter, to name a few. As a bonus incentive, HVAC repair work may be more cost-effective when done outside of the peak season. It will also pay to invest in a new unit when demand is low. 

Don't Settle For Less, Make Blanton's Air Your First Call