If you are noticing signs that your air conditioning system might be having trouble, we understand why you’re trying to figure out what’s going on BEFORE it breaks down completely.
Very smart of you! When you can replace failing parts proactively before they cause bigger problems, you can often prevent a more expensive repair, not to mention inconvenient downtime.
Here’s a quick primer on air conditioner fans, and how the signs you’re seeing might point to replacing one of these fans to prevent a breakdown. Plus, we’ll share how you can prevent this type of problem from happening to you again.
Which air conditioner fan is failing: blower and condenser?
In the most common types of central air conditioning systems, you have two types of fans:
- CONDENSER FAN
- BLOWER FAN
The condenser is the outdoor component of your air conditioning system. The condenser fan helps to cool your system’s refrigerant and expel excess heat outdoors. If this fan stops working, your system can overheat, leading to serious and expensive problems.
The blower is part of the indoor air conditioning unit that removes the heat from your space and supplies cool air.
The blower fan distributes the cooled air throughout the rooms or sections of your space by circulating it through the registers and ducts.
When the blower fan or motor isn’t working right, your system loses cooling power and can make strange noises.
3 signs of a bad air conditioner fan
Here are some common symptoms that you may be noticing, and the air conditioner fan problem that may be causing them.
Fan stopped or moved slowly
As you investigate any of the other symptoms mentioned here, you may discover that either the blower fan or the condenser fan is turning slower than usual or not working at all.
Oftentimes, this problem can be caused by a bad capacitor, which is an electrical component that stores power and delivers it to the fan. If this is the source of your air conditioner’s problem, you’re in luck: this is a quick and easy fix by your HVAC technician.
If the airflow coming from your vents is weak, this could mean that the blower is malfunctioning. Your air conditioner can experience problems when the motor that drives the blower slows down or burns out, or the fan itself slows down because it’s coated in dust and grime.
If you have access to your indoor air conditioner unit, you can take a look at the fan and see if it’s turning very slowly or not turning at all.
Weak airflow can also be the result of clogged air filters or leaky ducts. Your best bet is to start with a professional inspection and cleaning of your system, which can take care of all the possible causes of poor airflow.
If your blower motor is aging and in need of replacement, your system may occasionally shut down on its own, especially on a hot day when the system has been running for a long time.
As the aging motor works hard to turn the blower fan, it may start to overheat and trigger the unit to shut down.
In this case, you may need a technician to replace your blower motor and fan.
How to prevent air conditioner fan problems from causing a breakdown
Here’s a simple truth: all of the issues described here should have been discovered during a routine preventative maintenance visit, even before you noticed the symptoms.
Your HVAC company technician would have replaced worn parts before they caused bigger issues and cleaned system components to keep the units working properly.
Having an HVAC preventative maintenance contract not only prevents breakdowns but also saves you money. If you’re in the La Quinta or Palm Desert area, contact Western Air for reliable maintenance from experts you can trust.