A broken air conditioner is the worst way to start your summer. Air conditioners can malfunction or go down for any number of reasons. Unfortunately, they seem to do this only when you need them most. The issue is often easily fixed, and we have compiled a list of potential problems for you to keep an eye out for. 

1. Operational ErrorsSmiling woman using modern smart home system, controller on wall, to fix broken air conditionerSmiling woman using modern smart home system, controller on wall, to fix broken air conditioner

As easy as it is to blame the machine for not working correctly, it is often the case that we simply neglected to check that everything was set up correctly before turning it on.

Unit Is Not Switched On 

If you are just now starting up your unit for the first time ever, or the first time this season, it is possible that you may have forgotten to check that the unit was switched on. While a simple fix, it’s easy to overlook!

The Thermostat Is Not Set To Cool 

Another common mistake many homeowners make is simply forgetting to change their thermostat settings when the season begins to change. Just changing the temperature to a lower setting will not cool your home if the unit is still set to “heat”, or worse, set to “off”. If your AC isn’t working the way you expected, check the thermostat and confirm that it’s set the way it should be.

2. Thermostat Issues

Speaking of thermostats, it’s possible for that to be the source of your woes.

Broken Or Malfunctioning Thermostat

If you think you have a broken air conditioner, it’s possible that the cause could actually be the thermostat. If your thermostat is no longer reading the temperature correctly or has simply stopped working, it may be time to replace it.

Dead batteries

Some thermostats, though not all, require batteries to work in the first place. If your once functional thermostat has stopped lighting up or responding, check the batteries. If you’re not sure, look up your thermostat’s manufacturer. They should have tutorials online on how to replace the batteries. 

3. Electrical issues

So, you plugged in your AC, and you replaced the thermostat batteries, but you are still stuck with a broken air conditioner. What gives?

Blown Circuit Breaker Or Fuse

Checking your circuit breaker is a good place to start to determine if your broken air conditioner is caused by an electrical issue. If flipping the breaker off and back on does not work within about 15 minutes, the fuse itself may be blown. In this case, you will need to call a professional to replace it.

Blown Transformer

This is another issue best left in the hands of a trained HVAC pro because the transformer is located within the outdoor unit. Unless your really know what you are doing you could risk damaging your unit or even injuring yourself.

4. Cleaning

Routine housekeeping is a lot to handle on its own, so it’s no surprise that things like these slip our minds from time to time.

Air Filters

Over time, if your air filters are not cleaned or replaced, they will become clogged. This will restrict airflow to your AC unit. Keeping a regular maintenance schedule of your HVAC unit will avoid the problem of a broken air conditioner altogether.

Dirty Coils Or Frozen

Dirty coils often happen as a result of not changing air filters frequently enough. When dust and dirt accumulate inside your air conditioner, it can lead to frozen evaporator coils. Frozen coils will result in water dripping onto the floor from your ac unit. 

5. Damaged AC Unit.

Whether due to a recent storm, a tree falling over, or just normal wear and tear, damage happens.


Refrigerant issues are normally caused when a leak has started in your air conditioner. This is a major problem because the refrigerant is what literally cools the air as it passes through the system. This issue will need to be repaired by a trained HVAC technician.

Starting Components

A broken air conditioner could be caused by the starting components, which look like two giant batteries, having stopped working. Whether one or both has stopped, your ac cannot function without them. This is also an issue best left to the pros.

Still Have A Broken Air Conditioner?

A broken air conditioner can be confusing, stressful, and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be! Stack, Heating, Cooling, Plumbing, and Electric is here to take care of all your air conditioning woes. Our trained HVAC technicians know how to handle any problem. Give us a call today!  

Have Any Questions?

If this is an emergency please call 440-937-9134.

Otherwise, please feel free to call us or submit this form to schedule an appointment for service or request an estimate. We will contact you shortly!