The AC compressor is often considered the heart of a residential AC system. Without it, your AC wouldn’t be able to function. The main job of compressors is to compress refrigerant gas and pump it through the AC unit, enabling the system to remove heat and humidity from the air.
On average, compressors can last for 10 to15 years. When a compressor fails, it can be expensive or even impossible to fix. Below are some of the common causes of AC compressor failure and a few tips on how you can prevent premature failure.
Causes of AC Compressor Failure
Watch out for these culprits, as they may cause your AC’s compressor to break down:
- Clogged suction lines – When the refrigerant lines are blocked or damaged, the AC won’t be able to cool your home effectively. This increases the pressure and temperature of the unit, which can then lead to overheating and compressor failure.
- Low refrigerant charge – A low refrigerant charge is usually the result of holes or cracks in the refrigerant lines that create refrigerant leaks. This lowers the level of refrigerant, forcing the compressor to work harder in order to pump enough refrigerant through the AC unit.
- Dirty coils – Dust, grime and mineral scales may build up on the condenser coil. When this happens, the AC will have a hard time expelling enough heat from the system, which means it will have to run continuously in order to cool your space. This can cause overheating and compressor failure.
It’s not uncommon for people to forget about their AC and take it for granted after the initial air conditioner installation. While AC systems are designed to last several years, they still require a certain level of maintenance to keep their components in good condition.
As you may have noticed, some of the common causes of AC compressor failure and related issues can actually be avoided with regular cleaning. That said, make sure to clean the filters and condenser coil on a regular basis. Don’t forget to clear any debris out of the unit as well.
It’s important to have your AC unit serviced at least twice a year. With a professional’s help, you can ensure that all essential components of your air conditioner are accounted for. This is also a good opportunity to check if your AC is running low on refrigerant.
Air Products & Services is a local expert at residential and commercial AC maintenance. We have decades of experience in the trade, so you can rest assured that your HVAC needs will be handled satisfactorily. Call us at (818) 989-2030 or fill out our contact form to request an estimate. We serve customers in Tarzana, CA.