Image of Hawaiian woman sitting on the floor in front of a green fan while eating watermelon.

AC Unit Blowing Hot Air: Causes, Prevention, and Repair

Image of Hawaiian woman sitting on the floor in front of a green fan while eating watermelon.

A broken HVAC system on a hot day in Hawaii is perhaps one of the most miserable combinations. Even though many parts of Hawaii have perfect weather year-round, most residents opt for an air conditioner for those particularly warm nights. However, a broken AC unit blowing hot air can turn a comfortable and serene night by the sea into a sweaty nightmare.

 There are many possible reasons why your AC is blowing out hot air. Luckily, you can also take several steps to resolve the issue. Read on to learn more about proceeding when faced with a malfunctioning HVAC system blowing hot air.

Potential Causes for AC Blowing Out Hot Air

Many different reasons may cause your AC unit to blow out hot air. The following are the most common issues to look out for if you’ve noticed your AC blowing hot air:

  • Dirty Air Filter: Anytime you’re experiencing hot air blowing from your AC system, it’s best to check and see if the air filters are dirty. The number one cause of an improperly functioning AC system is dirty air filters, leading to a buildup of dirt and grime and disrupting airflow. The resulting air production from an AC that has dirty filters is usually diminished, low quality, and, in most cases, devoid of cold air. Fortunately, if your system is affected by dirty air filters, your technician can quickly resolve the issue and get your air conditioner back to blowing cool air after routine servicing.
  • Frozen Evaporator Coils: Essentially, evaporator coils are the internal components of your air conditioner that help extract warm air and begin the cooling process. As the evaporator coils pull warm air, condensation forms within the system and collects in a drip pan. After operating for long periods, the drip pan can fail to drain correctly and cause condensation to build up within the system. As a result of condensation buildup, the evaporator coils can freeze and malfunction, leading to warm air production. Usually, frozen evaporator coils are a simple fix after alerting your servicing team. Your AC maintenance company will send a technician to your home, at which point they’ll assess the problem and devise a solution. 
5 causes of ac blowing hot air infographic
  • Refrigerant Leaks: Hot air production could also result from reduced refrigerant levels. In most instances, low refrigerant levels are due to leaks in the holding valves, which usually occur due to accumulated wear and tear. Refrigerant is the cooling chemical that allows your AC to adequately complete its cooling cycles; ensuring that your system isn’t experiencing any leaks is crucial to the proper functioning of your AC. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to repair your refrigerant leaks without the help of a licensed HVAC technician. You must contact your maintenance company if you believe that your system is experiencing a leak. 
  • Issues With Outside Unit: If you own a split AC or an air conditioning unit composed of indoor and outdoor components and noticed your air conditioner blowing hot air, the problem could be a lack of electricity. While your indoor unit may appear to be in working order, wiring issues could disrupt communications with the outdoor unit, causing the production of hot air. In this situation, the AC itself is fine; instead, during installation or due to wear-and-tear, the wires connecting the indoor and outdoor units failed. However, after a visit from your HVAC, you can expect your AC unit to be back to functioning as usual!

This is a handful of the most common causes of your AC blowing warm air, but trained professionals can determine other reasons. Therefore, when in doubt, contact your local HVAC maintenance company with any questions or concerns about your air conditioner to ensure that your system works when you need it most.factor

My AC Is Blowing Hot Air: Preventive Measures

Of course, it’s essential to have your system serviced at least once a year, particularly before summer. Usually, routine servicing is enough to avoid any significant issues such as the presence of hot air. However, sometimes even with regular maintenance, AC problems can occur. Therefore, it’s crucial to take preventive measures to guarantee the proper functioning of your home’s air conditioning system and avoid malfunctions that lead to hot air coming from your vents. 

Generally, your AC system should always have a clean air filter, as clogged air filters can hinder air production. It’s also essential to ensure your outdoor AC unit remains clean and free from debris buildup. 

Another preventive measure is to check that the interior air ducts are clean and not blocked. Simply open your vents and inspect the ducts. If there’s a significant debris buildup, this is likely causing the hot air and poor indoor air quality. Homeowners should also keep the condenser and heat pumps clean, as dirty pumps can likewise lead to the production of warm air. 

When It's Time to Repair Your AC Unit

Fortunately, a professional servicing technician can conduct all aforementioned preventative measures and follow through with additional AC repairs during routine servicing. 

Unless you’re simply changing a filter or cleaning the ducts, it’s best to call a professional rather than attempt to resolve any other issues yourself. Neglecting to seek help from an HVAC professional and opting to make the repairs alone can result in more harm than good to your HVAC. Furthermore, anytime you suspect that an electrical issue is the cause of the problem, you should contact an HVAC professional to avoid lasting damage to your system. 

If a critical issue is causing the hot air production, you may be faced with purchasing a completely new AC unit. Fortunately, your maintenance technician will walk you through the process and provide you with several possible solutions before suggesting a system replacement.

Air Conditioner Service With Island Comfort

Ultimately, if your HVAC system blows out hot air, don’t assume the worst. There could be several likely causes for the issue, and most can be resolved after a quick AC tune-up by your technician.

At Island Comfort Air Conditioning, we’re the company you can trust for handling these types of AC maintenance-related issues. Anytime you’re out of service and need a quick solution, we want to be the first HVAC company that comes to your mind. To discover more about our HVAC products and maintenance plans, visit our website today.

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