A thermostat is critical to maintaining the desired temperature in your home because this sophisticated device manages the cooling and heating. Basically, it reads or senses the temperature inside your home and adjusts it as per your need. What would happen if the thermostat stops working? Your heating or cooling system will no more be able to read the physical temperature of the surroundings and adjust it as per your setting. In short, your home will reflect the same temperature as outdoors, and your hopes for a pleasant time will be dashed. If the AC thermostat is not working, it is not the end of the world. Until the problem is too serious, you can fix it yourself.
AC Thermostat Not Working
When the AC thermostat stops working mostly, it will not be accompanied by sparks, smoke, or fire. It will just be a subtle shutdown where the display screen goes blank. When the display goes blank, the thermostat is unable to signal the AC to cycle on. As a result, the compressor does not kick in, and there is no cooling or heating.
Signs Of AC Thermostat Not Working
The most common symptoms of AC thermostat not working are –
1. Your living space is warmer or cooler than the temperature you set.
2. The AC short cycles often.
3. The thermostat display unit is blank.
4. Your AC is not working.
How To Fix It Yourself
Before calling the HVAC technician, here are a few things that you can do –
1. Check For Tripped Breaker Or Blown Fuse – The first thing to check is whether the thermostat is receiving power or not. For this, you will have to check in the fuse box or the main electrical panel. If the circuit breaker is tripped, push it back in the proper position. If the fuse is blown, you will have to replace the fuse wire or the entire fuse. Both these jobs can be performed by you.
2. Low Or Dead Batteries – Some thermostats use batteries as the power source. If your thermostat uses batteries, it may be time to change them. With constant use, the battery charge may have dropped drastically, or it could be completely dead. Replace the old batteries with new ones of the same power.
3. Check For Buildup And Debris In The Thermostat – Once you are sure that the thermostat is receiving power, its time to inspect the inner components. Shut down the thermostat breaker and unscrew or take off its front panel. Check for any sort of buildup on the electrical and mechanical components. It could include dust, grime, soot, or dirt. Use a soft brush or canned compressed air to get rid of these unwanted particles.
4. Check For Loose Wires And Corrosion – Now that the front panel is open, you might as well check for any loose connections or signs of corrosion on the terminals. If there are any loose wires, tighten them. If a wire is hanging free, you can use the wiring schematic in the owner’s manual to fix it to the correct location. In case there is corrosion on terminals, use a terminal cleaner to clean them.
How An HVAC Technician Can Help Fix Faulty Thermostat
An AC technician is the most skilled and knowledgeable person who can help you with any type of AC problems, including AC thermostat not working. In addition to performing all the above checks, they can also look for bigger problems like –
1. Poor Installation – Temperature discrepancies can arise if the thermostat is not installed properly. The thermostat should not be located in direct sunlight or any other sources of heat or draft. Similarly, it should be fixed and tightened suitable so that it does not hang at an angle or move with the slightest bump. A technician is the best judge for deciding the location of the thermostat. You can give them your preference but go with their wisdom. It will save you from such issues later.
2. Stuck Heat Anticipator – Heat anticipator is a small metal arm that rests on a circular dial. If this arm is stuck in one position, it will not allow the thermostat to work correctly. If your thermostat is a mechanical model, this might be the cause of the problem. A technician can fix this problem with ease as they know what the arm looks like and hence, leave no room for error.
3. Poorly Calibrated Anticipator – If the anticipator is poorly calibrated, it will result in short cycles or continuous running. This is an issue that can be best handled by the HVAC technician as it involves constant adjustments until you see the desired improvement.
4. Dead Thermostat – The thermostat could actually be dead and beyond repair. However, this is something that only a trained technician can confirm. You cannot simply assume it to be so. Once the technician confirms that the thermostat is dead, it will have to be replaced with a new one. Again, the new thermostat has to be installed properly with all the appropriate connections. You will find no better person to do this job than your local HVAC technician.
When To Call The Technician
When to call the HVAC technician is ultimately your call to make. If you are not comfortable with any aspect of the fixes mentioned above that can be performed by you, call the technician. However, if you can do some of the preliminary checks, do them before calling the technician. If there is an obvious problem, you can locate it yourself and save the technician’s fee. When in doubt, ask your trusted technician to come and have a look at things.
Thermostat problems can happen anytime and with anyone. Minor issues can be fixed without breaking a sweat by yourself. Panicking and assuming the worst may be to your detriment. If you are not comfortable handling the problem, you need not feel pressured to take care of things. Keep calm and call Aztil AC to ward off all your AC troubles. We take good care of your air conditioner so that you can enjoy your life in peace.