If you have an air conditioner it is important that it works well because when it does you are saving money and energy along with keep your home cool during the summer months. Many things can be wrong with your air conditioner and cause it not to work properly. Some you can fix but if it is something major then you may need to call an AC repair contractor. It may run but not doing a good job cooling the room, leaking or dripping water or just does not work at all.
If your air conditioner does not automatically come on when it receives the signal from the thermostat that the house needs cooling it is probably because the thermostat is not working right. The first thing that you should do is make sure that you have the thermostat set to cool. The temperature setting should also be below the ambient temperature. If these are all correct then you will need to check the main electrical panel to see if there is a blown fuse or a tripped breaker. If either of these are the problem you will need to replace the fuse or reset the breaker.
If it is not a fuse or breaker problem you need to check the outdoor unit to make sure the power switch is not turned off and that the furnace power switch is turned on. Next to the compressor is a two-hundred forty volt disconnect metal box that needs to be on. The last thing that you want to check out if none of these is the problem is the thermostat itself. First make sure that you have turned off the power before you do any air conditioning repair. To check the thermostat you need to remove the cover and unscrew the wire from the Y terminal and then turn the power back on. Make sure that you are holding the wire by the insulation and touch the end that is bare to the R terminal. If the compressor kicks on you have a faulty thermostat, which you can replace. If the compressor does not come on after a couple of minutes you need to turn off the power and call an AC repair technician.
If it is not cooling like it should even though you can hear it running there are two things that could cause this problem. You should first try to clean it so that the air is flowing properly but make sure that you have turned it off first. You should make sure that there are no leaves or debris around the outdoor condenser. If this does not help you will need to call an AC repair contractor to recharge the coolant.
Most air conditioners will create significant condensation that will usually exit through a plastic drainpipe so if you notice water at the base of the air conditioner it could be leaking from this tube. You can fix this problem by cleaning out the tube or replacing it.