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What to Do When Your AC Fails in a Heat Wave

desk-fanIt’s blazing hot August and home air conditioning systems are more vital than ever—making a failed AC into a major emergency. This is a situation we hope you don’t have to face this summer. You can trust us for air conditioning repair in Katy, TX when your AC gives out on you, but we can’t arrive instantly and solve the problem in seconds. We’ll do our best, as we always do for customers, but we want to arm you with the knowledge necessary to make it through this problem in the best comfort and safety possible.

First, troubleshoot the AC problem

When your air conditioner first stops working, you may feel panicked and want to call right away for repairs. Before you do, go through a basic set of troubleshooting steps to see if there’s a simple issue behind why the AC won’t work:

  • Check the thermostats in the house to ensure they’re set correctly.
  • Examine the electrical panel to see if the circuit breaker for the AC has tripped. This can happen when the air conditioner runs longer than it normally has to.
  • Change the air filter on the HVAC cabinet if it’s dirty and then see if the air conditioner will run.

Please don’t try to open up either cabinet of the AC to see if you can repair the system on your own. This can make the situation worse. Once you’ve exhausted troubleshooting problems, the next step is to call us for repairs. 

Close blinds and shutters

If the AC fails during the middle of the day (the most likely scenario), shutter or blind all the windows to your house that can let in radiant heat from sunlight. You can keep the windows open to allow in air as long as they’re covered to block sunlight. This will significantly reduce heat inside your home.

Shut off all heat-using appliances

This includes lights! You don’t want to add extra heat into the home if it’s not necessary. Shut off entertainment systems, monitors, etc. Don’t do any loads of wash (which will also send humidity into the air) and avoid using the stove or oven. This is a time to rely on cold food, not cooking. Make this the time for sandwiches!

Make a jerry-rigged evaporative cooler

This sounds complex, but it’s actually easy if you have room fans and some ice cubes in the freezer. Place the ice cubes in a bowl, then place the bowl in front of the fan. As the air blows over the ice, it will lose heat and you’ll receive genuinely cooler air for a good stretch.

Place damps towels over open windows

Here’s an old-fashioned method of cooling the inside of a building that goes back to ancient Egypt, when hanging wet reeds over windows helped people stay cool. Wet down a towel with cold water from the sink and then drape it before an open window. The air coming in will be cooler thanks to the evaporative cooling effect from the water.

We hope this helps you and your family keep your “cool” until we get your AC fixed.

At AC Comfort, Your Comfort Is Our Business! Reach out to us to handle your AC repair needs.

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