The refrigerant is a vital component of your air conditioning system. It absorbs heat from the indoor air and transfers it to the exterior. Your air conditioning system should not run out of refrigerant unless there is a leak somewhere. Low refrigerant levels will affect the efficiency of your air-conditioning system, leading to high energy bills. What's more, some parts of the system such as the compressor may be affected, and you may not attain the indoor temperatures as effectively as you desired. To avoid such problems, the source of the leak has to be fixed. However, you need to know some of the signs that the leak exists in the first place, and here is what you need to watch out for.
Reduced Cooling Power
Is your home taking longer than usual to cool? This is usually among the most straightforward signs of a refrigerant leak. That's because the purpose of the refrigerant is to absorb the heat inside your home and then transport it outside. If your air conditioning system is running low on the refrigerant as a result of a leak, your home will simply take longer to cool.
Warm Air From The Vents
Warm air coming from your air vents could also be a sign of a refrigerant leak. Low refrigerant levels mean that your air conditioner will not produce as much cool air as it often does if your thermostat settings remain the same. Therefore, besides your home taking longer to cool, you may start feeling warm air coming from the vents.
However, warmth from your air vents could also be a sign of other air conditioner problems such as dirty air filters. They can restrict the airflow and affect your air conditioner's ability to cool properly, so remember to check them too.
Unusual Sounds From The Indoor Unit
If the indoor unit starts producing strange sounds, you could be dealing with a refrigerant leak. Holes or punctures in your refrigerant lines are often the cause of a leak. As the refrigerant escapes through these holes, you may hear a hissing sound such as the one produced when air escapes through a tiny hole. If the leak is considerably large, you may hear a gurgling sound instead.
It may be tempting to refill your refrigerant once you notice a leak. This is a bad idea because you will end up spending more money on extra refrigerant but your system will still be inefficient. Therefore, find an air conditioner technician and have them repair the leak.
For more information on air conditioning repairs and maintenance, contact a professional.