Air Conditioner Won’t Turn On: Main Reasons And How To Fix It?

Imagine you came from outside on a hot summer day and your air conditioner won’t turn on. Infuriating, right? I have been there I know how it feels. No one would want to experience something like that.

Now, you must be wondering why is that happening. Well, stick with me till the end of this article. I will tell you why this happens and what can you do to fix the problem. So, let’s get going.

Reasons Your AC Won’t Turn On

air conditioner won't turn on

Before you get right into the solution you must know why is this happening. Otherwise, there is no point in looking for solutions aimlessly. So here are some reasons that cause your AC to not turn on.

  • Circuit Breaker Fails

This isn’t a problem with your AC itself. A circuit breaker is something that saves electronic appliances from bursting out due to electrical overload.

Whenever an electric appliance is consuming too much electricity at once the circuit breaker may go off.

This is a good thing for your AC because it saves the AC from getting damaged. However, this can be a cause that your AC isn’t turning on.

Since they consume a good amount of electricity, having an overload is common in them. So, when the circuit breaker for your AC goes off you can experience your AC not turning on.

  • Air Filter Clog

One of the most crucial maintenance tips for any AC is changing air filters now and then. So, when you take this for granted the air filter on your AC gets clogged.

Consequently, the airflow throughout your AC is disrupted.

When the air filter gets dirty, water droplets in your AC freeze. Then that leads to icing the coils. Now, this can be a reason that you are facing the issue of your ac not turning on.

And it’s the most common cause for times when the thermostat clicks but ac does not turn on. So, if that’s happening in your case then you can assume that the air filters are clogged.

  • Debris On Evaporator Coils

You know the basic AC function, right? It takes away the humidity of the room and fills it up with colder air.

While it’s taking away the warmth of the room it gets some dirt and dust along with it. These clouds of dust gather over time and make the evaporator coils dirty.

Now, your ac is filled with components that can easily get dirty. And once they reach their optimal level, they start malfunctioning. In turn, your ac stops working as well.  It will even prevent the AC to turn off.

  • Dirt In The Condenser Lines

When it’s about AC malfunction this is the most careful you have to be about. Because the condenser line can be damaged further from exterior sources.

And once it goes to that level your AC might go beyond any repairs.

Just like the air filters, the condenser lines can go full of debris. You might even see mold growing on them.

And, don’t get shocked when you see a bird or a mouse making this their habitat because it’s the perfect place for them. Once the condenser line fails to work properly the heat transfer and cooling mechanism gets wrecked on the ac.

As a result, it may not turn on.

  • Leaking Refrigerant

Normally, you won’t need to bother about refrigerant too much. But at times the leak in freon can cause leaking refrigerant.

One other thing that can happen to your refrigerant because of the leak is poison in the refrigerant.

When this happens the cooling mechanism of your AC gets hampered. Due to that, it may completely stop working and your air-con won’t turn on at all.

If it goes on for a long time it can completely damage your AC forever.

  • Malfunctioning Motor

If your ac isn’t turning on and making a noise then it’s probably the motor. When there are problems with the motor your ac won’t turn on at all.

As the motor is the driving force of your AC.

Sometimes the motor gets completely damaged. In times like that, there are no ways other than replacing the motor. And sometimes the motor is fixable.

You can check out if the motor will still work or not through a capacitor test.

  • Wiring Issues

You might not even notice this problem. But if you have a wiring issue at your home then it can cause the AC to not turn on.

And it’s not just about your AC, this can damage all of your electronic appliances in many different ways.

The quickest way to figure out if there is a wiring issue or not is to check up on other appliances. Usually, a wiring issue will affect multiple items in your household.

  • Thermostat Problems

Thermostat has complete control of your ac functions. It’s the driver who controls how your ac will work.

So, when the thermostat is broken it will affect the AC gravely.

Now, several things can go wrong with the thermostat. It can break, get damaged, or maybe outdated. Sometimes the batteries can run out.

No matter what happens anything wrong with the thermostat will result in your ac not turning on.

So, these are the typical reasons that your ac isn’t turning on. In most cases, you might not find DIY solutions. It’s because they are electrical components so working with them without knowing anything may go in the opposite direction.

Then, what can you do? Well, there are some things you can do to determine the problem. You have to figure out if the problem is at your home or in your ac.

And if it’s something you can pinpoint then opting for professional repair service will be much easier.

Things To Do When Your Air Conditioner Doesn’t Turn On

air conditioner won't turn off

Let me remind you these aren’t the solution to the problems. These will help you determine the exact reason why your air conditioner isn’t turning on.

So, you can tell the professionals what’s wrong with your ac and they can be prepared.

  1. Checking the Thermostat

The first and foremost thing to do is check your thermostat. Look for any external damage to the thermostat. Check the settings you put in the thermostat.

Check if the batteries are dead or not. Try to change the settings on the thermostat and see if they work out or not.

If you find the thermostat isn’t working properly, you will probably have to replace it.

  1. Checking The Filters

Check the air filter of your AC. Especially, if you haven’t changed it in a long time. Look, if there is too much dust and debris stuck in your air filter or not.

Because too much dust will lead the filters to suffocate and that can result in turning the AC off.

Try clearing out the dust and debris from the filters first. If that doesn’t work out you should replace the air filters completely.

  1. Circuit Breaker Tripping Or A Blown Fuse

A circuit breaker tripping or a blown fuse can be a reason for this problem. You have to check them individually if they are working properly or not.

For a tripped circuit breaker, you just have to turn it off and then on. But if it flips again and goes off you should take professional help.

Because this indicates that the AC unit is pulling electricity. And for the blown fuse you can simply replace it.

  1. Check The Condenser Lines And Coils

If these components are clogged with any dirt then your AC won’t turn on. So, naturally, you will have to unclog the systems that are affected.

Sometimes components may get damaged due to too much clogging. Then you should seek professional help.

  1. Check Up On The Icy Buildups

Since the function of the ac involves cooling and water there can be icy buildups here and there. Different components may have icy buildups on them.

Now, to clear up the icy buildups you will need to keep the system off for a while. It can take up to a day to clean the buildups.

While you are at it you should check up on the refrigerant, if it’s leaking then it can cause icy buildups as well. Your AC will be running but your house won’t be cooling if you don’t fix the leaking refrigerant issue quickly.

  1. Check Your Wiring

If you don’t find anything wrong with the AC unit itself then you should look for faulty wiring. Just check up on some other appliances in your home to find out.

These are some of the things you can do to determine the problems. As you can see you can solve some of them on your own.

But when it’s about replacing parts I highly recommend going for a professional electrician. Don’t try to do this on your own as you may damage the AC beyond repair unless you have some expertise on this.

And lastly, you should fix the stuck relay of your AC if it’s stuck.

How To Manually Turn On AC Unit?

Now, this is a subjective matter to talk about. If your AC has an option of using a button to turn it on then you can do this.

Usually, the button for manually turning on your ac unit may be hidden. So, how can you do it?

The easiest way has to be to go through the user manual to find out where the button is.

It may be inside the top cover of your ac that you can open. Or it can be on the sides or the back of your AC unit. Just find where the button is and press it.

This is the way to manually turn on the AC unit.

However, this will only work if your ac features the option to turn it on manually. Now, watch this video to learn a trick to turn on your AC manually.

Maintenance Tips For Your AC Unit 

The best way to avoid any kind of issues with your ac unit is through proper maintenance. If you maintain your AC unit regularly then you won’t have to face such issues.

Here are some maintenance tips for your AC unit-

  • Make sure to change your air filters now and then. The proper duration for changing the filters is at 3 months. You should change the air filters every three months or you should clean them routinely. Changing the filter is the more preferable option.
  • As your ac unit takes in the air inside your room, it takes dust and debris along with it. So, you have to make sure to clean the coils and internal components regularly. And it’s not just about the inside coils, you also have to consider the outside coils as well.
  • Sometimes the coil fins on the evaporator and condenser may bend very easily. All these issues usually result in blocking airflow. To make sure the airflow is uninterrupted you have to straighten the coil fins whenever you find them bent.
  • Try to keep your AC unit free of icy buildups. Icy buildups can eventually lead to your ac unit not working or turning on. To stop that from happening, you can keep it off for a day or for some hours to make sure there are no possible icy buildups.
  • Never neglect inefficiency in your air conditioning system. Any kind of inefficiency in the systems indicates that there is a problem with some of the components in your AC unit. So, as soon as you notice any inefficiency check up on the AC unit just like I discussed earlier.

Well, maintenance of an air conditioner doesn’t come easy. I suggest opting for a professional maintenance service regularly to have regular checkups on the unit. Trust me when I tell you this, it’s for the greater good.

Last Words 

See? Now you know why your air conditioner won’t turn on and what you can do about it. I believe in “prevention is better than cure” which is why I shared the maintenance tips with you.

In any kind of electronic appliance, proper maintenance can have a lot of impact on it. And in the case of an air conditioner, seek professional help for repair and maintenance.

Because when you try to DIY, it can go wrong. Hope this helps you with your AC problems.

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