Eliminate Common Portable Air Conditioner Problems and Get Cooled Relief
Portable air conditioners can provide a great solution for those hot, humid summer days, when you don’t have access to central air. However, like any appliance, your portable air conditioner can run into problems. The following are four of the more common portable air conditioner problems, and how to solve them.
The first and most common problem is that the unit isn’t plugged in or the outlet isn’t receiving power. This is a simple fix, as you should check that the unit is indeed plugged in, and if it is, check the outlet with a voltmeter to be sure it is receiving power. Additionally, you should check that the power cord is free of any damage.
The next thing to check for is if your unit is on a timer. A timer shutdown can cause your unit to work intermittently or not at all, so you’ll want to verify that the timer settings are correct. In addition, if the ambient temperature is lower than desired, your unit may not turn on or will shut off quickly.
The third problem is that the unit might be too small, i.e. insufficient BTU rating, for the size of the room you are trying to cool. Portable air conditioners are sized according to their BTU rating, so if you have a large room or a room with high ceilings, you’ll need a higher BTU rating. The wrong BTU rating will lead to the unit cycling on and off, or never cooling down the room.
Finally, if your room is still feeling warm after the air conditioner has been running for thirty to sixty minutes, it is likely that the unit has a lack of airflow due to a dirty filter, frost on the evaporator coils, or the growth of mold or mildew. A dirty filter is easy to fix, as you should just need to follow the instructions in your manual to remove it and clean it. If frost is present, you’ll want to turn off the unit and let it defrost. As for the presence of mold and mildew, you’ll want to wear a mask, and then use a cleaner specifically designed for removing mold and mildew to give the unit a thorough cleaning.
In the end, if none of the aforementioned solutions fix the problem, you might have to purchase a new unit or call in a professional. However, with proper maintenance and care in the offseason, a portable air conditioner should provide years of reliable service.