When to Replace an Air Conditioner Compressor

Replacing an air conditioner compressor is often a complicated and expensive job. If your AC system is around 15 years old or older, replacing the central air conditioning system may be more cost-effective in the long run. But if the rest of the system is still in good shape and the compressor is still under warranty, replacing the component can be a good option. We’ll explain some other instances when it could be practical to do so.

The Contractor Has Determined the Compressor Is Faulty

Make sure the AC contractor verifies that the compressor has failed. Some will just say there’s a bad compressor to make a profit. Only after a complete inspection and diagnosis should you agree to the work. Also, ask to confirm the findings with the technician and their field supervisor. And don’t be afraid to get a second opinion from another company.

It’s Time to Replace the Indoor Coil

If the air handler is no longer working properly, it will likely need to be replaced (especially if it’s approaching 15 years old). Replacing the indoor and outdoor units together can avoid various problems. It also ensures the components match, meaning they can run without any strain that can shorten a compressor’s life. 

Other reasons to consider replacing both include:

  • Newer components are much more energy efficient.
  • One installation visit, rather than two, results in lower upfront costs.
  • You’ll get a new warranty on the entire system.

When Your Compressor Shows Signs of Trouble

The leading signs that you have a failing compressor include:

  • Electrical Malfunctions: An electrical malfunction can cause the compressor to shut down suddenly. Resetting the circuit breaker may help. But repeated electrical failures can damage the compressor beyond repair, so replacement may be needed after several successive problems.
  • Low Refrigerant: If the refrigerant level is low and your AC is taking longer to cool things off, the compressor may be overworking. While checking and filling refrigerant in time can avoid air conditioning compressor replacement, waiting too long can result in compressor failure. The suction pipes, which help coolant travel through the coils, can malfunction, straining the compressor to the brink of failure.
  • The Compressor Is Dirty: Being outdoors, an AC compressor is prone to picking up dirt, leaves, and other things. Without regular cleaning and maintenance, dirt, debris, and foreign objects can cause the compressor to overheat and fail. Contaminated coils can reduce compressor life as well.
  • Unusual Noise: Rather than the AC unit’s usual hum, you’ll hear a chattering or tickling noise if the compressor is having difficulty turning on and off, like when a relay is failing. If the noise is like a rattling or rumbling, the compressor’s mounts or motor may be failing. 
  • The AC System Isn’t Working Right: Since the compressor generates cold air, there will be less airflow if it’s not functioning properly. Only warm air may blow from the vents. If the unit vibrates during startup or refrigerant is leaking from it, don’t hesitate to call a technician to come and replace the air conditioner compressor.

Call Air Force Heating & Air Today

Our team is trusted for high-quality HVAC services in and around LaGrange and Columbus, Georgia. When you suspect that your air conditioning compressor may be on the fritz, let our trained technicians diagnose the issue and resolve the problem. We perform emergency repairs, promptly fix ACs with the latest tools and equipment, and will replace your compressor if necessary. Call 706-810-2124 or book an appointment now.