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Kilowatt Heating, Air Conditioning and Electrical Blog

Common Amateur AC Repair Mistakes


We know homeowners often look for ways to save money when it comes to taking care of their house, which is why they often go in for “do-it-yourself” work or have a friend help out with projects. But repairing an air conditioning system isn’t a job for amateurs. Unless you have professional training and certification in HVAC, you shouldn’t attempt an AC repair yourself. Nor should you entrust the job to anyone who claims they can make the repairs but don’t have the licensing or training to back up that claim. When an amateur quotes you a cheap price, you’ll get what you pay for!

We have a long history handling air conditioning repair in Studio City, CA and throughout Los Angeles and the Valley. We’ve often seen air conditioning systems have their lives shortened because of amateur repair mistakes. To help you understand why it’s best to leave this work to the pros, we’ll go over a short list of the common mistakes amateurs make with AC repairs.

Overcharging an AC when fixing refrigerant leaks

Leaking refrigerant from an air conditioner is one of the most frequent HVAC problems. Professionals know how to approach this repair: locate the leaks, seal them, then recharge the refrigerant to its factory level. Where amateurs often mess up this process (if they even get the first parts right) is the refrigerant recharge. Rather than restoring the factory-set level, they overcharge the AC with too much refrigerant. This is catastrophic, as it can lead to the compressor failing when liquid refrigerant gets inside it. Professionals have to bleed out the excess to restore the proper charge. 

Bad electrical connections

If you have an AC that’s frequently tripping the circuit breaker after an amateur “repair,” the problem may be that the amateur made a mistake reconnecting the AC to the power source after completing the job. They might also have rewired something on the control board incorrectly.

Bad soldering on the control board

Speaking of the control board, it’s a common source of AC repair issues. Professionals know how to correctly navigate the control board to tighten connections and make other repairs. Amateurs will often clumsily solder wires on the control board to provide a quick—but ineffective—fix. We’ve seen far too many control boards ruined because of bad soldering. 

Mismatched thermostat

If an amateur recommends updating your thermostat to fix comfort issues in your house, you may end up with a new thermostat that doesn’t match your current HVAC system. Amateurs will often recommend new installations like this as a way to get money, so the replacement may not even be necessary. A mismatched thermostat will make your AC inefficient and less effective, and it may even end up harming the equipment.

Fire hazards

People don’t think of air conditioners as “dangerous” appliances—but an amateur mistake can make them so! Any botched job on the electrical components of an AC can make the system a fire hazard. This is probably the best reason to only rely on professionals.

Kilowatt Heating, Air Conditioning and Electrical serves Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. Schedule service with us today for quality professional air conditioning repair.

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