A/C Won’t Turn On

Isn’t it frustrating if the A/C won’t turn on? This is especially the case on a hot day and you are expecting some guests at home or during summer nights when you cannot sleep comfortably. To avoid frustration, it will help if you know the problem. Luckily, there is no need to be a trained technician just so that you can point out what is wrong.

In the rest of this post, we will briefly go through some of the reasons why the A/C will not power on. Most of the problems can be simple and can even be fixed on your own. However, if you are unsure of what to do, it is best to consult professional services to avoid the problem from getting worse.

A/C Won’t Turn On

What is the Problem?

Thermostat Problems

This is one of the most common problems and also one that is easiest to solve. Considered as the brain of the entire system, the thermostat is the one that is responsible for controlling the cooling functions of the AC. If the setting is wrong, expect that the unit will not turn on or the cooling will be impaired.

An easy solution is to choose COOL instead of HEAT. In some cases, you will have to replace the batteries to be sure that the thermostat is working fine. In this modern days, most thermostats have innovative features and design, making it easier to prevent their failure to deliver optimal functionality.

Faulty Wiring

If humans have veins where blood flows, appliances have wires where electricity flows. Therefore, if the wires are problematic, expect that there will also be issues with how the unit will work. At its worst, the unit will not turn on.

The easy solution to this problem is to have a quick inspection of the wires to be sure that they are not damaged. Be cautious in doing this as there is obviously a threat of electrocution. See to it that the wires have proper connections. A multimeter can also be used to be sure that there is electricity flowing in the wires.

Dirty Filters

A filter is an important part of the AC as it screens out dirt and impurities to maintain the peak performance of the appliance. When it gets dirty and clogged, the AC may continue running but without providing a cooling effect in the room. When the problem is worse, the unit will no longer turn on.

Fortunately, changing the filter is a task that is almost effortless. Look for a filter that is appropriate for your AC. As much as possible, replace the filter once every month. Nonetheless, this should depend on the usage of the appliance.

Issues with the Circuit Breaker

Similar to the wires, the circuit breaker is an important part of the cooling system because it supplies the electricity that is needed for the appliance to run. If the circuit breaker is tripped or broken, this will cause the AC to not turn on at all since there is no electricity. You should consult with an electrician to determine the right circuit breaker for the appliance to prevent overloading.

Look for the electrical panel and find the circuit breaker. Perform a close inspection and see to it that it is not blown, burnt, or tripped, among other external damages that are possible. Turn the breaker off and turn it on again. If it still does not work, get in touch with a technician since the breaker might need a replacement.

Clogged Condensate Drain Line

The condensate drain line has the main responsibility of carrying the condensation from the AC to the outside of your house. This is the reason why in many instances, there is water dripping out of the unit. If it is clogged, the water will not get out of the AC. It can overflow, affect other components, and prevent the appliance from turning on.

For a DIY solution to unclog the condensate drain line, you will need to have a wet/dry vacuum. Look for the drain line, which you can find from the outside of your house. connect the hose of the vacuum to the drain line and turn it on. After about three minutes, liquid from the inside will be drained and there will no longer be any clog.

Low Refrigerant Level

While there are many components that will make it possible for the AC to cool any space, one of the most important is the refrigerant. They will be running in a series of closed-circuit tubes, where it changes state. In some instances, there could be holes or cracks in the tubes, which will cause leaks, and hence, you will end up with a shortage of refrigerant. This will lead to the tripping of the low-pressure switch and the AC will turn off.

It will be best to get in touch with a pro to check the level of refrigerant in your AC. If it is detected to be below normal, the pro can also be the one to replace the refrigerant. This is quite complicated, so leave it in the hands of the experts. Also, the source of a leak will also need to be identified so that it can be sealed accordingly.


In sum, if the A/C won’t turn on, the problem can be one of the issues that have been discussed above. You might have chosen the wrong thermostat setting or there are components that are damaged, such as the circuit breaker. It can also be because of a dirty air filter, low level of refrigerant, or a clogged condensate drain line.

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