How to Identify Refrigerant Leaks in Your AC

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Refrigerant leaks are among the most dangerous problems that your air conditioner can face. Air conditioners are not designed to consume refrigerant during operation, but to recycle it back and forth to move heat out of the house. The initial charge of refrigerant that an air conditioner receives upon installation is meant to last for its entire lifespan. A refrigerant leak will deprive the system of the fluid that it needs to operate, causing it to develop a number of problems eventually culminating in a breakdown. Let’s take a look at how you can identify refrigerant leaks in your air conditioner.

Drops in Output

The lower the refrigerant level in your air conditioner is, the less heat it will be able to remove from the home. Most refrigerant leaks are small, so the rate at which refrigerant leaves the system will be pretty slow. This will cause a slow-but-steady decline in your air conditioner’s output over time. If it seems like your air conditioner is not conditioning as well as it was even a couple of months ago, you may have a refrigerant leak.

Bubbling/Hissing Noises

One of the best ways to determine whether your air conditioner is suffering any problems is by listening for strange noises. As refrigerant drains out of your air conditioner through the leak, air bubbles will form in the refrigerant line. This will generate hissing and bubbling noises while your air conditioner is running.

Dirty Spots on the Line

You can always examine the refrigerant line yourself, if you really want to be thorough about detecting leaks. Refrigerant tends to attract dirt, so any leak in the refrigerant line will often appear oily or dirty. If you notice this, have a professional take a closer look to see if there are any leaks.

Bell Plumbing and Heating provides air conditioner repair services in Denver, CO.

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