air conditioner stink

Checking the operability of the air conditioner

A modern air conditioner is a technically complex device that is equipped with many functions. And this «newness» does not always play into the hands of the owner of the split system. After all, the more complex the equipment, the higher the probability that it will fail faster. If you have been using a split system for more than a year, you have probably asked the following questions: how to determine the degree of wear?; how to understand whether the device is working correctly?; how is the air conditioner checked?

We will try to answer the most popular questions about the performance of air conditioners. In this article, you will learn how to check the operation of the air conditioner and how to prevent many problems even at the installation stage.

Check at the installation stage

The main mistakes of McQuay air conditioners

The air conditioner can be checked not only during operation, but also at the installation stage. With a thorough check during installation, you can avoid many problems in the future.

In details

Here are some of the important nuances that you should pay attention to:

  • The evenness of the installation. The outdoor and indoor unit must be fixed strictly horizontally, use the building level when installing;

  • Gaskets-vibration dampers. Rubber gaskets designed to dampen excessive vibration must be installed between the bracket and the outdoor unit at the connection point;

  • The distance between the wall and the outdoor unit. The optimal indicator is 10-15 cm, not less;

  • The presence of a visor. If there is heavy snowfall or rain in your region, provide for the installation of a protective visor over the outdoor unit;

  • A specialized tool. Cutting, bending and rolling of copper pipes should be carried out with the help of a professional tool: a pipe cutter, a pipe bend and a spreader;

  • Vacuuming. Before refueling the freon, it is NECESSARY to vacuum the freon route;

  • Height difference. The outdoor and indoor unit can be installed with a height difference, but it should not exceed 3 meters;

  • Drainage system. During the operation of the device, a large amount of condensate is formed, which must be removed from the air conditioning system. The simplest and cheapest option is to remove the drainage tube to the street through a hole in the wall. But, if you do it wisely, the condensate must be removed to the sewer using a siphon;

  • Service availability. The air conditioner needs to be serviced regularly (cleaned, refueled, etc.). Therefore, the device must be directly accessible. This is especially true for the outdoor unit, if it is fixed on a high floor. If you have a balcony or loggia, it is better to install an external unit in the immediate vicinity;

Check during operation

air conditioner blows weakly

So, the air conditioner is installed and actively used for a year or more. Please note that the total service life of the split system decreases with each month of operation. No climate control equipment is capable of working indefinitely, and air conditioning will not be an exception.

Therefore, before each start of the use season, we recommend conducting a comprehensive check of the system to find out what condition it is in. next, we will tell you how to check the air conditioner for operability.

Close the windows in the room tightly, turn off the heating system (if this is not possible), turn off the forced ventilation systems. Wait for about an hour, then use the room thermometer to find out the air temperature indicator.

Next, turn the air conditioner into cooling or heating mode (depending on the time of year). Wait 20-30 minutes. During this time, the device should achieve a steady decrease/increase in the air temperature to the figure that you specified when setting the operating mode. To check this, use the same room thermometer.

If the temperature you set and the actual temperature in the room are different, then it is necessary to carry out a comprehensive maintenance of the air conditioner.


You can also check whether the compressor is working-one of the most important components of the split system. Put your hand on the outdoor unit, you should feel the vibration. Also put your hand on the blinds of the indoor unit. There should be a noticeable flow of air from there. If the cold mode is turned on, then the air must also be cooled.

When checking the various operating modes, remember that the air conditioner does not switch instantly. It takes him 10-15 minutes to switch from one mode to another. However, if more than 15 minutes have passed, most likely, the device is faulty or needs cleaning.

We also recommend listening to the device during operation. If you notice that the air conditioner is working too noisily or makes extraneous sounds that were not there before, this is an excuse to contact the service center.

The leakage of freon is almost impossible to check at home. But you may find an atypical nature of the operation of your air conditioner. For example, excessive or insufficient intensity of the air flow or sudden warm air flows during the cooling mode, and vice versa.

Private master or self-made cheking?

Anyway, the air conditioner begins to «report» serious breakdowns in advance. The device does not fail instantly. For several days, or even weeks, the air conditioner can emit atypical sounds, vibrate excessively, arbitrarily switch operating modes, etc. Anyway, with regular use, you will be able to notice possible breakdowns at the earliest stage.

In this situation, it is important to seek help in time. The best option is to order diagnostics at a large service center. Usually, such firms employ specialists with experience who can give a guarantee for their work. You can also resort to the help of private craftsmen. But here you need to be careful: choose a master with good reviews and an average market price for services.

Some owners of air conditioners are confident in their abilities, and therefore perform diagnostics with their own hands. They also resort to self-repair. We do not recommend carrying out such work if you do not have sufficient skills and experience. You can clean the indoor unit yourself, any owner can cope with this. But it is still better to entrust the rest of the work to a specialist.


The air conditioner on the facade of the house has long ceased to surprise passers-by. Thanks to technological progress, we have been able to buy and install an air conditioner, since the cost of such equipment is affordable for most families.

However, you should understand that air conditioning systems are just as susceptible to natural wear and tear as any other equipment. Sooner or later, the device may break down or completely fail.

To increase the service life of the air conditioner, some nuances need to be provided at the stage of installation of the system. Also, the device should be checked before each season of use. The air conditioner «informs» about many shortcomings in advance, so minor breakdowns can be easily noticed and eliminated.

Any other questions? Ask them in the comments below. You can also tell us about your experience with health checks. Share your experience, give some tips for beginners. They will be useful for many readers of our site. We wish you good luck!

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