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“My AC Compressor Failed! What Do I Do?”


If you’ve been reading our blog for a while, you might have seen us refer to the thermostat of your HVAC system as the brain of the system. If it fails, you lose all control of your air conditioner and cannot possibly get it to function and cool your home properly. Fortunately, thermostats are relatively easy to replace, and affordable as well, when compared to other AC components.

Take the compressor, for example. This is considered the “heart” of your air conditioner. Unfortunately, when this component fails, the fix is typically an expensive one. And your air conditioner can’t do any part of its job with a failed compressor. Because this is such an essential component, actually, homeowners have an important decision to make if theirs fails. Read on as we uncover what your options are at this point, and if you’ve come across this problem give our team a call for further guidance.

Option #1: Replace the Compressor

It seems like this would logically be the best option, right? It’s the least expensive and quickest fix. And it’s true, in some situations, this is the best option!

What you need to consider, however, is if your air conditioner is still under warranty. This typically means that the system is under 10 years old. If the system is still under warranty, then you’re not financially liable for replacing it—you’ll only need to pay for the labor.

In most cases, when a compressor fails it’s because the air conditioner has aged considerably and this component is simply worn out. Broken down compressor problems often happen when an AC system is 15 years old or more. Purchasing a new compressor may be too expensive to make it worth it. You probably want to explore one of the options we’ve mentioned below.

Option #2: Replace Just the Outdoor Condenser

If your air conditioner hasn’t had any other components suffer from failures recently and your air conditioner is still on the newer side, then this might be a good option for you. This is not a great option when you have an older indoor unit that’s suffered from problems before. This mismatching of your air conditioner can result in problems that will lead to premature system replacement anyway.

Option #3: Replace the Outdoor Condenser and Evaporator Coil

This means you’re replacing the entire air conditioner, aside from perhaps the ductwork (this is a good time to check on the shape of your air ducts!) Replacing the evaporator coil in addition to the outdoor condenser unit will afford you a new system warranty from the manufacturer, in which case you don’t have to worry if something goes amiss in the next 5-10 years, depending on the length of the warranty.

This also ensures improved energy efficiency and helps the system perform in a more environmentally friendly matter since you’ll be replacing outdated R22 refrigerant by default. A brand new system in many cases is going to be the most cost-efficient decision you can make when the compressor fails.

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Chicago AC services!

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