An air conditioner was made to cool closed spaces, but when the fan isn't spinning, then you may have an issue with the internal mechanisms of your air conditioning system. In this article, we'll present the five most common reasons for why your AC unit fan is not spinning:
Why is the AC Fan Not Spinning?
Air conditioning systems have several components that work together to deliver the cool air to your room, and if one or multiple of these components are faulty, then your AC unit may malfunction, causing the fan to stop working.
- Tripped Circuit Breaker
The first possible cause you can check is a tripped circuit breaker. Check your service panel or breaker box, and locate the circuit breaker connected to your unit. There should be an on and off switch - flip the switch off, then turn it back on and see if that solves the problem.
If the circuit breaker for your AC keeps tripping, it may be overworked as the circuit breaker may not have been made to withstand the amperage from using your AC. Disconnect any appliances that use the same circuit breaker, or replace the current circuit breaker with a heavy duty one.
- Busted Fan Motor
One of the most common problems with your unit is with the AC fan motor. When the fan motor has worn down, overheated, or short circuited, it cannot deliver the cooled air into your room. This is often due to a poorly maintained or overworked air conditioner. You may need to replace the fan motor bearings, or replace the part entirely.
You will need the help of an experienced technician to diagnose and repair your condenser fan motor as this component is tricky to repair on your own. The technician will check whether the problem is with a busted fan motor or with another part of your AC unit before making the necessary fixes.
- Broken Fan Blades
Sometimes, the issue may lie in the fan blades that have broken off. You would often hear a clunking or whirring sound when this happens, and you will need to hire a professional to diagnose and fix the problem for you. Thankfully, broken fan blades are simple to fix with new parts. Consider having the whole unit inspected as well for maintenance.
You may check on the fan blades by removing the front cover of your unit. The fan blades would be positioned at the back of the unit, and you may need to remove the frame depending on your model. You can easily repair bent or folded fan blades by bending them back to their original position, but we recommend hiring a professional to avoid further damage.
- Broken or Faulty Belt
If your AC isn’t new, and the fan is suddenly not working or spinning erroneously, then the problem may lie with a broken or faulty belt. The fan belt wears down over time, and will need to be replaced.
You can replace the belt yourself if you’re skilled at repairing machineries, but we recommend letting the professionals handle it instead. To replace a fan belt, you will need to locate the belt in your unit, and make a diagram of its route. Make sure your AC is unplugged when you do this. Remove the broken belt, and loop the new belt through the same route to replace it.
- Capacitor Issues
The capacitor is what delivers energy and power to the motor, fan, and other components of the air conditioner. When the capacitors fail, then the unit will not function properly. Capacitors can wear down over time, and can be replaced by an HVAC technician long before you have capacitor issues.
You may check on the capacitor yourself if you have experience working with air conditioning systems. Turn off the condenser to cut the power from your unit. Once the unit is safely powered down, you can go ahead and open the access panel, check, and replace the capacitor. Disconnect all the wires from the old capacitor, and replace them with new ones as well.
- Dirty Air Filter
Your AC filter is the part that separates the dust from the air so the air blowing out of your unit is sure to be clean and free from dust particles. However, when the dust accumulates around this filter, it can cause blockage, and the air flow becomes restricted. Clean your AC filter regularly to prevent this problem.
To clean the air filter, follow the manufacturer’ instructions in removing the filter. Use a vacuum cleaner to clear the thick layer of dust on the filter, then wash the filter under running water. Use a soft-bristled brush to gently scrub away the remaining dirt with some liquid soap. Let the filter air dry completely before placing it back into your unit.
- Contactor Problems
The contactor switch helps the fan run by sending voltage through the different components of your unit. When this part breaks down, it can cause your fan to stop spinning, and your unit to malfunction. Have an HVAC professional check on your contactor, and replace the part as needed.
Repairing a contactor is a challenge to DIY, as there is a high risk for electrical shock if you’re not careful. Fixing this part of your air conditioning system will also require some knowledge of electrical wiring. You will need to disconnect the contactor from the unit, and solder a new one using the proper connections. You can also blow out any debris with compressed air.
3 Tips to Prevent Your AC Fan From Breaking Down
- Do Not Overuse AC Unit
Overusing your air conditioner greatly decreases the lifespan of the unit, and can be the cause of a tripped circuit breaker as the AC unit works overtime to deliver cool air to your room. If the circuit breaker box malfunctions, then so does the air conditioner's fan.
Overusing includes using the air conditioner for long hours without a cool down period, using one unit in a large room, or running the AC unit on its coolest, strongest settings for extended periods of time without maintenance.
- Get Professional Air Conditioner Services and Cleaning
Only experienced professionals should clean, diagnose, and repair your AC unit. There are times when you would be tempted to do the fix yourself to save up on maintenance costs, but improper repairs or cleaning can end up costing you more in the long run, and you may even need to replace your unit if the issues persist.
Additionally, it is incredibly dangerous to deal with the internal mechanisms of an air conditioning system if you are not an experienced HVAC technician. Schedule your unit’s maintenance at Luce Aircon, and our experienced technicians can clean, diagnose, and repair any aircon problems with your unit so you can keep enjoying that cool breeze without issues.
- Clean Your Air Filter Regularly
Proper maintenance of your filter will give you cleaner air, and prevent mold growth on the accumulated dust layer on the filter. You can clean your AC filter by , and washing the dust off with soap and running water:
STEP 1: First, make sure your AC is turned off and unplugged.
STEP 2: Open the filter cover of your AC unit.
STEP 3: Use a vacuum cleaner to clear the layer of dust on the filter.
STEP 4: Take the filter out, and wash out the remaining dirt with soap and water.
STEP 5: Use an old toothbrush to gently scrub out the dirt trapped between the fibers.
STEP 6: Let the filter dry completely before placing it back into the unit.
Maintaining Your AC Unit
Air conditioners require professional cleaning and maintenance every now and then to keep all functions working in good condition. Contact us today to talk to one of our knowledgeable technicians for any AC issues you may be experiencing.