How to identify if your AC system is running properly

An air conditioning unit is perfect for those hot and humid days, but how do you know if it is functioning correctly? If your AC system is making any noises or you notice the fan is not going as fast as it should, you must check your entire unit. Regularly inspecting your system can prevent any further issues from unattended problems. 

Is It Making Any Noises? 

Most AC units will not make much noise if any. The most noise you should hear from your AC unit is the movement of air from out the top of the condenser. These noises are signs that your AC unit is working correctly. If your air conditioner makes an unusual noise, that is a classic indicator that something is wrong.

If your AC unit is overly loud, you should look into it. Also check furnace for weird noises. With many moving parts, electronics, and processes, your AC unit has ample room to fail. Several different noises can mean other things. However, it does not always mean bad. Some noises your AC system makes are good and can signal that the system is working correctly. 

You should however, service your AC system immediately if it is making a humming/buzzing sound. It means that your fan motor capacitor has failed and will need to be replaced. If this has failed, you may notice that the fan blades are not spinning with the AC is turned on. This can damage your system, so it’s important to get your AC serviced immediately.

You do not have to freak out every time your AC system makes an unusual noise, though you should keep an eye on it. Keeping a close eye on your AC system with routine maintenance can prevent several issues.

Inspect the Air Filter 

Your air filter is the next thing you should inspect when verifying that your AC system is working correctly. Changing the air filter of your AC unit can be easy and cheap.

You can quickly inspect your air filter by first locating your air filter. The most crucial step is finding the air filter’s location. The air filter is commonly near a return vent,within your AC system, or in a filter box next to the furnace or air handler. Every AC system is different. If you cannot locate your air filter, you can refer to the owner’s manual, which will usually tell you where to find the air filter. 

If your air filter is moderately dirty, it is time for a new one. You should replace your air filter roughly every three months in winter. In the summertime, you may want to replace it more often due to more dust and dirt in the air. 

How often you should replace your filter depends on your location as well. A quick inspection of your air filter can prevent many future issues. Once you have found the air filter’s location, you can start by pulling the air filter out. 

Replacing your air filter is as easy as 1, 2, 3! All you need to do is yank the old one out and position a new one in the same way. After placing it in the slot, give the filter a good tap to ensure it is in place. 

Is your AC System Cooling your home? 

The most important feature of an air conditioning system is that it cools your house. A telltale sign that your AC unit is not correctly working is that your home is not at a lower temperature than the outside temperature. If your AC is not keeping your house cool, you should try a few things before calling a technician. 

Check the Fan and Blower on your Unit

First, check your air conditioning unit’s fan and the blower motor. If your fan is still running, you will be able to hear the whirring of the blades. Look closely at your AC unit for signs of damage or improper function. Specific things to watch out for are rattling noises, slow-moving blades or continuous rotation of the blades even when the AC is off, or no response to turning on your unit. 

Next, check the blower on your AC unit or in your air handler. Place your hand above the unit. If you feel air movement from the blower, your blower is working. You should be able to hear a whirring sound as well. You may be in trouble if you do not feel air movement and hear no noise. 

When your AC system has an issue with the fan, it is hard to tell if it is the capacitor or the fan itself causing the problems. However, if it is making a buzzing/humming sound, it means that the capacitor has failed and/or the motor is seized. Refer to your specific owner’s manual for more information on determining whether it is the fan or the capacitor. 


In closing, there are several ways to verify that your AC system is running correctly, like if it is making noise or checking the fan and blower. You must check on your AC system regularly to ensure that your system is always functioning right. Whether you need to change out the air filter or call a technician, the sooner you find the issue, the better.