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3 Things That Can Go Wrong If Your Air Conditioner Isn't Level

August 23, 2021

Whether you’re installing a new air conditioner or wanting to maximize your current one, having it level is important.

Air conditioners are often placed on concrete pads. As time passes, the pad could crack, shift or sink. This can cause malfunctions and even premature failure. Let’s go over some of the malfunctions that can happen and how to fix an air conditioner that isn’t level.

1. Damaged Compressor

Your air conditioner’s compressor is a critical component. As its name implies, it compresses liquid refrigerant that has turned into gas as it absorbs heat from your home. Once the compressor exhausts heat under pressure, the refrigerant becomes liquid again.

The compressor needs oil to run properly. If your air conditioner isn’t level, its oil could be distributed unequally.

This can cause:

  • Compressor damage due to grinding parts.
  • A compressor that’s too hot.
  • More expensive energy bills due to less efficient cooling.

The compressor is one of the most expensive components to replace on your air conditioner. If it breaks, you’re better off doing air conditioning installation because of this part’s cost.

2. Rust and Mold

Water naturally occurs during the cooling process. Your air conditioner removes moisture from the air as it cools your house. This moisture drains into a pan and then out via a line.

If your air conditioner isn’t level, water might end up pooling in the pan instead of draining away. This can lead to:

  • Water pooling around the air conditioner.
  • Rust and mold.
  • Damaged coils, which won’t be able to get rid of heat as efficiently.
  • More expensive energy costs due to less efficient cooling.

3. More Wear and Tear

If your air conditioner isn’t level, it might vibrate excessively. This can cause annoying sounds when running and even require air conditioning repair.

Too much vibration could:

  • Place more strain on parts and wear them out quicker.
  • Shake loose refrigerant lines and create an expensive refrigerant leak.
  • Make your air conditioner sink even more.
  • Eventually wear out your air conditioner much sooner.

How to Level an Air Conditioner Pad

Leveling an air conditioner pad takes experience. It’s usually not a job you’ll want to tackle on your own, because your air conditioner may need to be temporarily disconnected. This requires the help of a certified HVAC technician.

If you’re worried your air conditioner is sinking and creating problems, give Contra Costa Heating & AC a call at 510-343-9841. We’ll inspect your air conditioner for any damage and then determine the best way to get it level again.