Why Your Air Conditioner Has Weak Airflow

The air conditioner is working best when it is able to distribute cool air throughout the house. Unfortunately, problems with your heating and cooling system can leave you starved of fresh and cool air. Below are some of the reasons you might experience weak airflow from your AC.

Blocked Air Register

Supply air registers deliver cool air to different parts of the house. Someone can accidentally block the registers, for example, when redecorating the room. Artwork, furniture, and other large items are common culprits for the blockage. The blockage will reduce air flowing into the room.

Closed Damper

Some AC vents have dampers, a flat material or plate, that control the volume of air flowing through the registers. The dampers open or close to regulate airflow, depending on the cooling demands. An accident or malfunction can leave a damper in a closed position even when you need good airflow.

Dirty Air Filters

An AC has at least one air filter, though some even have multiple filters. The filters clean the air that goes into the system for cooling. Over time, the trapped debris blocks the filter's holes and restricts airflow. Restricted airflow means less air will be flowing through the ducts and registers.

Air Handler Malfunction

The air handler part of your AC is responsible for circulating air throughout the house. The air handler has an electrical motor that runs a fan for blowing air into the supply ducts. A malfunction in the air handler can affect the volume of air the AC can supply. This might be the case, for example, if the motor is not running as usual or if something has damaged the fan blades.

Duct Damage or Blockage

Damage or blockage of the supply ducts can also restrict air flowing into some rooms. Such restriction can occur if:

  • A section of the ductwork is disconnected.
  • Something has crashed the ductwork.
  • The ductwork has a crack that is leaking air.

In short, anything that reduces the effective volume of the ductwork reduces the volume of air it can supply to the relevant rooms.

Frozen Evaporator Coil

Lastly, ice on the evaporator coil also restricts air supply throughout the house. The evaporator is responsible for cooling air that flows through its coils. If the coil is frozen, the ice will block airflow, and the ducts and registers won't have adequate air to distribute.

Some of the problems that cause weak airflow are things you can handle. Others, such as air handler problems, require the touch of a professional technician. If you're not sure why your air conditioner has weak airflow, talk to an AC repair company in your area.