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Should I Fix My Thermostat Myself?

Your thermostat is one of the most integral parts of your home’s heating, air conditioning, and ventilation systems. If you don’t have a working thermostat, chances are good that none of these systems will work at all, and if they do you’ll still have extremely limited control. So what happens when your thermostat starts acting strangely or your heater or air conditioner begins functioning erratically? Odds are, that means it’s time for a repair. Bus can you make this repair on your own? It’s not advised that you try.

It Might Not Be the Thermostat

You may be tempted to think the problem lies in your thermostat, but you may be surprised that your thermostat isn’t the issue at all. HVAC systems are extremely complex, and without the skill and experience that a professional has, you could easily make a mistake in diagnosing the issue. It’s easy to think that your thermostat is the issue preventing your system from turning on, but only a professional can take a look at your system and quickly tell you whether or not the problem actually lies somewhere else. A system that fails to start may also be caused by a broken blower fan motor, an electrical relay that’s gone bad, or an overflow in the condensate pan. If you’re not aware of these as potential issues, it’s likely that you won’t discover them.

Basic Troubleshooting

While it’s strongly advised, you may not wish to call an HVAC professional at the first sign of trouble with your HVAC system. That’s fine, in fact there are numerous repairs you can perform on your HVAC system on your own with little to no skill requirement at all. The first step is to do some basic troubleshooting to figure out if your thermostat is the problem or if the issue lies deeper in the system itself.

First, check your home’s circuit breaker panel and make sure the switch hasn’t been tripped. You may see a display on your digital thermostat still, but that doesn’t mean it lies on the same circuit as your HVAC system itself. If your air conditioner doesn’t turn on, you may have tripped the circuit, so check this before moving on.

If that isn’t the issue, then you’ll want to run a check on your system. To do this, flip your system to the opposite of what you’re trying to get and crank the system up to high (i.e. if your air conditioner isn’t turning on, flip over to your heater and turn it all the way up). If the system fires up, then you have isolated the problem to the system you were trying to use before. If it still doesn’t turn on, then your thermostat is most likely the issue.

If you have a digital thermostat like most modern homes, you may have a dead battery. If the display on your thermostat is shut off entirely, then the first thing you should do is pop the front cover off and change the battery inside. This is also a good time to use a dry, clean paintbrush to dust over the components inside your thermostat that have likely gotten dusty over months of use.

If the system still doesn’t turn on after this, then you likely are experiencing an even bigger problem and should consult with a professional technician. You can go fiddling around inside your thermostat, but unless you know what you’re looking for and how to repair it when you do, odds are you could end up simply making your problem worse. Having a professional inspect and diagnose your system can also pinpoint if your thermostat is in fact the problem in the first place, or if something more serious lies at the root of the issue.

When you are having issues with your thermostat, Phoenix Air Conditioning, LLC can have your issue diagnosed and fixed quickly or you don’t pay. Since 1995, our Palm Beach County air conditioning technicians have provided high-quality repairs and exceptional service to residents all across the cities of Palm City, West Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, and more! All members of our team are highly-trained and held to the highest standards of ethical business practices. We also offer 24/7 availability for emergency repairs because we understand that not all breakdowns wait to happen during business hours.

Need a thermostat repair? Call Phoenix Air Conditioning, LLC today at 888.660.4337 and schedule a service!
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