AC Not Turning On? Here’s How to Reset an AC

Air conditioner stopped working? There are times when you can fix issues with an AC on your own, but doing so is quite risky. Here are our instructions on how to perform a DIY AC reset.

If you’ve ever approached someone who works in IT and asked them why your computer isn’t working, they might have answered your question by saying, “Have you tried restarting it?” Like other home equipment, air conditioners are becoming smarter and may sometimes need a press of the HVAC reset button to get back in working shape. However, if you aren’t able to do this yourself, hiring an HVAC contractor is always your best bet. 

In this article, we’ll show you how to reset an AC unit without breaking it. 


Resetting the Air Conditioner: 5 Ways to Reset Your AC Unit

Installing an air conditioning system is critical for safety, productivity, and comfort; however, one of the most frustrating experiences is when it stops working. In your case, perhaps the air conditioner is making noises like it’s up and running, but the air coming out of the vents is still warm. 

You might also have to deal with a situation where the fan won’t turn on despite no matter how low you set the thermostat, even if it’s a forced-air system. In either scenario, resetting the air conditioner may sometimes restore it to its previous operating state. 

But how do I reset my AC unit? Let’s find out.

Use the Reset Button on AC Unit

If your air conditioner has stopped working, it may be because the compressor isn’t activating the electrical system. Don’t worry; the reset button might be able to solve the issue after a sudden disconnection or power outage. You can press the “Reset” button on the air conditioning unit, often shown as a small red button, to bring your air conditioning unit back to life.

Where is the reset button on the air conditioning unit? In most cases, the button will be located on the outer unit. If you cannot find the reset button outside, the manual that came with the device likely has information pertinent to your search.

Reset from the Isolator Switch

If you have a recent AC model, the isolator switch might be located between the equipment and the main electrical supply. The purpose of an isolator is to improve the safety of the electrical system during maintenance and repairs. After finding the isolator, you will need to turn it off and wait for 30 minutes, enabling the device to discharge any accumulated electrostatic charge. After half an hour, you can try turning the lever again, and your AC should begin operating normally.

Reset Your Circuit Breaker

If the isolator method doesn’t work in your favor, try your luck with the circuit breaker. How to reset AC circuit breaker? Often located in the basement, the side of the house, or somewhere outdoors, the breaker is a box that usually has one large switch and many smaller switches, each controlling a different circuit in your home. The majority of breakers will include a label that describes the precise connection. Find the one that says “AC,” and turn off the power. If there is no label, reset all the switches at once.

Reset AC Using the Thermostat

If none of the above mentioned measures work, the next potential step is resetting the thermostat. Depending on the temperature measurements, the thermostat sends a signal to your AC to begin cooling the air and reducing heat. If it is faulty, it is possible that your air conditioning unit will not function at all. Before you opt for an air conditioner reset, removing the batteries from the device first is essential. If your thermostat is malfunctioning, you should have it replaced by a trained professional as soon as possible.

Restarting the Air Conditioner 

While air conditioners function as they should all year long, they can experience issues at some point, forcing you to try all possible measures, including pressing the reset button on AC unit outside. Luckily, this involves just a few standard steps:

  1. Turn Off the Unit: Power down your AC but ensure the thermostat is off.
  2. Find the Circuit Breaker Box: Find the breaker and turn off the switch that controls the power to your AC.
  3. Wait It Out: Wait approximately 60 seconds before turning off the power to your AC.
  4. Confirm It’s Working: The next step in restarting the air conditioner is to set the thermostat to the desired temperature and wait a few minutes. 
  5. The Final Step: If you notice cool air coming from the vents, the AC unit is working properly and is in good condition.

We’ve outlined all there is to know about how to reset an air conditioning unit, which leads us onto the next question! 

How Often Do You Reset an Air Conditioner?

Generally, when it comes to pressing the reset button on air conditioning unit, having to do so excessively may indicate a more serious issue at hand. Similarly, continually pressing the reset button on your AC unit might actually worsen the situation, so don’t do that. Having said that, if your breaker trips more than once, we recommend not continuing with the air conditioner reset. 

We Know How to Reset an AC or Fix Any of Your AC-Related Issues

So there you have it: the answer to the question, “How to reset an AC.” Fortunately, having to reset an AC is not too complicated; however, there are times when it’s better to leave it to the professionals like Blue Valley Heating & Cooling. With over 30 years of experience working as an HVAC contractor, we know how to reset an air conditioner or fix any AC-related issues you may have. For any inquiries, questions or comments contact Blue Valley Heating & Cooling today!

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