If lightning strikes your air conditioner during a storm, this could spell serious trouble for your electrical system. Think of a lightning strike like a car accident. Depending on the severity, you may notice a difference in your air conditioner right away after a lightning strike. Or the damage could be mild enough that it creeps up on you over the course of the next several months, so you don’t really know the true damage until long after the incident takes place.
No matter when you start to feel the effects of a lightning strike on your HVAC system, Ambient Edge can help. Call us at (888) 240-8283 to schedule your service call, and if you decide to hire us for the repair, then your service call is absolutely free. So what do you have to lose? Call now!
Preventing Damage to Your Air Conditioner During a Storm
The best way to prevent damage to your air conditioner during a storm is simply to turn it off at the first sound of thunder. This may sound like the absolute worst suggestion when it’s unbearably hot outside, but it’s worth it to suffer for a little while to save your AC unit from severe damage.
While powering down your AC may not help the unit itself if it does end up getting struck, you may be able to enjoy damage control insofar as the lightning going through your air conditioning unit to your electrical system. Plus, the damage to the unit itself may be less severe, which may only result in a repair rather than a full-blown replacement.
You may also want to invest in surge protectors throughout your entire home, and surge suppressors between your appliances and your electrical outlets. These help to minimize the damage lightning can do and potentially save your investments from being totaled during a storm.
How Lightning Can Damage an Air Conditioning Unit
Lightning is a powerful force that can wreak serious havoc on your air conditioner. There are several things that can happen as the result of lightning striking your AC unit. Some of these damages may include:
- Capacitor: The capacitor is the most likely part to become damaged from a lightning strike, which can cause both minor and major subsequent issues, including the failure of your compressor.
- Compressor: The compressor is the sneakiest part because it is one of the most expensive to fix, and it can take weeks or even months to detect any lightning-related problems with it.
- Fuses: Lightning can damage your electrical lines, which can cause your breaker to trip and/or your fuses to burn.
- Wires: Lightning can burn the wires in your electrical unit, causing it to fail.
Determining Whether Your Air Conditioner Suffered Lightning Damage
You’ve turned your AC unit off at the first sign of thunder, and now that the storm has passed, how would you even be able to tell if your unit suffered any damage during the storm?
The first thing you should do is make a note somewhere of the date and time of the storm. You’ll need this later if you have any future issues with your unit. If you observe any obvious damage, take pictures or videos of it for further documentation.
If there is no obvious damage, check the unit’s thermostat. If it’s off, try turning it back on. If that doesn’t work, then double-check your circuit breaker and attempt to replace the battery. Even if the circuit breakers are on, switch them off, then switch them back on again to reset them. If, after you replace the battery, the thermostat still won’t turn on, that’s when you’ll need to call a professional to come take a look at the problem.
If the thermostat does turn on, set the temperature to “fan” and make sure it comes on simultaneously with the condenser. If not, then you’ll need someone to take a look. Even if you don’t have any lightning damage, your unit may be suffering from an unrelated issue that still needs a professional to diagnose and fix.
Was Your Air Conditioner Hit by Lightning? Don’t Worry – Call Ambient Edge for Help!
You don’t want to mess with Mother Nature, especially lightning. When you hear a storm is brewing, or if there’s an imminent storm in the forecast, switch off your air conditioner to try to mitigate any potential damage. If you’re too late, and/or if your unit suffers damage anyway, no problem. Ambient Edge can take a look and determine what your next step should be.
Give us a call at (888) 240-8283, or send us a message on our website, and we’ll be glad to come over at our next available opportunity to check out your air conditioner. Sure, it’s no fun to turn off your air conditioner on a hot day, but the misery can last even longer if your unit goes on the fritz. Call Ambient Edge today and get a head-start on repairing your AC unit before the situation gets worse!