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Mike G.
Mike G., Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 6981
Experience:  Proven Professional 46 years Experience
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Two weeks ago my AC stopped cooling the house even though the

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Two weeks ago my AC stopped cooling the house even though the fan continued to run. I called the AC guy. He said the circuit breaker was tripped (nothing else in the house was affected). We both noticed the lights in the kitchen dimming & he said NIPSCO (power company) something varies the current because of electrical demand. He checked the unit and cleaned and said all was ok. Tonight the same thing happened after a bad storm. Again, nothing else in the house was affected. So, I reset the circuit breaker and thought I heard a 'pop' upstairs in the kitchen. I reset the breaker again (it has nothing else on it-just two breakers for the AC) and it began cooling again. I raised the thermostat so the AC wouldn't run and AC off. So, what do I do?
Hi, I'm Mike and I'll be glad to assist you. If the only circuit that is tripping is the A/C, then the issue is related to only that circuit. The nameplate has the amperage the unit operates at and from that requirement the circuit is sized. If it is as it should be, then there are several possibilities. 1) bad breaker, 2) bad connection of the breaker to the buss, 3) bad connections on the wiring, 4) failing compressor or capacitor in the A/C. You mentioned dimming of lights, that could also be a bad connection of the main breaker to the buss or bad connections. Bad connections result in voltage drop which make the amperage increase. That is what could be the problem.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

This has never happened before two weeks ago. The lights just dimmed that one time. So, do I call an electrician out ? And, what could that 'pop' be that I heard?


About 3 weeks ago, I thought I heard a 'pop' in the kitchen area (the cats did too as they both looked in that direction) but when I went to check around nothing was out of the ordinary. The lights didn't dim, the TV continued the work, the microwave clock was ok, etc.

If the pop was a short circuit, something would be not working and a breaker would be tripped. Bear in mind that abnormalitis in the electrical system are signs of problems and they only get worst and don't correct themselves. Dimming and flickering of lights are signs of bad connection in the circuit. If more than one circuit show that, then the problem is at the service panel or ahead on the utility wiring. More than that I can't tell you. A good electrician will find any problems.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The lights just dimmed once.


What do you mean by 'the problem is ...ahead on the utility wiring'?


Bad connections are not limited to the wiring in your house. They could be on the utility's wiring to the house and would result in issues like dimming and failure of large appliances, like A/C, to trip breakers from time to time. Checking the wiring with a voltage tester and clamp meter is the only way to find what the problem is and where it is.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

So, I need to call an electrician is your basic answer. Right?

Unless you have the testers and the skill level to do it yourslf, yes that would be the only option.
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