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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Renting House - AC Not Working

    Hi everyone. I was hoping for a little help. I know nothing about AC. I just rented a house and the AC is not performing well. The landlord sent someone out yesterday but he didn't do anything. He said he cleaned something on the unit. He said the temp of the air coming out of the vent was 66. The AC ran from 2 PM on Sat until 6:30 AM on Sunday nonstop. The temp stayed above 90 inside the house until after midnight, and only reached 85 by 6:30 AM, but it was 75 outside.

    This isn't normal right? Even with a poorly insulated house, shouldn't an AC unit be able to cool more than that? It ran for 14 hours and still it was 10 degrees hotter inside than out.

    When I woke up at 6:30 I moved the thermostat up until it clicked off at 85. It stayed off for about 10 mins, then clicked on again. It is now cycling on and staying on for 10 mins, then off for about 3-5 mins, then on again.

    Here are some details:

    Location: NC
    House Size: About 900 SF
    Temp: 95+ during day, 70's at night, very high humidity
    AC: I don't know the brand of the unit, but the inside compressor thing said Copeland cr16k6-pfv-220. I googled that. Is that a 1.5 ton compressor?

    I am afraid the landlord isn't going to have this properly fixed. The guy he sent over seemed very shady and unprofessional and I think he was friends with the landlord.

    Does this sound like an AC problem or a house problem such as insulation. It's an older house, probably poorly insulated, but I still think it should do better than that.

    What should I do? Keep hounding the landlord or look for a new place to live? It's absolutely miserable inside the house and I don't even feel like staying here.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    Demand he fix it or don't pay the rent. I assume you rented the house with the understanding that it had ac...if he won't hire a pro now, what's he going to do in the future?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Grundy Co. IL
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    It'e really hard to say if it can keep up from here, personally, I would call your landlord back and ask very nicely if he could have the tech come back out. He may have missed something, but if the house only held the temp. at 85* for ten minutes, you may have other issues. I had it 70* in my garage yesterday and it was about 90* here. Remember to be polite when you speak to your landlord, you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Call your landlord back and tell him its still not working right.

    Be carefull about not paying rent. Some states have stricter laws on that then others.
    You don't want that listed on your credit, and have troubles getting loans, or renting another place down the road.
    Contractor locator map


    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    check to see if you can find some numbers on the inside unit . a 1.5 ton ac unit for 900 sq ft could be to small and running all the time you will have a huge bill at the end of month

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Check your lease to make sure he doesn't have something written to exclude A/C just to be safe. Then check your A/C filters and notify him in writing along with calling him.

    "42-42. Landlord to provide fit premises.
    (a) The landlord shall:
    (1) Comply with the current applicable building and housing codes,
    whether enacted before or after October 1, 1977, to the extent required
    by the operation of such codes; no new requirement is imposed by this
    subdivision (a)(1) if a structure is exempt from a current building code.
    (2) Make all repairs and do whatever is necessary to put and keep the
    premises in a fit and habitable condition.
    (3) Keep all common areas of the premises in safe condition.
    NC General Statutes - Chapter 42 21
    (4) Maintain in good and safe working order and promptly repair all
    electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air conditioning, and other facilities and appliances supplied or required to be supplied by the landlord provided that notification of needed repairs is made to the landlord in writing by the tenant, except in emergency situations.

    (5) Provide operable smoke detectors, either battery-operated or electrical,
    having an Underwriters' Laboratories, Inc., listing or other equivalent
    national testing laboratory approval, and install the smoke detectors in
    accordance with either the standards of the National Fire Protection
    Association or the minimum protection designated in the manufacturer's
    instructions, which the landlord shall retain or provide as proof of
    compliance. The landlord shall replace or repair the smoke detectors
    within 15 days of receipt of notification if the landlord is notified of
    needed replacement or repairs in writing by the tenant. The landlord
    shall ensure that a smoke detector is operable and in good repair at the
    beginning of each tenancy. Unless the landlord and the tenant have a
    written agreement to the contrary, the landlord shall place new batteries
    in a battery-operated smoke detector at the beginning of a tenancy and
    the tenant shall replace the batteries as needed during the tenancy.
    Failure of the tenant to replace the batteries as needed shall not be
    considered as negligence on the part of the tenant or the landlord.
    (6) If the landlord is charging for the cost of providing water or sewer
    service pursuant to G.S. 42-42.1 and has actual knowledge from either
    the supplying water system or other reliable source that water being
    supplied to tenants within the landlord's property exceeds a maximum
    contaminant level established pursuant to Article 10 of Chapter 130A of
    the General Statutes, provide notice that water being supplied exceeds a
    maximum contaminant level.
    (b) The landlord is not released of his obligations under any part of this section by
    the tenant's explicit or implicit acceptance of the landlord's failure to provide premises
    complying with this section, whether done before the lease was made, when it was made,
    or after it was made, unless a governmental subdivision imposes an impediment to repair
    for a specific period of time not to exceed six months. Notwithstanding the provisions of
    this subsection, the landlord and tenant are not prohibited from making a subsequent
    written contract wherein the tenant agrees to perform specified work on the premises,
    provided that said contract is supported by adequate consideration other than the letting
    of the premises and is not made with the purpose or effect of evading the landlord's
    obligations under this Article. (1977, c. 770, s. 1; 1995, c. 111, s. 2; 1998-212, s. 17.16(i);
    2004-143, s. 3.)"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    east kansas
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    If the land lord wont fix it find out where he lives and steal the disconnect plug out of his air conditioner.

    Seriously, some communities have strict rules about rental properties. Might try the codes department.
    Beware of advice given by some guy on the Internet.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    The South
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    most AC for homes are sized for the average high temperature for the location. while others on this forum have their ideas, I think sizing for the average high for the South/Southeast is a mistake. As you know, NC and the South are in the grips of an extreme heatwave especially for this time of year with temps in the upper 90s and it is not supposed to cool down until Thurs or Friday.

    With that said, there are several possibilities. are undersized
    2.coil may need cleaning
    3.has filter been changed
    4.refrigerant may be low

    66 deg supply temp is too high. that is a sympton that indicates a problem.
    Finally a home with inside temp of 85-90 is not livable and your landlord should be notified to get a competent HVAC tech out to your home. BTW, what size is the home/apt? What size is your outside condenser? Model/ser numbers might be helpful.

    Sorry for your trouble.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Round Rock
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    I would contact your local housing authority and ask them who to contact or what to do regarding tenants rights in your area. They can assist you or point you in the right direction.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Thread Starter
    Thanks for all the replies.


    The unit says Payne Heating and Air Model PA10JA018-A and the compressor inside it says Copeland CR16K6-PFV-220

    The house is about 900 square feet. The filter has been changed. The tech said he cleaned the coil and tested the pressure and it was fine. I thought 66 degrees sounded a little high, but he said it was good.


    Thanks so much for finding that code. I had been researching housing codes and such because there are other problems that need to be addressed, like pests.


    Yes, I know in NC that I can't withhold rent. I have to notify the landlord in writing and he has a set period of time to remedy the problem.

    I really just needed to know if this sounded like a problem with the AC or if it was just really hot and normal for an AC unit to not be able to cool in this heat.

    The AC went from switching on and off to staying on at about 8:30 AM this morning. The temp has steadily climbed and it's now in the upper 80's in the house at about 1 PM and the AC is running constantly. It is about 91 outside. So the AC is only capable of keeping the house a few degrees cooler than outside, yet it runs constantly.

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