If you have found that your air conditioner's refrigerant is low, and you have to keep having it recharged, you may wonder if there could be a leak somewhere in one of the lines. If so, look for the following signs that your central air conditioning unit is leaking refrigerant.

Intermittent Warm Air from Your Home's Vents

One of the first signs that probably alerted you to a problem with your air conditioner is that your home is no longer as cool as you would like it to be. While this could be a sign of any number of issues with your central AC unit, there is one way to determine whether or not it is a problem with your refrigerant.

Periodically, place your hand over your home's vents to test the temperature of the air. If you find that it blows cold one time then blows out warm air another, this rapid change in temperature is probably due to a low refrigerant level.

When the level gets low, it does not evenly flow through the coolant lines, so the air coming from the unit is not always cooled. And, when the refrigerant does enter the lines, it becomes concentrated and makes the air colder than it should be. Since the AC unit's coolant lines run through a closed system, refrigerant should not simply evaporate. Instead, it is most likely leaking out somewhere. 

Hissing Noises Coming from Your AC Unit

Another sign that you have a refrigerant leak in your air conditioning unit is the presence of a hissing sound whenever the condenser is running. If the hole from which the refrigerant is leaking is small, the pressure from within the system will push the liquid coolant through the holes.

As a result, the refrigerant will create the hissing noise. In the beginning, you may only be able to detect this sound by placing your ear directly on the exterior of the AC unit. However, if the hole grows larger or more holes are created, you may be able to hear the hissing simply by walking close to the unit.

If your AC unit's refrigerant keeps running low, and you notice the signs above, you most likely have a leak somewhere in the system. Contact an air conditioning repair service like GNL Heating and Cooling so they can inspect your AC unit and take the necessary action to fix it and get your home comfortably cool once again.