Every time your air conditioner turns on, it should run for several minutes before turning off again. The entire process is called a cooling cycle, and it’s key to how your HVAC system generates comfortable indoor temperatures. So if you’ve noticed your AC keeps turning off, comfort can be harder to maintain.
There are many reasons why your air conditioner keeps switching off, but one of the most common culprits is short cycling. This aggravating HVAC problem involves cooling cycles that aren’t long enough to make efficient use of your air conditioner. It may keep shutting off before your home has a chance to cool down. We’ll check out a few details of what short cycling is and where it starts. Then, we’ll provide a few more separate reasons your cooling equipment keeps shutting down.
Your Air Conditioner May Be Short Cycling
When an air conditioner short cycles, it switches off before reaching the desired temperature. It may not be long before the thermostat recognizes this and instructs the AC to start up again. But since there’s a problem, the air conditioner will continue to short cycle. This can extend the time necessary to cool your home while putting extra strain on key components. If left alone too long, short cycling could even lead to premature system failure.
5 Problems That Could Lead to Your Air Conditioner Short Cycling
Another frustrating aspect of short cycling is the number of possible causes. In general, a lot of short-cycling issues can be caused by overheating. But the excess heat could just be the symptom of another unknown problem. During air conditioner repair, a technician will look for a few of the most common things to start narrowing down the root cause.
- Overheating: High heat can ruin components inside your air conditioner. Safety features will often detect overheating and shut the AC off to protect delicate parts. But if the original problem hasn’t been addressed, this process just starts over again.
- Poor Airflow: Your HVAC system needs steady airflow to run at safe, optimal temperatures. When the air filter or ductwork is clogged, poor circulation could47] lead to overheating, which means short cycling.
- Wrong AC Sizing: HVAC equipment should be properly “sized” for your home. This means that the power of your air conditioner fits the cooling needs of your home. An air conditioning system that’s too big will pump out cool air too quickly, tricking the system into shutting off early before the entire house is cooled down.
- Dirty Condenser Coils: This component dissipates the heat collected from inside your home. When the coils get too dirty, this heat can end up in the air conditioner. The high levels of heat might be enough to trigger a premature shutdown.
- Thermostat location: The thermostat should be in a central location away from a vent or the HVAC equipment itself. This ensures every room of the house has cooling for long enough to reach the set temperature. Keeping your thermostat too close to cool air can trick it into thinking the temperature has been reached earlier.
Short cycling is a complicated problem ideal for the tools and knowledge of a professional technician. But there are still other reasons your air conditioner may be shutting off unexpectedly. Let’s take a look.
Some Other Reasons Your AC Keeps Switching Off
Electrical Malfunction: Any number of malfunctions with the wiring or an electrical switch can lead to constant shutdowns. Maybe the wiring is old or damaged, but electrical problems may need professional care for a prompt, safe solution.
Compressor Failure: This crucial component applies pressure to force heat out of the refrigerant before it’s expelled from your home. When the component fails, a safety switch will recognize the pressure change and tell the air conditioner to shut off.
Refrigerant Leak: Your refrigerant holds and releases heat, making it one of the most important substances in your HVAC system. A leak can be catastrophic, as the coils designed to hold the coolant are expensive to replace. It’s important to move quickly if you suspect a leak to avoid premature air conditioning replacement.
Clogged Condensate Line: When humidity is condensed into moisture during the cooling process, the condensate line safely drains it away. When the line or drain pan is clogged up, a float switch stops the AC before half of it is running underwater.
H2: Stop Short Cycling in Its Tracks with Air Engineers Service Experts
If your air conditioner is short cycling, call a professional technician with Air Engineers Service Experts. They can quickly uncover the root cause, working toward a solution that protects the rest of your HVAC system from the wear and tear of short cycling. To schedule an appointment or request an appointment, call 904-450-5672 today.