An air conditioner can be a frustrating piece of machinery since most of it’s inner workings are mostly hidden from view. If you find your ac turning off and on then it may be worth investigating the potential causes before trying to pry that big metal box open yourself. Your unit may be working fine and simply be in need of a little maintenance from an experienced professional.
This common problem is referred to by experts as short cycling. There are a large number of potential causes so it’s important to go through the list and take the time to do some trouble shooting. This article will help guide you as you try to figure out exactly what’s going on inside your A/C.
One major problem could be a misplaced or malfunctioning thermostat. As you probably already know this is the device that measures the surrounding temperature and determines when your system should turn on or shut off. Sometimes thermostats simply break or get too old. Other times they work fine but are positioned incorrectly. If a thermostat is located close to a temperature variation in the home such as a window or air vent then the constantly influx of cold air can confuse the thermostat. This makes it seem like the temperature in the home is colder than it is causing your system to automatically shut down.
Relocating or replacing a thermostat is a relatively simple process. Other problems can be more complicated and may require the assistance of an A/C repair service.
Your unit could be leaking refrigerant. This substance is used to keep the device’s internal components cool so the unit doesn’t burn out on hot days. However leaking refrigerant can freeze the coils and cause the entire system to temporarily shut down until they thaw out again. A qualified A/C repair specialist knows that this problem cannot be solved simply by refilling the refrigerant since the substance is constantly being recycled. Instead the leak must be found and closed.
Dirty Air Filter
A clogged or dirty air filter can cause much the same problem. It is a common malfunction in air conditioners as debris can build up over the many weeks and months the unit lies inactive. Clogged filters block the flow of air into the unit which can cause a number of different problems including but not limited to the freezing of coils. The result is the same, an A/C that continually shuts itself on and off.
Your AC turning off and on can be frustrating during those hot summer days. However, in milder temperatures it may not seem like a major issue. Homeowners may think it easier to ignore the problem rather than contact a repair service. This is a mistake however since short cycling can waste a considerable amount of energy and significantly increase your electricity bill. Taking the time to investigate the problem can help ensure your house stays cool and comfortable without breaking the bank.