When an air conditioner begins to short cycle each time you run it, this is a sign of a major problem. Short cycling is your air conditioner’s way of showing it’s health is compromised. Short cycling is a major problem not only for your air conditioner, but your indoor comfort. If an air conditioner short cycle’s, the home will remain hot and very uncomfortable. Absolute P&M Services will explain what short cycling is and what may be causing this problem.
AC Cycles On & Off Every 10 Minutes?
Short cycling is a term used to describe an air conditioner that switches on to cool down the home and switches off before the cooling cycle is complete. Short cycling can leave the inside of the home hotter and the air conditioner will switch back on more often, but never completes its full cooling cycle. There are a few reasons for concern when an air conditioner short cycles. One, it shows that something is wrong with the unit. Additionally, short cycle will cause your power bill to increase perhaps to even double the amount of monthly payments.
Dirty Filters Can Cause Air Conditioner Short Cycling
One of the common and less problematic causes for a short cycle is a dirty air filter. When the air filter is neglected and becomes full of dirt, it will restrict the air flow. This air flow restriction causes the air conditioner to work harder which leads to overheating. When the air conditioner overheats, it will shut off to protect itself. When you first begin to experience short cycling, check the air filter first and see if that is the problem. You do not require an HVAC technician to correct this problem. To prevent short cycles and other air conditioner problems, change out the air filters between every 1 to 3 months.
Frozen AC Evaporator Coils
Another culprit that causes short cycling is when the evaporator coils ice up. The evaporator coil can become dirty, or due to the lack of air flow, it can cause the coils to ice up. When ice develops over the evaporator coil, the heat isn’t removed in the air which causes the air conditioner to again overheat, which causes it to turn off. Evaporator coils will ice up when the air filter is dirty, the condenser or evaporator coils are dirty and need to be cleaned.
AC Refrigerant Leak
When there is a leak and the refrigerant is too low, the air conditioner cannot remove the heat from the air. The refrigerant is essential in the creation of the cool air that is circulated throughout the home. Often a sign of a refrigerant leak is short cycling as the unit will again, overheat. Another sign of a refrigerant is a hissing sound. If the air conditioner unit is short cycling, and is accompanied with a hissing sound, you most likely have a refrigerant leak.
Oversized Air Conditioner Unit
If you have installed a new air conditioner unit and have just experienced a short cycling problem, see if your new unit is too big. It is a common misconception that a bigger unit means better cooling and less monthly costs. This is nowhere near the truth. Never install an oversized unit as it causes more problems than anything else, including short cycling. In the end, it will cost you more money.