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Air Conditioning Checking

Air Conditioner Short Cycling Troubleshooting

Updated: Feb 10, 2023

Have you ever wondered why your air conditioner kicks on and off from time to time? Your air conditioning system goes through cycles to maintain a specific temperature in your home. When your air conditioner is cycling, it is in the process of reaching the desired temperature, and once this temperature is reached, it will shut off until the cycle begins again.

If you notice that your air conditioner turns on and off in short intervals, your AC may be short cycling. There are multiple causes for this irregular pattern. It is essential to find the cause of the short cycle because there are a multitude of effects that can happen from this.

Air Conditioner Troubleshooting

What Is Air Conditioner Short Cycling?

While the average air conditioning cycle lasts around 20 minutes, sometimes your air conditioning system can go through cycles too quickly—an issue known as “short cycling.” Short cycling is a term that means the air conditioner turns on and off in short bursts and does not heat or cool your house properly. An AC system that short cycles can become less efficient, resulting in increased energy bills and excess wear-and-tear, and can result in reduced comfort for your home.

Troubleshooting the cause of short cycling should be performed quickly to prevent any further damage. If your air conditioning system is short cycling, here are four potential culprits.

4 Causes of Air Conditioner Short Cycling

1. Low Refrigerant Level: If the refrigerant is low in your air conditioner, your AC unit will not be able to properly cool your home. This inability to work properly will put stress on various components, causing them to work harder and in turn can cause your AC system to turn on and off irregularly.

2. Oversized Air Conditioner: If your air conditioner is too big for your house, it will cool the house very quickly and then shut off. This leads to higher energy bills, more maintenance calls than usual and can cause uneven cooling in the house.

3. Iced or Dirty Evaporator Coil: This is a common cause for people that have not had routine preventive AC maintenance performed on their air conditioner. The evaporator coil in your air conditioner removes hot air from your house, and when your AC unit can’t take out the hot air effectively, it has to work much harder to get the job done. This can lead to the air conditioner overheating and shutting off.

4. Dirty or Clogged Air Filter: If you don’t regularly replace the air filters in your house, the buildup can cause the air conditioner to work harder than necessary. When your air filter becomes too bogged down with dirt, dust and other microscopic particles, your air conditioner has to work harder to compensate for the lost airflow. This puts excess stress on the parts that operate the blower and compressor. These parts can overheat causing your air conditioning system to short cycle or even potentially break down resulting in costly repairs.

Is Your Air Conditioner Short Cycling? Call Energy Air To Repair It

When you have a problem with your air conditioner such as short cycling, you should contact professionals to determine the cause of the problem. At Energy Air, we can help you with anything from basic maintenance to a full HVAC system install. Whatever your need may be, let us help you. You can contact us today for more information or schedule a service online.

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Contact Energy Air

Whether you need a single air conditioning unit installed or a complete air conditioning system retrofit, our team of HVAC experts will handle it. Have questions or would like to discuss your project? Give us a call today to talk to one of our friendly team members, or schedule your appointment online.

Orlando: (407) 501-6275 | Tampa: (813) 314-7261

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