Sep 09

Should I Be Worried About AC Short Cycling?

short cycling air conditioning unitAir conditioners go through cycles during use. When turned on, the AC will work to cool the space down to the desired temperature. When it reaches this temperature, the AC will automatically turn off. Over time, the room temperature will rise. This increase in temperature will trigger the unit to start another cycle to cool down the room. The time between cycles is hardly noticeable because it tends to be prolonged.

However, if each cycle is too short or if you notice that the AC turns on and off more frequently, there may be an issue with the unit that needs your attention. When your AC is frequently cycling, this is not normal.
Short-cycling is one of the more common signs of problems with your AC. Once this happens, the best thing to do is to have your AC checked immediately. Doing so will prevent further damage and discomfort in your home.

But what exactly is short-cycling? Short-cycling involves the compressor of your AC unit. It refers to the action wherein the AC unit switches on and off multiple times in an hour. The cycle or period between switching on and off again is usually 15 minutes or less. This is considered too short for the average working cooling system.

The problem with short-cycling is that it increases the wear-and-tear in the internal components of your home AC. When all the involved components have to start and restart again and again, they wear out early and become susceptible to early damage. Frequent starts, stops, and re-starts also consume more energy. If and when short-cycling happens to you, make sure to call a licensed HVAC technician right away.

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What Causes Air Conditioner Short Cycling Glen Gardner NJ?

There are four main reasons why short-cycling happens in your air conditioner. These are:

1. Obstructed HVAC Air Filter

A dirty HVAC filter is one of the most common culprits why a home air conditioner short-cycles. This often happens in neglected units where homeowners are either too lazy or forgetful in cleaning their HVAC system.

The AC air filter collects dust and dirt when the unit is turned on. Over time, the filter accumulates build-up, causing the filter to become clogged. When this happens, the intake of air into the system becomes limited, causing your AC to work harder to cool down your home. A quick fix to this is cleaning the filter or replacing it, depending on the model or the condition. In most cases, you can perform the maintenance work yourself every few months. However, if you live in an area that is more dusty than average or if you have pets, consider cleaning your air filter each month.

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2. A Low Level Of Refrigerant

air conditioner refrigerantThe refrigerant is a chemical compound that cools down the air. To cool down a room, the AC unit takes warm air in from the interior of a home and expels the air out. It does this while pulling air in and cooling it down as it passes through the coils. If you have a refrigerant leak, the cooling capacity of the AC unit is reduced. It may no longer be able to cool down the room efficiently. The action of heat absorption and heat release become disrupted, causing the compressor to shut down too early, then turn on immediately afterward. What this means is that you might just be looking at a high-priced air conditioner repair in the future. If you suspect a low refrigerant level in your AC unit, ask a technician to check it out.

3. You Have A Damaged Thermostat

The thermostat regulates temperature. Using sensors to detect conditions, it will trigger a response from the air conditioning unit. If the temperature is too high, it will trigger the AC to cool down. If the ambient temperature is too low, the thermostat will turn off the system. When the thermostat is faulty, it will not be able to make accurate temperature readings, causing the unit to short-cycle. If the thermostat is damaged, it requires a replacement.

4. Wrong Air Conditioning Equipment Size

Short-cycling is inevitable, which means it will happen later on as the AC unit gets older. However, if the unit does not match the size of the home, it will start short-cycling right at the beginning, immediately after installation. To avoid this problem, always work with a licensed HVAC technician to ensure that you choose the right size AC unit for the specific space in your home. They will perform a Manual J calculation, which incorporates several factors, to ensure that your AC is the perfect size to meet your cooling needs.

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Call Skylands Energy Service When You Need The Professionals

Skylands Energy Service is one of the leading HVAC service providers in the area. We offer timely and high-quality HVAC services, ranging from installations and tune-ups to repairs and maintenance.

If you have any concerns about the performance and efficiency of your air conditioning unit, call us right away. One of the NATE-certified HVAC technicians on our team will perform an in-home consultation at no cost to you.

Let’s discuss your HVAC needs to find the most practical solutions for your needs. Call Skylands Energy Service now!

Some of the areas we service include Asbury, Glen Gardner, Hampton, High Bridge and these zip codes 08802, 08826, 08827, 08829 as well as all surrounding areas in Hunterdon County, New Jersey.

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