Plumbing & Cooling Experts in Spring, TX

Why Is My AC Turning Off and On?

Now that we’re approaching the true spring season, temperatures are starting to warm up more and more. We’re still pretty much hovering around in the mid-70’s right now, but before long things will really start to heat up. When the temperature rises, you don’t want to wind up with an air conditioner that cannot meet your demand. The best way in which to prevent serious problems from developing with your air conditioner is to have them resolved as promptly as possible. Doing so means that you must recognize warning signs that something is wrong with your AC.

One situation that can definitely suggest the presence of an operational problem is short cycling. A short cycling air conditioner is one that starts up and runs only briefly, failing to complete a full cooling cycle. This is detrimental to your system and your comfort in a number of ways. If you have a short cycling air conditioner in Spring, TX, there are a number of problems that you could be facing.

What’s Behind Short Cycling?

As is the case with pretty much any air conditioning system problem, short cycling has a number of potential causes. Diagnosing the precise cause of the problem accurately is one of the reasons why you should always hire a professional to service your air conditioning system. Causes may include any of the following.

  • Dirty air filters. This is sort of a best case scenario. It’s not good for your AC, but it is easy for you yourself to resolve. If the air filter in your system is too dirty, it could be restricting airflow to the point that the system is essentially overheating. It will cycle off to cool down, start up, run briefly again, and the problem will persist. Check to see if changing the air filter resolves the problem.
  • Faulty capacitor. Most air conditioners have 2 capacitors, a start capacitor and a run capacitor. The start capacitor helps the system to get started, and the run capacitor, fittingly enough, helps it to stay up and running. If the run capacitor is not functioning properly, then the system may not stay up and running. A professional technician will have to handle the repair or replacement of the capacitor.
  • Refrigerant leak. This is probably the most serious situation that could result in short cycling. If your system is leaking refrigerant, then the leak needs to be repaired and the refrigerant recharged. Running an air conditioner with an improper refrigerant charge can have devastating effects on the system.

Problems Caused by Short Cycling

Short cycling can negatively affect you in a variety of ways. It puts a lot of unnecessary stress on your HVAC system, which can lead to excessive wear and tear and an increased risk of operational problems. It also wastes energy, as the system must start up over and over, which can result in you paying more for reduced comfort. It can also shorten the lifespan of equipment if the problem persists.

If you need any AC services, contact Milton Frank Plumbing.