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MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc. Blog

Is My AC Short Cycling? (Also, What’s Short Cycling?)

service-timeThere are a lot of different problems that may affect any given air conditioning system. While some problems, like those stemming from basic wear and tear, really cannot be avoided completely, there are also plenty of issues that can be avoided if you know the proper steps and precautions to take. However, it’s important to remember that many AC issues actually may result from different root problems. This is the case with short cycling—a common problem with serious implications.

Trust us when we tell you that short cycling is definitely an issue you want to nip in the bud. The good news is that it may be solved quite simply. The bad news is that it may also be a symptom of a very serious problem with your air conditioner. In today’s post, we’ll cover what short cycling is, what might cause it, and what you’ll want to rule out before scheduling professional air conditioning repair in Clifton, NJ.

How to Recognize Short Cycling

Your air conditioner is not meant to cycle on and off rapidly. No, it should not be running constantly—and if yours is, that means that you’ve got another problem on your hands!—but it should be shutting down and starting up constantly, either. If you notice that your air conditioner is cycling on and off very rapidly, then you are witnessing short cycling firsthand.

It is important to remember that, while your air conditioner is not completely broken down, it is definitely not functioning properly if it is short cycling. While it may be cooling your home, it is struggling to do so and the condition is only going to get worse. So what can cause short cycling?

  • A very dirty air filter. This is the best case scenario, and you should definitely check your filter before calling for professional repairs. If the filter is very dirty, then your system will start to overheat when cooling your home. Then, it is going to shut itself down to prevent damages.
  • A faulty run capacitor. Your air conditioner uses a run capacitor to keep the system running consistently. If this electrical component should fail, the system will start up fine but will not run reliably.
  • A refrigerant leak. This is the worst case scenario, and demonstrates how something that seems like a minor issue (such as a dirty filter) could actually be very serious. If your system is low on refrigerant, it can overheat and short cycle. If you don’t contact us to fix the issue, you can damage your system beyond repair over time.

Consequences of Short Cycling

Regardless of why your system is short cycling, there are some very undesirable consequences that you will encounter with a short cycling system. Energy costs will rise. Comfort levels will fall. And the risk of repairs shoots up astronomically due to the excessive strain on the system. Be sure to let us know if your AC is short cycling and you’re certain that you’ve got a clean filter in place!

Schedule your AC services with MarGo Plumbing Heating Cooling Inc.

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