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AC Problems: 3 Causes of Short Cycling

woman-with-fanWould we love you to install an AC in your home that would never give you trouble of any kind? Of course. Are we able to do so? No. And that’s why we won’t promise you that. We’re just too honest to make such claims. A bit of advice? If you find another contractor that will make such claims—find yourself another contractor! AC repairs in Salt Lake City, UT, are par for the course.

While routine maintenance will keep the majority of repairs at bay, you still need to act fast if you notice any problems with your AC. Don’t wait for a total breakdown before scheduling service. Short cycling, for instance, won’t render your system inoperable. It may not even be a sign of serious issues. It could be, though, and with summers as hot as ours, safe is always better than sorry.

First of All—What’s the Big Deal

We get it. The system is running, so why be concerned? Because your system is running for now. It’s actually not all that common for an air conditioner to just quit working out of nowhere. Even when folks tell us that’s what happened, a few questions typically reveal that there were some problems in the leadup to the Big One. Short cycling is often one of those problems.

Consider the fact that your system uses the most energy upon startup. This is true of anything, really, from cars to HVAC systems. That initial boost to get things going just needs to be sustained once the system is up and running. That means that constantly starting the system up, over and over, burns through energy. You wind up not only being less comfortable, as short cycling inhibits the dehumidifying effects of the AC and its overall performance, but paying more for that subpar performance too!

What’s Causing Short Cycling?

There are some relatively simple issues that can lead to short cycling. The best-case scenario all around is a dirty air filter. There are a lot of reasons to change your air filter regularly, and this is chief among them. If a dirty air filter suppresses airflow in the system, then the system can start to overheat. That can lead to short cycling, as the system tries to protect its condition. The reduced airflow can also lead to ice on the coils, which insulates them and forces the system to work even harder.

Another potential cause is a faulty thermostat. If it seems like your system is shutting down prematurely, even when temperatures are set properly, you may just need a new thermostat. Sometimes thermostats can be repaired, and newer smart models are certainly advanced and expensive enough to justify those repairs. However, replacing this single component really isn’t that major of an investment, if it’s your only choice.

Keep in mind you could also have a refrigerant leak, and that is very serious business. Not only does it mean short cycling and other operational issues, but forcing a system that is low on refrigerant to continue running can actually result in a burnt-out compressor. That is definitely not something you want!

Schedule your AC repairs with Design Comfort.

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