If your AC is turning on and off frequently, it is doing something known as short cycling.  A properly working air conditioner senses when the house is warm, kicks on, and runs until the house is cooled to the set temperature.  When an AC is short cycling, it turns off prematurely before the house is completely cooled, causing it to soon after turn on again and repeat the cycle.  This constant cycling of your system can be a big drain on your energy bills and can put a strain on your air conditioner that can lead to a breakdown.  Fortunately, some of the more common causes of short cycling are easy to fix.  Let’s examine some of the causes of short cycling:

A clogged air filter:  Air filters are responsible for air quality and create a barrier that prevents dust, debris, and dirt particles from entering the condenser coil and damaging the system.  Over time filters become clogged with these materials, making it harder for air to pass through.  The system has to work much harder to pull air which puts a strain on the system causing it to overheat and shut off before it has completed the cooling process.  Solution: make sure your air filters are changed every 30-60 days.  

Low refrigerant levels:  Refrigerant (or “Freon”) is a coolant that flows through your system and is a vital part of cooling your home.  If refrigerant levels become too low, the pressure levels needed for the compressor to operate properly will also become too low.  Most compressors have a safety switch that senses pressure levels and shuts the compressor off in this event.   Once the compressor is off, the pressure levels rise back up and trigger the compressor to start again.  This rapid on/off cycle can cause serious damage or even possible failure of the system.   Solution: call Komery to schedule an appointment for a technician to look for a possible refrigerant leak and make any necessary repairs.

Thermostat Location:  Thermostats read the air around them to decide when to turn the system on and off.  A thermostat placed near a window with a lot of direct sunlight might give the thermostat the impression that the house is warmer than it is.  Additionally, a thermostat that is too close to a supply air vent might sense that is house is actually cooler than it is.  Solution: make sure the thermostat is in a centralized location in the home that gives an accurate reading of the house temperature.

An Oversized System:  If your AC is too large for your home, it will blast too much cold air too fast and shut off quickly.  This can lead to high energy bills, temperature swings, and stress on your system.  Solution: always call a trusted HVAC company when buying a new system.  Komery’s technicians are professionally trained to analyze your home’s specifications and match it to the AC system that will provide the maximum efficiency.

Lastly, preventative maintenance is the best way to make sure that minor problems are caught before they become large ones.  Make sure to schedule your AC tune up twice a year to keep your system functioning properly.

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