Summers in Texas are as hot as they come, and homes in the area need reliable air conditioners to function day in and day out. In that sense, your AC system is as important to your home as the electricity or the plumbing, and if your air conditioner is having problems, now is the time to spot them. Checking your system as it runs for any unusual signs lets you get an early jump on possible repair issues before you need your system to perform without fail.
Among the symptoms to watch for this spring is a process known as short cycling: turning on and running for a short amount of time, then turning off again, only to start the process anew a few minutes later as the heat of the day warms up the air in your home. It may not sound like anything too terrible—but short cycling can cause a huge amount of damage. Here’s a breakdown of how and why that happens.
Why Is Short Cycling a Problem?
Air conditioners use far more power turning on and turning off than they do simply running. It takes more energy to get a component like the fan motor up to speed only to shut it down again at the end of the cycle than it does to simply let it run once it’s already going. For that reason, you want your air conditioner to run for at least 15 minutes at a time before it shuts down.
That doesn’t happen in the case of short cycling. Instead, it runs a far shorter length of time before shutting down, only to turn on again and off again over and over throughout the day. As a result, your system uses far more energy than it should, driving up your monthly bills in the bargain. In addition, the added strain increases the chances of a breakdown elsewhere in the system, and if you let it continue, the wear and tear can shorten the overall lifespan of your air conditioner considerably.
What Causes Short Cycling?
Short cycling can be caused by a number of different factors, which is why you should always trust a qualified repair technician to diagnose the issue properly. In some cases, it can be caused by a malfunctioning component. Intermittent electrical power can be the source, as the system struggles with fluctuating power levels. An overheating or malfunctioning component may be the cause as well, as the air conditioner automatically turns off to prevent permanent damage, only to turn on again as the component cools off or resets.
Unfortunately, short cycling can also be caused by an overpowered air conditioner that cools the space too quickly to be effective. While other causes can usually be repaired, there’s nothing to do for an overpowered air conditioner except replace it. This is why it’s important to size an air conditioner accurately before having it installed, and why getting the most powerful unit you can afford isn’t always a good idea.
For Frisco, TX AC repair service of the highest quality, call the friendly pros at Earthwise Home Services today!