Summer is right around the corner! That means sunshine, great weather… and paying to run the air conditioner.

As the temperatures rise, a lot of people’s anxiety also rises – every time they hear that air conditioner kick on. Why is it kicking on AGAIN? Wasn’t it just running?… I am not looking forward to seeing the electric bill this month. Do any of those thoughts sound familiar? You’re not alone. Luckily for you, there are oftentimes a few core reasons why air conditioners seem to constantly be running. And sometimes there are simple solutions, too.

1. You need to change your filter. When is the last time you changed your filter? Changing the filter is essential maintenance on your air conditioner. A dirty filter restricts air flow. The dirtier the filter, the harder your unit has to work to cool down the air. A dirty filter can also lead to your system overheating! Something that is so simple to take care of is one of the leading causes of equipment failure. If your system can’t get enough airflow, it will continue to cycle. This can be one of the reasons it seems like your a/c is constantly running. Set yourself a reminder to change or clean your filter regularly. Adding it to a phone calendar or purchasing multiples at once can help you remember to stay on schedule.

2. Your air conditioner coils are dirty. Over time your condenser coils will become dirty and clogged with things like dirt, dust, or lawn clippings. Your evaporator coils can become bogged down with pet hair and dust particles as well. When airflow is blocked that means that the performance of your system will go down. This leads to poor energy efficiency and the possibility of your system running constantly – trying to keep up with cooling the temperatures to your desired setting. It is recommended that a professional technician perform maintenance service on your air conditioner every cooling season. This ensures your system is clean, functioning properly, and performing at its best abilities.

3. The thermostat is not functioning properly.

There is also the possibility that your thermostat is not reading the temperature in your home correctly – causing your system to run more than it has to. You can check the accuracy of your thermostat by using another thermometer nearby to measure the temperature.

4. Your system is not sized or installed correctly. If your system or ductwork are not sized correctly for your home, it can cause your system to not work properly. A correctly sized system and ductwork is needed to sufficiently cool your home to your desired temperature.  If your system is too small, then it will work more than what should be necessary. This means your system will likely fail before it should due to extreme wear and tear. It will need to work harder to bring your house to the correct temperature, also leading to more equipment breakdowns. If the system is too large for your home, it will not be able to properly cool your home. It won’t be able to properly remove moisture from the air or complete full cycles, meaning that it will use more energy to start up and kick off. Ductwork being properly located and sized is also important. If your ducts are not properly sized and located, they will not be able to sufficiently move air throughout your home and distribute air conditioned comfort.

5. There are leaks in your ducts or poor insulation in your home. Leaks in your duct work or poor insulation also contribute to constant cycling of your air conditioner. This is because the cool air escapes and is not transported properly through the ducts. That means your system is having to work harder to cool the home due to air escaping because of those same leaks or poor insulation.

6. It’s time to replace your air conditioning unit. The average lifespan of an air conditioning unit is about 10-15 years. Just like any other piece of equipment, it will eventually not perform as well as it used to – even if properly maintained. If you have an older unit or have been experiencing a lot of repair bills – it might be time to think about replacing your existing air conditioning unit. If your air conditioner is constantly cycling and you want to know why, we’d be happy to go over the possible scenarios with you. Let us know how we can help and contact us here.