If your air conditioning is running all the time—or frequently cycles on and off—schedule a service appointment with a trusted HVAC repair contractor as soon as possible. If the source of the problem isn’t identified and corrected the result will be:
- Wasted energy and dramatically higher utility bills
- Increased wear and tear on your HVAC unit, which may decrease the lifespan of your system and/or lead to a breakdown
The good news is that the problem isn’t necessarily major or expensive to address. In fact, many of the common causes of an air conditioning unit that runs constantly (or cycles on and off) can be solved by a good, professional cleaning.
8 Common Causes of an AC Unit That Runs Constantly
- Faulty thermostat: If the thermostat isn’t working correctly, your air conditioner may continue running because the thermostat doesn’t recognize when your home has been cooled to the prescribed temperature. One way to check whether your thermostat is faulty is to use a thermometer to monitor the temperature in the vicinity of your thermostat. If the temperature is consistently at or near your chosen temperature, your thermostat could be the problem.
- Frozen evaporator coil: If your HVAC system is running constantly and blowing warm air it’s possible that your evaporator coil may have frozen. If this is the case, turn the system off and call for AC repair to prevent further damage to your system.
- Dirty evaporator coil: The performance of your AC unit can also be compromised if the evaporator coil is dirty, which makes the system work harder than necessary. Jewell Mechanical’s licensed HVAC technicians clean the evaporator coil as part of every air conditioner maintenance visit.
- Dirty condenser coils: If the condenser coils in your outdoor unit become blocked by dirt and debris like leaves, grass, sticks or branches, air flow may be compromised. This perhaps explains why customers frequently ask our technicians, “Should I cover my central air conditioner during the winter?” Again, Jewell Mechanical’s experienced HVAC technicians clean your condenser coils as part of every air conditioner maintenance appointment.
- Leaky ductwork: As we’ve noted before, ENERGY STAR® tells us that “in a typical house … about 20 to 30 percent of the air that moves through a duct system is lost due to leaks, holes, and poorly connected ducts. The result is higher utility bills and difficulty keeping [a] house comfortable, no matter how the thermostat is set.” If there are significant holes or leaks in your ductwork, your central AC system will inevitably work much harder than it should.
- Low refrigerant: If you don’t have enough refrigerant in your system, that’s yet another needless strain on your HVAC system, one that results in your unit running more often than it should. Our licensed HVAC technicians can readily address this issue, unless your central air conditioner uses R22 refrigerant (Freon), an ozone-depleting substance that will be illegal to manufacture or import into the U.S. as of January 1, 2020. If your system uses Freon, the only realistic option may be to replace your central air conditioner with a new, more efficient and environmentally friendly system.
- Incorrectly sized HVAC unit: This issue often comes to light following a home remodel or expansion project, as an HVAC unit that is too small for the space in question has to work harder than it was designed to, which can result in increased wear and tear, breakdowns, and a shorter lifespan. The licensed technicians at Jewell Mechanical can help ensure you have the correct HVAC unit size for your home.
- Dirty air filter: Last but not least, a dirty or clogged air filter can lead to performance problems. In more good news, though, changing your air filter is one of the easiest, least expensive ways to keep your air conditioning system in optimal working order.
Another is to arrange for regular, routine AC maintenance by calling Jewell Mechanical at (615) 469-5965 and taking advantage of our popular Energy Savings Agreement (ESA). Our ESA provides for two service appointments per year—one in the spring and one in the fall—as well as other benefits like discounts on HVAC repairs and priority customer status.
And if your residential central AC unit is old and needs to be replaced, Jewell Mechanical can install a new central air conditioning system, one that is likely to be much quieter, more efficient, and more durable than your current system. At Jewell Mechanical we install systems by all of the major manufacturers—including top HVAC brands like Rheem, American Standard, and Mitsubishi Electric. We also offer great offers & promotions on an ongoing basis, as well as seasonal specials on HVAC system replacements.