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Why Won’t My AC Shut Off?

blown-awayWhen the weather gets extremely hot, an air conditioner that works all the time sounds great. Well, it sounds great. The truth is that when you have an AC that continues to run long after it’s supposed to have cycled off, you’ll end up with…

  • A house that’s far too cold for comfort
  • Electrical bills that will make your jaw drop
  • An AC that breaks down years too early

When an air conditioner goes nonstop, something is wrong with it. It might be simple, but you may also need to call us for air conditioning repair in Burlington, VT. We’ll look below at some reasons for an AC that just won’t quit.

Thermostat trouble

This is the best place to start: the control panel that tells the AC when to turn on and off. The thermostat may become miscalibrated and start reading temperatures in your home as hotter than they actually are. This means the thermostat will keep the AC running for longer than necessary. Another potential thermostat error is a loss of connection—the thermostat has a specific wired connection to signal the AC to shut down. If it loses this connection, the AC won’t turn off. You must have professionals fix a thermostat problem.

Dirty air filter

A clogged air filter restricts how much air an AC can cool because it can’t draw sufficient quantities through the filter. This can lead to the air conditioner running for longer than normal as it struggles to keep up with the heat. Check on the filter to see if it’s dirty and replace it if it is. This may stop the problem.

Dirty condenser coil

The outdoor condenser coil is where the air conditioner releases the heat it has drawn from the indoor air. If the coil is covered with grime—something that can easily occur over a summer—then it won’t be able to expel heat as effectively. With more heat trapped inside the AC, it will work harder and run longer. Eventually, the AC will overheat because of this extra workload and trip the circuit breaker.

A stuck relay

This is a common electrical problem. If the relay to the blower motor or the compressor becomes stuck, it won’t close the circuit and power will continue to flow to the motors and keep them running. You’ll need professionals to fix this—don’t try to tamper with the electrical components of the AC on your own.

Loss of refrigerant

A nonstop air conditioner can be a sign it’s lost refrigerant to leaks. These leaks will lead to the air conditioner lacking sufficient refrigerant to lower the temperature of the air, and the AC will run for longer and longer. You may also notice the indoor evaporator coil has frozen, a sign of low refrigerant levels that aren’t absorbing enough heat to warm the coil. Call technicians to locate the leaks, seal them, and restore the lost refrigerant amount.

Undersized AC

If this is a new air conditioner, then you may have a system too small for your house. This often happens when amateurs are allowed to install the air conditioning system. The only solution to the problem is to replace the AC with an accurately sized unit.

Red Rock Mechanical, LLC serves Northwest Vermont and Northeast New York. Reach out to us for all your air conditioning needs.

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