8 Reasons Your AC is Running Continuously Without Shutting Off

Know reasons why your AC is running continuously without shutting off. Trust Sandium for best advice on portable air conditioners. Get the best portable AC service now!

Updated on Oct 22, 2023
5 min read
8 Reasons Your AC is Running Continuously Without Shutting Off

There are causes for concern if your air conditioner is running all the time and not shutting off. Your unit probably has a problem. The fact that it is using a lot of electricity should get you to look up and take notice for the sake of your NorCal business, home, or agency. In addition, when an air conditioner cycles on and off continuously, it causes excessive wear and tear on the machine.

These are a few common reasons for an air conditioner to run continuously without shutting off:

1. Dirty Evaporator Coil

It is possible that the evaporator coil is covered with debris and dust because you forgot to schedule for maintenance and service. Dirty evaporator coil impedes the cooling process and makes the unit work harder for cooling a space. This can happen even when the unit was cleaned a few months ago or if the unit is located in a spot that picks up a lot of dust.

2. Frozen Evaporator Coil

Your unit could have a freezing problem if it is blowing warm air in addition to running constantly. You would need to call a professional right away to diagnose the problem and prevent any further damage to the system.

3. Air Filters are Clogged

Air flow is restricted when the air filters are full of debris or dirt. This can impede the functioning of your system. The system cannot remove humidity without enough air flowing over the coils. The system cannot cool the air to a set temperature as well, which makes it run constantly.

4. Restrictive Filters

It is possible that you are using an air filter that is too restrictive even if it is new. It is best to use an air filter with a lower MERV rating. You should not use air filters designed for removing allergens and pollen if you don’t have a problem with these.

5. Low Refrigerant Levels

An air conditioner cannot cool if it doesn’t have enough refrigerant. Your system may lose refrigerant because of a leak. The unit will keep running if this happens. It will work hard to cool your space. You would need to call an experienced HVAC contractor to find and repair the leak. They would also need to restore the refrigerant levels to the correct setting.

6. Faulty Thermostat

The unit will not know to turn off even when the temperature is reached if the thermostat is not working properly. You should get the thermostat checked to determine if the actual temperature is lower than the set point. You may need to replace the thermostat.

7. Leaky Ducts

This is a problem especially if you have older ductwork in the building. You could be losing conditioned air through the leaks in the ducts. Insulation may be gone or the joints may not be sealed. Temperature in your space will not reach the set point if enough air escapes all the time.

8. Blocked or Dirty Condenser

Condenser coils in the outside unit can get clogged as well like evaporator coils on the inside. This can impede the flow of air. Outside units can get choked with leaves, insects, bird’s nests, and other things. You should pay attention to foliage growing around the condenser unit and trim it back periodically. 

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