Truck AC Compressor Short Cycling – Why And What To Do?

Have you discovered that your air conditioner switches on and off by itself regularly? There is a good chance that your air conditioner is going through short cycling. To know why this happens and the next action to take, we talked to HVAC experts, and here is their reply.

Your compressor may short cycle as a result of a dirty air filter in certain circumstances. When this happens, check the low-pressure control switch and the compressor, as well as the air filter. Also, inspect the level of refrigerant in your air conditioner; check the placement of your thermostat; check the air filter; and the positioning of your thermostat.

Short cycling is a regular occurrence that can lead your AC unit to wear out long before it should be replaced. To learn more about how to deal with this, hang on and keep reading.

A car air conditioner on the dashboard, Truck AC Compressor Short Cycling - Why And What To Do?

What is Short Cycling in a Truck AC?

Short-cycling is a condition that is common in an air conditioner, although people may not always realize precisely what it is or why it is an issue.

Car dashboard air conditioner switch and vent recirculation button

This is because short cycling occurs when the air conditioner cycles on and off too quickly. Short-cycling is when the compressor of an air conditioner turns on and off many times within an hour, with each cooling cycle lasting less than fifteen minutes. This occurs throughout the course of an hour.

Why is Your Truck AC Compressor Short Cycling?

Here are common reasons your AC compressor is experiencing short cycling.

Insufficient Refrigerant 

Problems with short cycling can have a wide number of root causes. A common contributor to short-cycling in air conditioners is an insufficient amount of refrigerant in the system.

It may also contribute to a range of other problems with the air conditioning, such as the accumulation of ice. A thermostat that is not installed properly can also be tricked into turning on the air conditioner at inconvenient times, which will result in the unit's constantly short cycling.

AC System is Too Large For The Space 

Short cycling is another indicator that your air conditioning system is too large for the space it occupies. Air conditioners that are oversized can exploit their excess capacity to swiftly chill indoor spaces, but this comes at the cost of short cycling, which is necessary to maintain a particular temperature.

Problems With The Thermostat

Vehicle  thermostat

In most cases, a faulty thermostat causes an air conditioner's cooling cycle to end prematurely. If your thermostat reads temperatures incorrectly or is exposed to drafts or bright sunshine, the compressor will turn on and off at the wrong times. Repair personnel usually reset or replace the thermostat to fix the problem.

Leaks in The Refrigerant System 

An air conditioning system will experience a multitude of issues as a result of leaks in the refrigerant system.

When an air conditioner starts to short cycle, this is one of the most obvious symptoms that there has been a leak. Because a low level of refrigerant poses an immediate risk to a compressor, you will require the rapid assistance of repair specialists to resolve this issue.

Clogged Air Filter

Truck air conditioner filter

When debris clogs an air conditioner's filter, the evaporator coil can't absorb enough heat and the unit turns off early. During the summer, clean the air filter monthly. In this case, you would need to clean or repair the filter.

Check out this Puralator truck AC air filter on Amazon.

Low-pressure Control Switch

This switch disables the compressor when it detects that the amount of refrigerant present in the air conditioning system has dropped below a predetermined threshold.

This particular switch, much like any other portion of your air conditioning system, is susceptible to the wear and tear that comes with advancing years. In the event that it fails, it has the potential to cause symptoms of short-cycling, which will have an impact on the remainder of your air conditioning system.

What To Do When Your AC Compressor is Short Cycling

There is a multitude of solutions available to put an end to the short-cycling problems with your air conditioner, including the following:

Make Sure Air Filter is Clean

Make sure the air filter is clean. A blocked air filter can be the root of a broad variety of problems with an air conditioner. It is recommended that you examine the condition of your air filter and replace it if it is clogged with dust and other particles.

Thermostat Should be in Correct Position

Make sure the thermostat is in the correct position. It is in your best interest to install your home's thermostat in a centralized location on an interior wall of your property.

Check to see that your thermostat isn't installed in too close proximity to the return air register. This will prevent it from becoming confused by the influx of cool air and giving you inaccurate readings.

Check Refrigerant in AC

Man filling refrigerant

Be sure to check the amount of refrigerant in your air conditioner. It is recommended that the levels be checked by a qualified specialist who can then if required, add additional refrigerant. Your heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning professional will also look for leaks within the air conditioning system.

Check out the control switch for the low pressure. If after performing all of the above-mentioned checks you are still having problems with short-cycling, you should have a specialist in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) replace this component with a brand-new one.

Check Compressor

Make sure the compressor is working. Because a failing compressor may also display indications of short-cycling, it is a good idea to have an expert in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) examine the compressor and, if necessary, replace it.

Truck ac compressor belt and pulley

Maintain a Low Level of Cooling Output

Set up an additional air handler in your building (only for mini-split ACS). You have the option of installing an additional air handler if the outdoor mini-split unit that you have allows for it. Because of this, the air will be distributed throughout your home in a manner that is more uniform.

How Often Should a Car's AC compressor Cycle?

Air conditioning cycles when the system alternates between being on and off. This is done so that the system can maintain the appropriate level of internal pressure, which is necessary for the cooling to function correctly.

The Cycling Frequency occurs somewhere in the range of every 15 to 20 minutes. When everything is operating as it should, the air conditioners in vehicles cycle on and off approximately every 15 to 20 minutes.

This time decreases when the outside temperature is high since the system must work harder to adjust for it; nevertheless, this time decreases depending on the car model and the compressor model.

It is also important to keep in mind that the frequency of cycling may change if your vehicle is equipped with an automatic climate control system and you choose to use it. It is possible that the system will work harder or less than usual in order to maintain the temperature settings that you have selected.

Changing the temperature settings on your device and observing how the frequency of the AC cycling is affected can be a useful step in the troubleshooting process. To reiterate, the cycle of the cooling system must take place on a regular basis to maintain pressure equilibrium within the internal cooling system.

It is essential to carry out the recovery of the refrigerant used in air conditioning in a secure manner in order to prevent hazardous gases from leaking into the air that you breathe.

Can Too Much Freon Cause Short Cycling?

Automobile air conditioner freon

Many people are accustomed to hearing that an air conditioning system may require additional freon, yet many of these same individuals do not understand what freon is or what it accomplishes. In applications involving air conditioning, a non-combustible gas known as Freon is utilized in the role of a refrigerant.

In order to assist in the production of cool air that may be cycled throughout your AC system, this freon goes through an evaporation process over and over again. There are a few different applications that can be purchased that contain freon; the price of these applications can vary greatly depending on the availability of the product.

When discussing the requirement for an air conditioning system to be recharged or refilled, people are referring to the amount of freon that is contained within the system.

In certain circumstances, the evaporator coil could freeze due to more serious issues with the air conditioner (such as a faulty compressor or debris buildup). This could result in the AC being in a state of short cycling.

Should I Turn My AC Off if it is Short Cycling?

Yes, you should. If the air conditioner is functioning correctly, then this shouldn't be happening at all. Short-cycling places a great amount of pressure on the components of an air conditioner, which results in high costs and a system that will wear out quickly.

To Sum Up

The majority of short-cycling problems can be avoided by performing scheduled maintenance on a regular basis. If your difficulties with short cycling are caused by an air conditioner that is too large for your home, you may want to think about having it replaced.