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Is Your Heater Short Cycling?

dog-under-blanketWe really value our clients, and that means that we really value their comfort. In a perfect world, we’d be able to install a heater for you that would never encounter operational problems. The temperatures would drop, you’d fire up your heater, and you’d be warm and cozy for as long as the chill of winter lasted. As you probably realize, however, the world is not a perfect place. At some point, you will need heating repair in Chesterfield, MO.

When, not “if”, you do, remember that we are the professionals to call. Whatever the problem may be, you can count on our technicians to diagnose the issue accurately and promptly. Then, we can go about making the repairs necessary for getting your heating system back on track right away. One common issue that homeowners encounter is short cycling. This issue is tricky, because its causes are not always serious. But, in some cases, they’re about as serious as they get!

You  May Just Need a New Air Filter


That’s a reasonable reaction to hearing this suggestion for the first time. Short cycling is a phenomenon in which a heater starts up, but then shuts back down soon after it gets up and running. Then it starts back up again. But then it cycles right back down. So how the heck could a dirty air filter be to blame in such a scenario?

Well, the major issue with a dirty air filter is the fact that it creates a lot of excess airflow resistance. When that happens, the heater has to work harder and harder in order to force heated air throughout your home. In doing so, the heater can then overheat. It may cycle down in an effort to prevent damages resulting from the overheating of its various components.

You May Have a Failing Capacitor

If you use a heat pump to heat your home, then you have capacitors that help to keep the heat pump running as it should. These are the start and run capacitors. The start capacitor gives the system an extra boost at startup to help it get going. A run capacitor, on the other hand, helps to maintain a steady electrical current to keep the system running properly. If the system has a faulty run capacitor, then it can account for the short cycling of the system.

Replacing the run capacitor can solve the problem, and you really want to have this done even if it seems like your heater is still doing an okay job of heating your home. Remember, heat pumps are revered for their efficiency. Starting and stopping so frequently is going to decimate that efficiency, which really defeats the purpose of using this particular system.

It Could Be a Refrigerant Leak

If you use a furnace, you don’t have to worry about this one. If you use a heat pump, though, a refrigerant leak is a big deal. The system uses refrigerant to remove heat from the air outside, and to warm your  home with that heat.

If there is a leak, the system is going to have to work too hard to do that. That can result in the overheating and short cycling issue. If your heat pump has a clean filter but is short cycling, especially if there is also ice on the coil, contact us immediately.

Schedule your heating repairs with the professional technicians here at Fresh Air Heating & Cooling.

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