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Serving the East Bay and Tri Valley Areas Since 2001


Comfy Heating & Air Conditioning Inc. Blog

What to Do When Your Mini Split Short Cycles


Your mini split is amazing. It helps you zone control your home, but it comes with its own problems. Any HVAC system does. If your mini split short cycles it could lead to uneven cooling, or complete failure to start.

Mini split short cycling means that the unit turns on, doesn’t reach the temperature you want it to, then turns off again. It’s pretty annoying, isn’t it? Let’s talk about why this happens and what you can do when it does.

Problem: Incorrect Sizing

If your mini split is a little too mini (ha ha) and not sufficient to cool your space, it’s going to run continuously as it struggles to cool the entire room or area. We use BTUs and the square footage of your room/home as metrics to size air conditioners and mini splits for a reason.

The Fix: Split Room or Upgrade

You can upgrade your mini split, but that’s expensive. It’s not always the most viable solution especially if there are budget constraints. Consider dividing the space that your mini split is in. You can use a room divider, hang curtains from the ceiling to split a room, or a combination of the two. It’s not the best solution, but if done properly, it should help reduce short cycling.

Problem: Dirty Air Filters

Airflow is important for any HVAC system, whether it’s central or a mini split. There needs to be positive air flow into the unit to help it function in the first place.

The Fix: Clean or Replace Air Filters

Some air filters can be taken out and cleaned, such as metal mesh screens. These are part of many mini split models. Otherwise, you have to replace the entire air filter every 30 days or so to keep dust and debris from building up.

Problem: Refrigerant Leak

Your mini split uses refrigerant to cool the air. If there isn’t enough refrigerant in the closed-loop system, it means there’s a leak. When this happens, your mini split can freeze up. This is much easier to spot than if a central AC cabinet froze, but if you see it, you need to shut down your mini split.

The Fix: Call a Professional

Refrigerant leaks are health hazards. Beyond the damage that can happen to your mini split, the damage to you as a person is much greater. Professionals have the necessary tools, experience, and ability to take care of refrigerant spills and diagnose the cause of the leak.

Fixing refrigerant leaks can vary in price, but ultimately, you can’t use your mini split without repairing the refrigerant line.

It’s Frustrating, But Fixable

Mini splits can be maintained extremely well and still run into problems, but most of the time, short cycling can be fixed without having to replace the entire system. If your mini split is still young, and even if it needs a new compressor, it still has years left to go before it needs to be replaced.

Contact Comfy Heating & Air Conditioning Inc. today to schedule your mini split repair appointment as soon as possible.

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