Why Does My AC Unit Keep Tripping the Breaker?

Chills Air Conditioning AC repairs, Air Conditioning, Maintenance 0 Comments

We at Chills Air Conditioning know how annoying it can be when your AC unit starts tripping the circuit breaker, especially when it starts to happen over and over again. But not that many people know that this is actually a good thing. Usually, the main reason for this occurrence is that air conditioner is using more amps than the breaker is rated for, which means this seemingly annoying scenario is actually protecting your equipment and your air conditioning system from damage and possible fires.

Here are 6 main reasons why your air conditioner may be tripping the circuit breaker:

  • Your Air Filter Is Blocked

The first thing you need to check is your AC filter. When the filter is blocked, the blower will need to use more energy in order to work properly. When the blower has to work harder and for longer periods of time, it means it draws more electricity, which can lead to tripping the breaker. If this is the case, make sure to change the air filter and try to maintain it regularly from now on.

  • Faulty Circuit Breaker  

Male Electrician Repairing FuseboxSometimes, it may not be about your AC system at all. In some cases, the problem is with the circuit breaker itself. Possible scenarios:

  • loose wires that are connected to the breaker
  • the breaker itself may have broken down
  • your breaker may be undersized
  • Aged Compressor

The compressor is perhaps the crucial component of traditional AC systems. The problem with this component is that is drawing quite a lot of power when it starts. Now, if you have a compressor that is rather old and has trouble starting, it probably means it is using even more electricity when you turn it on, and the result is a tripped breaker.

The solution is to install a so-called “hard start kit” capacitor that provides your compressor with an extra push when you turn it on. If, however, your compressor turns out to be faulty and/or too old, you will need to replace it.

Reach out to our team at Chills for professional help with this one.  

  • Your Outside Unit Is Messy

If the outside unit of your cooling system is dirty and/or clogged, it isn’t able to disperse the heat coming from the inside unit, which means your outside AC unit has to stay running in an attempt to disperse the heat, which may cause the breaker to trip.

Should you realize that this is the problem with your air conditioning, it might be time for your condenser unit to be professionally cleaned.  

  • The Motor In Your AC Has Shorted

Almost all electric motors in AC units are built in such a way so they can run for long periods of time and withstand a lot of wear and tear; however, they too have a limit. If your AC motor has been running hot for too long, its wire insulation may have gone bad causing the motor to short.  

This is the scenario within which you should call the professionals to deal with your AC system.

  • Grounded Compressor

If your compressor’s electrical winding has malfunctioned, it means you have a “grounded compressor” on your hands that is probably causing a direct short to ground, resulting in a burnout. In this case, replacing the compressor is a must, as well as is cleaning the refrigerant lines.

We hope we managed to answer the titular question: Why does my AC unit keep tripping the breaker? If you still have problems with your cooling system, feel free to call our professional AC team at Chills Air Conditioning!

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