In Las Vegas air conditioning is a necessity, and during the summer it seems like some days it runs nonstop in order to keep your internal temperature comfortable. At No Sweat Air Conditioning our phones ring all summer long with some common questions homeowners ask regarding the function and efficiency of their residential AC systems. One of these is regarding the surge that happens when air conditioning systems kick on.
Many homeowners notice that lights dim when their AC units kick on, and for some people new to the Las Vegas valley this may cause concern. The good news is that while it may bother some people it isn’t necessarily something to worry about. Your AC unit requires a decent amount of electricity to start up. For this reason, when it kicks on, it may temporarily drain electricity from other parts of your home. For instance from appliances or lightbulbs. This momentary dimming is due to the reallocation of electricity to the more immediate and direct need of your AC unit. Once that initial startup happens everything should restore and function as per usual.
Is This Okay Or Do I Need To Call My HVAC Company?
There are a few ways that you can tell if this is generally considered okay or if it is important to reach out to your HVAC company for a service call or repair. If you are worried it may be worth the call, and of course a well-trained and honest AC technician can provide you with a more comprehensive explanation of what is happening in your specific instance, but here are a few things to look for.
1 – Do your light only dim for a brief second or less? If the answer is yes, it is most likely quite normal and no cause for alarm.
2 – Do your lights only lose a miniscule amount of brightness? Again, if the answer is yes, it is most likely just fine.
Adversely, if your lights dim for long periods of time, go out completely, or lose a lot of their illuminescense it may be worthy of further investigation. In those instances it may be a sign of a larger and possibly more dangerous problem. Contacting an HVAC company in these instances may only be the first step and ultimately it may be a part of your electrical system that requires major replacement or repair in order to fully resolve the issues you are experiencing.
When To Contact No Sweat Air Conditioning
If you are worried or concerned contact us to schedule an appointment. Nothing is worth the worry, and we can in the very least offer you reassurance. Below are some of the most common reasons why people choose to book a service call with our trained technicians.
Lights Turn On/Off Rapidly At AC Startup
When accompanied with wiring that appears discolored, ashy, or even burnt, this may be the result of loose wires or damage. If left alone this could pose a serious risk to your safety and should be addressed immediately.
Lights Dim By More Than 25 Percent
The additional energy needed to power your AC unit is likely due to a failing capacitor. This is the part of your AC unit that acts like a battery to provide the extra boost of energy needed to start your AC unit. Over time, like any other mechanical part of battery, they may fail. If this is the cause of your lights dimming when your AC kicks on it is due to requiring additional voltage. Having a professional HVAC technician diagnose your problem is the only way to determine if this is in fact the cause. If it is, then you will need to replace it. You may also ask about installing a hard start kit or other available options.
Lights Go Out Completely or Trip Circuits
Tripped circuits or lights that go out completely is most likely the result of an AC unit not having a dedicated circuit or a failing circuit breaker. Overloading circuits are more common in older homes that were not designed to withstand the amperage of modern air conditioners, but can happen in any instance that connects a large number of high voltage appliances to a single circuit. This is likely the sign of a serious problem which should be addressed immediately. Overloaded circuits or circuit breaker failure can cause fires, electric shock, or other serious and permanent damage. It is recommended to unplug any appliances that share this circuit and schedule a call with a licensed and highly trained HVAC team immediately.