While AC tripping circuit breaker is annoying, it helps protect your appliance from damage because of several issues. An air conditioner tripping your breaker in scorching heat could be a headache.
So, if you're worried about what to do about this, you're in for a read. Look no further because we searched for the answers you need.
There are several causes why your breaker is tripping, so you need to determine what problem is occurring to fix it.
However, before doing so, you must first make sure that your AC is repeatedly tripping the breaker or if the problem is only a one-time situation by doing this:
- Turn off the AC with the thermostat.
- Switch on the circuit breaker located on the electrical panel.
- Wait for 30 minutes before turning your AC back on to cool.
If you have done these steps and your AC is still malfunctioning, you can go on and try to determine why it is happening. But, after you pinpoint the issue, what should you do about it?
Well, scroll down and see all the information we have to answer your queries.
How To Deal With Coleman RV AC Tripping Breaker
Resetting your unit helps make sure that your AC is tripping your breaker. However, only do it once, as resetting your air conditioner that keeps tripping your breaker can cause more damage than solutions.
To diagnose what causes your breaker to trip, you must observe how quickly the breaker trips after you have reset it.
The issue must be with your air conditioner if it trips a while after. On the other hand, if it immediately trips after you reset it, a wiring problem must be present.
Here is a guide on how you should fix each of the issues your AC or breaker may possess:
1. Circuit Breaker Problems
If your breaker smells like burning, is too hot to touch, or keeps tripping, it must be the problem itself. The breaker may be poorly functioning, loose, or undersized.
Because of wear and tear, poorly performing circuit breakers can happen to both old and new ones. In addition, it may also be because an acute amp surge fried it.
If you have this kind of breaker, replace it with a new one with the same ampacity as the old breaker.
On the other hand, your circuit breaker may also become loose over time, which may be why it is tripping. Fix this by nudging it from side to side to set it back in the correct position.
Meanwhile, undersized breakers paired with ACs that require higher amps to run can cause tripping. To see if this is the case, you may check the "Max Breaker Size" of your AC and compare it with your breaker.
If you have determined this is the issue, you change your breaker to the correct size for your AC unit.
2. Faulty AC Wiring
A newly wired or replaced thermostat may have wires not connected to the correct socket of your AC. This wrong wiring can cause circuit breaker tripping.
Because of faulty wiring, your AC compressor may create a surge of amps and hit your breaker. To fix this, make sure to follow this wiring guide:
- A blue or yellow wire meant for cooling should be connected to the Y terminal of your standard thermostat.
- A red wire for power should be attached to the R terminal.
- Standard AC wires should be attached to the C terminal. This wire is usually in black.
On the other hand, your wires may also have a short circuit. Short circuits happen because exposed wires touch each other. Then, this causes a spike in electrical current and trips the breaker.
To resolve this issue, you must check all the cables for damage. When you have short-circuiting wires, you must reapply their coating or opt to hire a technician to do it.
3. Accumulated Dirt In Condenser Coils and Air Filters
Because outdoor condenser coils are exposed to the environment, they easily collect dust, dirt, and other particles which trip your breaker.
Condenser coils are the ones that are responsible for exchanging heat, and any dirt accumulation can disrupt this function. Then, this disruption causes the whole outdoor unit to overheat, leading to tripping the breaker.
Meanwhile, dirty air filters restrict your AC's airflow, preventing your breaker from overheating.
The solution is to clean your outdoor condenser coils or replace your air filters.
4. Malfunctioning Compressor
A compressor is the central part of an AC that compresses refrigerant gas. If your compressor isn't starting or starting slowly, it must be causing the problem. If one of these issues occurs, your AC might overheat and blow warm air instead of cold ones.
A malfunctioning compressor spikes an amp to the breaker; if these spikes are too much for your breaker to handle, it will eventually trip.
Buying a new compressor is expensive, but you need to replace them to fix the problem. However, if your compressor only has damaged wire coatings, you only need to replace them and not the compressor itself.
If you find any exposed wires close to the casing, use plastic or nylon to fix them.
5. Leaking Refrigerant
If your window AC keeps tripping your breaker, its refrigerant may have leaks. AC units work with refrigerant cycles; this cycle needs a full Freon [a refrigerant gas] level.
If this refrigerant leaks, it overheats your AC, eventually tripping your breaker. That is why you need to find out if your refrigerant levels are low and leaking.
If so, you will need to seal the leak. However, to do this, you need a professional to help you out.
Read this post about how to add Freon to your RV's AC:
6. Issues With Fan Motor
Faulty fan motors are rarely responsible for an AC unit tripping a breaker, but it doesn't mean it can't happen. This fan produces air flow to expel heat powered by the motor.
If the engine doesn't make enough power for the fan to function, it may cause overheating, which then trips the AC breaker.
To check if this is indeed the issue, see if your outdoor fan is spinning or not. If it isn't turning, the faulty motor must be the problem. In cases like this, you need to change your fan motor.
Check out this post about the other reasons why your AC fan isn't working for more information:
How Many Times Can A Breaker Trip Without Needing Replacement?
A circuit breaker typically lasts up to 50 overloads and short circuits; however, how long it takes before it entirely breaks down will depend on the reason for its tripping.
Even after a few trips on your breaker, it may still be able to operate, but you should check what causes this tripping so you can immediately address the problem and not cause damage to your appliance or AC unit.
When To Call A Technician For A Tripping AC Breaker
If your AC unit still keeps tripping your breaker after trying to resolve the issue, or if you're unsure of what's causing this occurrence, do not hesitate to call a technician.
You do not have to attempt to fix it yourself if you find it too hard to do as it may cause further damage or even electrocute you, so it is advised to hire a professional.
How Long Do Circuit Breakers Last?
On average, circuit breakers typically last 30-40 years. For more specific details, modern circuit breakers can last for 15-20 years, while arc fault [AFCI] and ground fault [GFCI] breakers only have 10-15 years of lifespan.
Meanwhile, high-quality breakers can last even longer. If issues arise or your circuit breaker is already too old, it may be time to replace it.
Circuit breakers protect your electrical supplies from overload or short circuits, including your Coleman RV air conditioner. However, if your AC starts to trip your breaker, do not panic and try to reset it calmly.
If the problem still occurs after the resetting, then it is time for you to determine what causes it. Typically, the reason for this issue is either in your AC or the breaker itself, so you must look for the warning signs written above.
You can resolve this issue yourself and avoid hiring a contractor. You may also contact a professional to ensure that your appliance is fixed.