How do you fix a constantly tripping breaker?

Why Does My AC Breaker Keep Tripping? 9 Reasons and Solutions

You have no idea why does my ac breaker keep tripping, and this problem frustrates you. When this occurs during summer, it isn’t very pleasant. When the AC unit or any of its parts draw more current than the breaker can handle, the breaker will trip. If too much power goes into your air conditioner or goes out, the circuit breaker will trip, protecting both of you.

If your air conditioner’s circuit breaker trips now and then due to a power surge, you shouldn’t be too concerned. But you should look at it seriously if it’s happening frequently. Continuous tripping of your air conditioner’s breaker is a warning sign of a more serious issue that can damage your equipment permanently.

In this article, we will explore various reasons why does my ac breaker keep tripping and we will also give you some tips to solve this problem. In addition, we will tell you the tripped meaning and its depth explanation.

What Is an AC Breaker?

AC Breakers protect your home’s electrical systems from overloads and short circuits. It breaks the circuit and off power when it detects an overloaded or shorted wire.

Why does my AC Breaker keep tripping?

Too much current being drawn from one circuit or a short circuit caused by broken wiring or an appliance is the typical reason your ac keeps tripping breaker.

If anything is true, the breaker will trip and cut electricity to that part of your house. Dust buildup on the breaker panels is another possible reason, as is a malfunctioning compressor or motor in your air conditioner.

Why does my AC Breaker keep tripping?

What To Do When Your AC Tripping Breaker?

Does your air conditioner suddenly turn off? Having to cope with it can be a real pain. However, you shouldn’t freak out because you can do some easy things to see if the issue may be resolved.

Take a look at the filter of your AC unit. When the filter becomes clogged, it might overload the circuit and cause the breaker to trip. If necessary, clean it or replace it.

Before turning on the air conditioner, check the wiring for any indications of damage. If you notice any signs of fraying or damage to the wiring, it is crucial to contact a certified electrician without delay.

Moreover, If they don’t fix the problem, you may need to have a new electrical panel installed or have a breaker made for your AC system with more capacity installed. If you do this now, you can save money on repairs later on and return to your comfy self in no time.

9 Reasons and Effective Solutions Why does my AC Breaker Keep Tripping?

After understanding what is AC breaker is and what to do when your AC circuit breaker keeps tripping, we will now explain the following reasons that create this problem.

If you want to know how to reset AC circuit breaker then you can know it from here.

1. A Dirty Air Filter

A dirty air filter is one of the most frequent causes of an AC breaker tripping. Debris clogging an air filter can cause the system to overwork and trip the breaker.

You must regularly inspect and replace your air filters to maintain their cleanliness and correct operation.

dirty air filter cause AC breaker tripping


You can fix many issues with your air conditioner by doing this. Depending on your needs, you should change your filter every two to three months and inspect it once a month.

2. The Compressor Is Grounded

A “grounded compressor” or “compressor short to ground” occurs when an internal electrical winding has severed and made contact with the compressor’s side. This results in burnout and the oil ignition via a direct brief to the ground. In addition, the circuit breaker is inevitably tripped by the abrupt surge in current.

The Compressor Is Grounded


The worst-case scenario has occurred. A technician for air conditioning must replace the compressor and clear the refrigerant lines. If the compressor is no longer under warranty or were never covered by the warranty, it would be prudent to replace the entire outdoor unit. It is cheaper in this manner. (Compressors are quite expensive.)

3. Loose Wiring or Faulty Parts

Another reason why does my ac breaker keep tripping is loose wiring or any faulty parts. A multitude of wires are interconnected in your air conditioner’s interior and outdoor units to ensure proper operation. Losing connection or loosening wires could result in a short circuit and a tripped circuit breaker.

Wiring concerns are best left to an AC technician. A defective circuit breaker can be replaced, and malfunctioning circuits can be rewired.


If you’re not an electrician, leave this to an HVAC technician or electrician. It might be hard to determine where a short circuit is coming from.

4. The Evaporator Coil Is Frozen

If a filthy air filter or collapsed ductwork restricts airflow in your air conditioner, the evaporator coil will gradually become frigid until it freezes.

An excessive amount of moisture will accumulate on the evaporator coil, solidifying at 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius), resulting in a cascading effect.

air compressor trips breaker


In addition to replacing your air filters regularly, incorporate an inspection of your indoor unit coil into your scheduled maintenance. If your evaporator appears filthy, you should consider having a professional clear it. Due to the fragility of evaporator coils, frozen coil repair is best delegated to professionals.

5. Too Little Refrigerant

Another typical cause of an air conditioner tripping breaker is insufficient refrigerant. This can occur when there is a leak somewhere in the system, causing the refrigerant levels to fall below the minimum required for your AC unit to function properly.

When this happens, your unit will struggle to cool down and cannot manage big loads properly, forcing it to trip its breaker as a precaution.


Check the refrigerant pressure in your AC unit and refrigerant lines to see if there are any leaks. If your system has a refrigerant leak, it must be repaired and recharged with refrigerant. Most states and provinces require you to be licensed, so leave this to the professionals.

6. Dirty Condenser Coils

Maybe you determine once that breaker gets hot but not tripping; if so, you will get your solution here. If you haven’t been performing annual AC unit maintenance, you may have noticed that your home should be cooler than it is. The problem could be dirty condenser coils, which is a simple fix.

Your condenser coils lose their capacity to spread heat when they become dusty. This can cause the air conditioner to overheat, which may cause the circuit breaker to trip.

Dirty Condenser Coils cause the  circuit breaker to trip


Dirty coils are typically caused by dust and debris on the outdoor unit. To keep the condenser coils in good condition, clean them once a year and schedule regular tune-ups.

7. Problematic Compressor Start-up

A faulty compressor start-up is one of the more prevalent causes of an ac unit tripping breaker. If your compressor fails to start, it may consume too much current, causing the air compressor to trip the breaker. Faulty wiring or components, such as a capacitor or motor winding, typically cause this issue.


To have a professional diagnose the problem with your compressor, if it experiences “hard starting,” you must contact them. It may be necessary to replace the entire compressor and clean the refrigerator lines to remove any particles that could cause future complications.

8. Broken Coil Fan

Motors outside the home often drive the “coil” fans inside air conditioners. This fan blows air over the coils to dissipate the heat generated by your indoor unit.

The coil fan might burn out sooner than anticipated if the motors are defective, whether from normal wear and tear or damage sustained during nearby construction. This would lead to higher energy consumption, which is one reason why your air conditioner tripping breaker.


An HVAC tripping breaker technician with experience replacing or repairing air conditioning coils is your best bet for resolving this issue.

9. Fan Motor Fault

Our last reason why does my ac breaker keep tripping is the fan motor fault. Moving cooled air inside your home or removing heat from outside is done by the fan motors in your AC system. These motors can break down after hours of hard work.

If your fan motor isn’t effectively moving enough air, you could cause your system to overheat and trip the circuit breaker.

Fan Motor Fault why does my ac breaker keep tripping reason


Ensure the fans are spinning and the blades are still in good shape. If not, the issue is likely a broken fan or room AC blower motor. If this is true, it will need to be replaced. Again, it would help only to let a trained AC tech do this work.


To sum up, knowing “why does my AC breaker keep tripping?” is important for keeping your air conditioner in good shape. Breakers often trip for several reasons, including a dirty air filter, a grounded compressor, a breaker switch loose, or insufficient refrigerant. Regular care, like changing the filter and having a professional check it out, can stop these problems and keep your home cool and comfortable in the summer.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I stop my AC from tripping the breaker?

Check for overloads or faulty wiring in your AC system to prevent breaker tripping.

How do I stop my breaker from tripping?

Identify the specific appliance causing the overload and redistribute the electrical load.

Can a bad AC capacitor cause the breaker to trip?

Yes, a malfunctioning AC capacitor can lead to breaker tripping; consult a professional for replacement.

How do you know if your AC breaker is bad?

Look for signs like visible damage or a burnt smell; consider a professional inspection for confirmation.

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