• Please note, some of the links on our site are affiliate links (Learn More)

SM18M30 Friedrich window AC - ‘SHORT CYCLING’

dbs600

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
15
Location
New York
Model Number
SM18M30
Brand
-brand-
Age
6-10 years
Hello,

Hope all is well.

I have a Friedrich SM18M30 air conditioner I’ve had since new.

Have always been sure to take good care of it, including changing the filter and resetting the indicator for same, as well as keeping the unit clean and the areas surrounding it clear.

Past couple of years I’m noticing a problem that’s becoming worse and worse… which is that the unit seem to be ‘short cycling’ where it’s working fine, blowing cold air, but then the compressor shuts down, the wrench icon flashes, and the unit starts to blow warm air.

Some time passes and then the compressor kicks back on and the unit blows cold air again.

The cycling seems to be happening more frequently now, now maybe every less than 10-15 minute intervals. :(

Can you please assist and let me know what I can do myself to troubleshoot, diagnose and resolve?

I would like to try to fix myself at this time, if possible.

My best.



Thank you very much!
 

Dan O.

Appliance Tech
Staff member
Joined
Oct 9, 2004
Messages
4,356
Location
Ontario, Canada
dbs600 said:
Have always been sure to take good care of it, including changing the filter and resetting the indicator for same, as well as keeping the unit clean and the areas surrounding it clear.


Has the unit ever been opened up and had its condenser coil thoroughly cleaned? The condenser being plugged would cause the unit to work harder than normal, consume more energy and might cause the service icon to display. Such a problem would likely increase if continued to be used year after year.


image.jpeg


Dan O.
 

dbs600

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
15
Location
New York
Thank you very much, Dan.

I don't believe the condenser coil has ever been cleaned.

I'd love to attempt to clean same myself.

Any insight / links on how to do so for my unit?

Thank you again; I appreciate it! :)


Has the unit ever been opened up and had its condenser coil thoroughly cleaned? The condenser being plugged would cause the unit to work harder than normal, consume more energy and might cause the service icon to display. Such a problem would likely increase if continued to be used year after year.


View attachment 50617


Dan O.
 

dbs600

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
15
Location
New York
If you are referring to the face of the coils - just behind the washable filter - please note that they themselves do not seem dirty or bent.
 

Dan O.

Appliance Tech
Staff member
Joined
Oct 9, 2004
Messages
4,356
Location
Ontario, Canada
The condenser is the hot part at the rear. It is basically a radiator. It can become plugged over time, reducing efficiency and causing the compressor to work harder than normal and possibly to overheat. The condenser can look fine from the outside but be plugged from the inside (see image below).

dirty-condenser-coil.jpg


The a/c has to be taken apart and the condenser cleaned from both sides, not just the outside you see when looking it at. We would either use pressurized steam or a chemical aluminum cleaner, plus a wire brush to scrape it clean.

You can see how this person did one type of a/c in this video. It might give you an idea what is required on yours.



We usually recommend an A/C be thoroughly cleaned every 3 years, or every year if used in a high traffic area. If your unit is that old and never been cleaned, it is definitely needed regardless. If it still exhibits the symptoms after that, further investigation may be needed.


Dan O.
 

dbs600

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
15
Location
New York
Holy cow! All that dust w/ no mask!

Hmm; the units the men are working with are manageable; mine's not as small. :/

Thank you for all this info; going to have to figure out how to tackle this!

My best.
 

Dan O.

Appliance Tech
Staff member
Joined
Oct 9, 2004
Messages
4,356
Location
Ontario, Canada
We regularly serviced 24-30,000 BTU units. Yours looks only to be 18,000 but still likely a 2-man job. At least it's probably not snap-together like many newer window models.

Let us know how you make out.

Dan O.
 
Top