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Old 06-17-2012, 11:56 AM   #1
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Air Conditioner Problems


First, let me start off with a "happy Father's Day," it seems our work is never done!

I came home yesterday to find my house hot. The air conditioner wasn't working and I had no clue what was wrong. The thermostat was working, the breakers were all OK, but the compressor was not working. Also, the compressor fan was turning very slow and intermittently.

Fast forward to this morning: I turned on the AC and got great cold air. However, when I went outside, I only heard the compressor but I didn't hear the fan. I shut it off quickly and I now think I have a capacitor problem. I think that it didn't work last night because the compressor fan quit, causing the compressor to overheat. It cooled down enough this morning to start working again...I just hope no permanent damage was done.

I'll be checking the capacitor after my Father's Day breakfast this morning. Is an AC capacitor a common part? Or am I looking at a special order with a week delay in getting it? My AC is an old (early 1980's) Rheem. Any advice would be appreciate, and I should have more information after I get the unit apart.

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Old 06-17-2012, 12:01 PM   #2
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Air Conditioner Problems


You will be able to get a capacitor at any supply house. They are common. If the top of your cap is bulged then it is probably bad. Attached is a photo of a dual run capacitor. Notice the bulged top on the left photo and a normal working capaciotr at the right.
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Air Conditioner Problems-tinkerbelle-capacitor-028.jpg  


Last edited by hammerlane; 06-17-2012 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 06-17-2012, 12:04 PM   #3
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Air Conditioner Problems


The capacitor a common part, available at the parts house, or you can order them on line like Grainger etc. Really need to check it with a mulitmeter to be sure it is the cap and not the motor.
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Old 06-17-2012, 12:05 PM   #4
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Air Conditioner Problems


Capacitors are a common problem in A/C.....The compressor has a thermo switch internally to protect from overheating. You can get the capacitor on your local Grainger
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Old 06-17-2012, 03:48 PM   #5
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OK, so I have two capacitors and I'm not sure which one should be the problem. Here is a picture of the big one that I took out and then the other one that's still installed. I tested the big one, and I'm getting roughly 20 microF between common and the other two terminals. Is that too high, or about right?

Should I pull the other one out and test it?



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Old 06-17-2012, 03:54 PM   #6
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Air Conditioner Problems


Looks like the problem is the another one
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Old 06-17-2012, 04:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJboy View Post
Looks like the problem is the another one
I think you might be right. I pulled the second one and I got a very low nanoF number (it didn't even register in the micro range).

I'll try to buy a 5mF 370 VAC capacitor tomorrow. Let's hope that the new capacitor will fix it!
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Old 06-17-2012, 04:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by loftezy View Post
I think you might be right. I pulled the second one and I got a very low nanoF number (it didn't even register in the micro range).

I'll try to buy a 5mF 370 VAC capacitor tomorrow. Let's hope that the new capacitor will fix it!
5mf 370VAC or 440VAC
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Old 06-18-2012, 01:14 PM   #9
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I replaced the smaller capacitor and my AC is fixed. Thanks for your help!
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Old 06-22-2012, 12:55 AM   #10
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Air Conditioner Problems


I may be having the same problem: 1. AC started blowing air (not cold or hot) to upstairs rooms. Did a visual inspection of outside unit and I could hear a slight hum/buzz, but the fan was running. Wondering if I have electrical issues?
Hot air tonight, and tomorrow begins the weekend.
JJBoy are you in Austin area? SERVICE CALL POSSIBLE?
PM me or send to email mraygarcia at hotmail with contact info.

thanks,
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Old 06-22-2012, 03:39 AM   #11
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well

Thanks for your post.
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Old 06-22-2012, 05:12 AM   #12
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Yes, Im in Austin. Send me a msg.

Sent from my iPhone using DIY Forum

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