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keanu3000 10-03-2012 11:59 AM

compressor not kicking on
i had a condenser replaced months ago, but had probs with the compressor not coming on. freon was good, so were the fuses. one tech got it to kick on by pouring cold water on it, however it's not ideal to have to do this every time it cuts off. any ideas to point me in the right direction? thanks in advance.

JJboy 10-03-2012 12:04 PM

try to install 5-2-1 start kit. if your compressor is getting too hot to open the thermo switch there is another problem.

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keanu3000 10-03-2012 01:40 PM

my handyguy says he's going to replace the capacitor and instant start for 95 + 95 labor.. hopefully this does the trick

Doc Holliday 10-03-2012 02:05 PM

No, it's overheating. If anyone is having to let water run over the compressor for it to start than that means it's overheating as JJBoy has said, it's protecting itself due to the thermal overload protection switch opening the start winding up. It is supposed to do that in the event of overheating.

Now if you leave it off all night and it cranks up first thing when it's completely cold, then runs until either your thermostat is satisfied or it cuts off prematurely and then doesn't start back up again until it's cooled off by either time or water than something else is wrong.

The hard start will not start an overheated compressor as the thermal overload will still be open until the compressor cools off.

I'd recover all refrigerant, nitrogen flush the lineset and make dang skippy this time there is a vacuum pulled on the refrigerant line set for at least 45 minutes and then weigh in the correct refrigerant charge with new refirgerant. I say this because I believe there to be air in the lines which means not enough oil in the compressor which means overheating, just like a car motor would do. That or an electrical issue or possibly a combination of both.

Again, the hard start is not to compensate for an overheating compressor. Not to mention it simply won't work.

Doc Holliday 10-03-2012 02:20 PM

I don't believe that the install was good to begin with, doesn't sound like they pulled a vacuum on the lineset.

You absolutely have to pull a vacuum to get the proper amount of refrigerant/oil into the system. Air and moisture which is removed during a vacuum is the killer of compressors, forms a detrimental acid which eats the compressor windings.

If that has already begun to destroy the start windings I'd demand a new compressor and new installers who can provide you with a professional install. That includes a nitrogen flush, triple evacuation down to 500 microns and new refrigerant weighed in to start with, superheat or subcool charged after it's stabilized.

Simple as that, one foot in front of the other.

keanu3000 10-03-2012 02:36 PM

how much does something like that cost? i had a friend of a friend install it and i don't want them to touch it again.

Doc Holliday 10-03-2012 04:00 PM

Depends. In your current position I'm not sure an actual hvac contractor (company) will touch it. You may need to find a tech and ask him if he'll do it on the side.

Is this a brand new unit or used? R-22 or 410-A? R-22 you're looking at at least $50 per pound, more like $60+. Some contractors are even charging $100 per pound. What size system? On the data sticker there should be the factory recommended charge in ounces. Let us know.

If someone in your position came up to me and asked, I could get away for about $500.00 including new refrigerant up to around 5 pounds, two hours max. But that's just me. You may find it cheaper or you may find it twice as much, but you have to make sure whomever is doing this knows what they're doing and have the PROPER tools and knowledge of the tools and an hvac system to do the job right so no, not your friend.

Marty S. 10-03-2012 04:40 PM

Plugged up metering device in the indoor coil or a plugged up filter drier will make a compressor over heat, as will weak capacitor. Your guy should be able to check the all of those things with basic tools that every heating and air guy has. Checking the refrigerant pressures alone is not good enough,needs superheat and subcool to "see" what's going on in the refrigerant circuit.

beenthere 10-03-2012 05:03 PM

pot brand and model number of condenser. Also, do you know if your indoor coil has a fixed metering device or a TXV. Some new condensers still come through with recip compressors. And they often can't restart without a hard start kit.

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