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pointertopica 12-01-2008 02:35 PM

How to repair/clean centrifugal start switch
2 Attachment(s)
Hey all:

I have a single-phase electric motor that powers my air compressor. The motor trips the breaker after a few seconds as it does not start. I have replaced the start capacitor to no avail. I can use a non-conductor and manually close the circuit on the centrifugal start switch and the motor will run just fine. After a while the compressor will be at its designated pressure and the motor will turn off. Once I use some air and the motor tries to switch back on to recharge the tank, it then trips again.

So the problem seems to be that the motor's centrifugal start switch contact points are not meeting and closing the circuit.

Can I repair this switch or clean it somehow? I posted on another thread and was told that obtaining parts would be very difficult, especially for a 30 year old air compressor!

Attached are some photos for reference. The contact points are in the yellow boxes.

J. V. 12-02-2008 10:40 AM

have you tried to lubricate the moving parts of the switch? Have you checked to see if the switch contacts are adjustable? If the motor starts with hand operation of the switch, it sounds like the switch springs or irons are out of adjustment or just need cleaning and lubricating. You can dress the contacts themselves with some very fine emory cloth. Just a little rubbing with emory cloth and blow it out real good.

Give me the brand and model. I may be able to help you.

pointertopica 12-02-2008 03:37 PM

The air compressor is a PUMA brand but it is 30 years old (made in 1987) and doesn't have a model number. I got this compressor 2nd hand for free as I am a college student and cannot afford to buy a new one. If you look in the photos you may be able to see the switch in the yellow box. There are two photos, one with the circuit open and another with the circuit closed. If you look at the start switch between the two photos, you will see how the parts should move to close the circuit.

EBFD6 12-02-2008 05:51 PM


Originally Posted by poindexternasty (Post 192836)
30 years old (made in 1987)

Has anyone seen my time machine?

I think I may have missed some years somewhere.:laughing:

pointertopica 12-03-2008 07:05 PM

Hey, don't hate! It cost me ZERO dollars and I've only put $5 into it in the form of a new capacitor.

Hopefully I can get her working well and really enjoy something for nothing!

Oops.... should have been TWENTY years old, not THIRTY ha!

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