FYI - I just moved in to this place a few months ago. I think the A/C
unit is a 2001 model.
To ZYP - Yes, I did clean up the area around the outdoor a/c unit,
when I first moved in, because I knew that would help it run more
efficiently. That was months before the capacitor failed. It may have
been surrounded by dense vegetation for years. I wouldn't know, I
didn't live here yet.
Pried? I removed the screws on the top and sides of the unit and then
opened it up. Nothing was pried open. Perhaps the previous owner
caused whatever damage or markings you're referring to.
To Christopher - I tried to make it as clear as possible how someone
could determine if their run capacitor needed to be replaced or if
they have some other problem that required professional help. I think
the symptoms of a bad capacitor are fairly easy to observe. I had no
previous experience working on A/C units before this procedure and I
figured it out with some quick internet research.
My A/C unit has been running perfectly since I replaced that capacitor
and our power bill is as expected, so I don't see how anything else
could be wrong.
If the fan motor eventually fails or the contactor burns out, I'm
confident that I could also replace those myself. Anything beyond that
and I will call a professional to do the work.
Thanks for your comments everyone.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL