(2): A/C ~10Kbtu/hr -- tries 10 or 20 times before compressor turns on.

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A/C keeps trying (you can hear it), MANY times, eg 10, sometimes maybe even 20, before you hear the compressor finally turn on.
MAYBE it's simply because it's so hot here (10mi north of NYC) that everyone's running their own AC's, that the voltage is down?
(Once I checked with one or several VOM's -- seemed ok to me. But I'll try again after posting this, just to get a general discussion going.)
How low should the voltage get to cause such a try-try-try problem?
Also, in the last "n" years, have the AC manufaacturers tried to build around the "everyone's running their AC's and voltage is a bit (a tad) low"?
If so, about when did that change take place?
THANKS!
David
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On 7/25/2010 3:51 PM, David Combs wrote:

You can install what is commonly called a "kick start" unit in the condenser control box. Most AC condensers don't have a start assist device from the factory although it's an option. It could be that your AC is trying to restart before the system pressures have time to equalize. An anti short cycle timer can solve that problem and also keep someone from playing around with the thermostat and slamming the compressor on and off. The time delay is usually set for 3-5 minutes.
TDD
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Typically 10% or so voltage drop is too much. Try a different socket, might have to go and buy a good electric socket. May also help to wire brush the terminals on the plug. If you're electrically minded, you can also check the herm side of the dual capacitor, and see if it's got enough farads.
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Stormin Mormon wrote:

Enough *micro* farads.
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Well, same question? What's "enough" -- and how do you tell that there is or isn't enough (or too much) capacitance?
David
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David Combs wrote:

I test them with a Sencore capacitance/inductance meter. I have an older model like in this link.
http://www.valuetronics.com/Details.aspx?ProdID 07
That was probably over or close to $1000 new, I bought it used long ago. Still works great.
The cheap hand held ones are next to useless.
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On Jul 29, 12:15am, snipped-for-privacy@panix.com (David Combs) wrote:

You're not going to have the equipment to test a capacitor. Did you find the schematic inside it somewhere? If it just has a run capacitor you can try replacing it. They are fairly cheap. A local ac supply place will have one, take the old one with you.
I think you've got other issues though. How old is this unit?
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On Thu, 29 Jul 2010 05:01:41 -0700, jamesgangnc wrote:

Check the head pressure first. If it's under 100 PSI when it tries to start re-cap the condensing unit. Start/run compressor and fan (if it has one).
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I'm pretty sure he does not have a set of gauges.
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Old. Maybe 15 years old, maybe more.
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15 isn't htat bad, if it gets cleaned every few years. Did it ever get fixed?
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but what is the "herm" side?
And I didn't even know that AC's *had* capacitors!

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but what is the "herm" side?
CY: Herm is short for "hermetic compressor".
And I didn't even know that AC's *had* capacitors!
CY: high tech, you know....

CY: Should say on the side of the capacitor. Somtimes they get weak. Open, or shorted.
Thanks!
CY: Please remit $48.50 for professional advice.
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David Combs wrote:

My one window unit had a unique start up, and I always guessed it was for low voltage reasons. The fan would start about a second or so before the compressor. I always thought it should have been the other way around with the compressor starting first.
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On 7/25/2010 3:51 PM, David Combs wrote:

Oh crap, I just realized you are talking about a window unit! You can still install a kick-start, start assist device in the window unit. They are available for window units too. Another thing that's very important for a window AC is the quality of the electrical connections, the shape the plug and receptacle are in. Look closely at the plug and make sure it's not toasted. The receptacle can be a bit weak too from overheating which will result in a voltage drop when it's under load.
TDD
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On Jul 26, 12:03am, The Daring Dufas <the-daring-

How can you tell he's talking about a window unit?
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On 7/26/2010 7:03 AM, jamesgangnc wrote:

10 thousand BTU AC unit. It's in the subject line.
TDD
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wrote:

Got ya. Obvious now that you point it out. I agree, the cord/plug/ receptacle is the first place to look. People are always plugging those big window shakers into a wall outlet that is backstabbed and often near the end of a long 14 gauge run. Gets hot day one and goes downhill from there.
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...
Years ago, I had an extra circuit put in for just that socket.
Yes, I'd better scrape off the male plug -- how to do the female part, I don't know -- and if one is cruddy, the other probably is too?
David
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Go to the store and buy a good 15 amp socket (figure about $2.50) and replace the socket.
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