A/C not starting - Another Update - Thanks for the good advice !!!

To CJT, Jeff, Speedy Jim, mm, Storming Mormon
Progress !!! Still not 100% fixed but progress....
You guys are great... mentioned that the Neutral was probably open... Hmmmm.... I decided to check out the disconnect box which is separate from the inhouse power distribution panel.. Our AC disconnect boxes are wall mounted on the outside wall of the condo house. The maintenance people said "just open the one that belongs to your unit". So I did, pulled the disconnect (the old fuse panel pull out type)....and GUESS WHAT !!! I still had power to my AC unit. Tried working over the phone with maintenance people who said..."look if the disconnect didn't work, you must be getting power from someplace else and we can't help you". I said...this AC is pulling 30 amps so where is it coming from...not a wall receptacle I hope.
Anyway...it seems that several of the boxes all had incorrect condo unit numbers stenciled on them. Building maintenance finally came down (they didn't want to, talk about attitude problems) and we finally located the proper disconnect box. Two fuses in the box...one was blown open, the other was good..... So to all.... your diagnosis of an open wire (neutral) was 100% ACCURATE !!!..... Good Work !!!
Replaced the fuse....system started up... At that time BGE Home finally pulled into the parking lot (8 days late) so they checked out the system.
Compressor was running hot. Head pressure was high, 375 versus expected of 350. Suction was low about 55 instead of 65. and they found a slight leak at a connection point, although freon level was adequate.
They said head pressure was high because the coil needed to be cleaned out.
So they said, we'll clean out your coil and replace the leaky connection.... Flare nut to metering valve. It will cost you between 650 to 850 dollars. We suggest that you purchase a new system, instead of putting that money into the old one.
How does one clean out the coils ??? I'd like to try that to see if it makes a difference...before blindly going ahead and replacing the unit for $5000.00.
Your thoughts ???
Peter
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You need to have a competent tech look at it. The pressures you gave are wrong, wrong, wrong! If clogged condenser was causing high pressure then both numbers would be high. with the pressures you describe, something else is going on. They suggest, among other things, clogged condenser AND evaporator coils, clogged filter, possible overcharge of refrigerant... You really need to have a competent tech look at it because whoever showed up was not either.
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Peter wrote:

My first thought is that the neutral should not be fused. So I wonder whether you actually have a 220V transformer. But it's perhaps moot now -- you know where to look for the disconnect and fuses, which seems like important information.
My second thought is, I wonder whose AC you disconnected when you pulled the one with your Apt. # -- I hope you put that back as it was.
Cleaning the coils is probably best done with a garden hose and some gentle brushing. You don't want to damage them; they can be delicate.
$5K is a lot of money if you can avoid spending it. Even if the AC isn't optimal, the worst of the summer should soon be behind us. Cheapskate that I am, I'd try working the problem a bit before I'd commit to a new unit.
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Mental note:
Never call BGE Home service.
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On 1 Aug 2006 09:43:46 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Line up a reputable service company before you need one. BGE Home is not. They resemble the giant service companies of the 80's when customer service was anything but.
100 degree temperatures, the air conditioner still doesn't work and it's a crap shoot as to whether to spend 850. on repairs which may or may not work OR spend 5,000. for a new airconditioner. which might also be a piece of junk.
And how was YOUR day ???
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Wow, that sounds expensive for a coil cleaning. Seems like you ought to find a coil cleaning descrip on the web some whre. Essentially, you disconnect the power. take the top off the outdoor unit. Rinse the fins from the inside out, to rinse out the dirt. There are cleaning chemicals sold to AC guys, but not sure you'll find anyone to sell them to a home owner.
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Peter wrote:

important white wires doesn not mean nuetral!! if the unit sits out side and runs with the furnace or air handler its 240v.the white is a hot and should of been marked with black tape or colored in some way. try combing out the fins on the compressor outside if they are all clogged your unit cant properly transfer heat
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why not just look at the inside coil and outside coil to see if they are dirty? have you changed the air filter?
http://www.minibite.com/america/malone.htm
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