Air Conditioner- fix or place?

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On Friday, April 17, 2015 at 10:19:16 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

ell Texas not being able to keep my home at the 72F set on the thermostat. I had about 4 technicians tell me that the unit was working fine, but when the temperature kept creeping up approaching 80F, I called the manager of t he AC company. He came out and just looked at everything, no tools involve d. He told me that an AC unit, like a performance car engine, works better if you can improve the way it breathes. He advised me to add an additiona l air return duct and filter. I did this myself and all my problems were c ured. A cheap and easy fix!

He said it was a brand new house in Texas. And even if the guy installing it was incompetent, the fact that a manager figured out that the solution is an additional return would, in most cases, mean that they are responsible for doing the modification.

And here in NJ which needs both, there are still plenty of screwed up ineffective systems, usually on the cooling side. Which is sad, because by now, with all the computer tools and knowledge base, it should be easy to do it right. Unfortunately, doing it cheap seems to be one factor. And I think because so many techs are focused on that world, they don't even learn how to do it right.
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On Wed, 15 Apr 2015 19:24:42 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

What do you mean "no answer"? How do they have nerve enough not to answer?
Unless someone can explain to me how this is okay, it sounds like a con game to me. That is, who knows if they checked out anything. Who knows if you really need 8 pounds? maybe you need 2 pounds. I certainly wouldn't let this company touch your AC again, and if they won't answer about the other 19 points, I'd report them to Angie. After all, what good is that list, which you have paid to use, I gather, if people don't report their bad experiences.
I'd demand an answer to each of the 20 points, but at the this point, I would expect anything to be true.

My Carrier AC worked fine until about 4 years ago, when the compressor started tripping the breaker on startup. It's not the cap. I rarely used it, preferring open windows unless it's over 90 or 95 out, but it worked fine for 32 years.
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On 4/18/2015 6:26 AM, micky wrote:

Most likely, the insullation on the motor windings is breaking down. 32 years is long past time to replace.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Sat, 18 Apr 2015 07:38:53 -0400, Stormin Mormon

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On Saturday, April 18, 2015 at 8:37:23 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Around here we call those hard start kits.
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On 4/18/2015 12:14 PM, trader_4 wrote:

Soft start is needed for some motors. But, not ACR systems.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Sat, 18 Apr 2015 20:58:49 -0400, Stormin Mormon

Generally installed when the compressor is on too long cable.
Emerson makes one that is highly recommended. SureStart is used on a lot of systems for generator and off-grid operation as well.
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On 4/18/2015 10:40 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

I've been doing AC work since before 1995,and got my EPA "freon certificate" in 1995. In that time, I've never heard of a "soft start kit" for AC or refrigeration systems. If such a thing exists, I've never heard of it. So, if they are listed and sold every where, why have I never seen or heard of one?
Here is a chance to help me out. Send a URL to a couple of these, and give me examples of a couple of parts houses that carry them. I am willing to learn some thing new.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Sunday, April 19, 2015 at 6:42:03 AM UTC-4, Stormin Mormon wrote:

I hope you're just trying to be cute here over Clare using the term "soft start kit" instead of the more common "hard start" term. If you google, you will see that some people and manufacturers refer to them as "soft start" too. And if that is in fact your point, wouldn't it be better for the benefit of the group here to just say that, instead of creating more confusion?
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On 4/19/2015 8:52 AM, trader_4 wrote:

I'm being very literal. I've heard of soft start kits for motors, if the rapid start is too rough on bearings, pulleys, belts, etc. But never heard of such for AC/R. Also never seen an ad for soft start kit.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Sunday, April 19, 2015 at 10:09:34 AM UTC-4, Stormin Mormon wrote:

Here's one:
http://www.emersonclimate.com/europe/en-eu/Products/Electronics/Alco_Electronic_Controls/Pages/Compressor_Soft_Starter.aspx
I guess I'm confused now too. I agree that the common term that I've always used is a "hard start kit". And it was added to a compressor that was having trouble starting, tripping the breaker on start-up, etc. They appear to be the far more common type. I had one put on my old AC, got another 15 years out of it.
But then Emerson and some others have these "soft start kits". From a brief look, it seems the soft start kits may be targeted to reducing the initial current, by starting it more gently and that they learn, are more expensive. So, maybe they are good for folks that need to run an AC off a generator? On the other hand, the common hard start kit is there just to get the compressor that's having difficulty starting going, thereby preventing the breaker from tripping. That's what it looks like to me at least.
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On Sun, 19 Apr 2015 10:09:30 -0400, Stormin Mormon

conceptually, between hard and soft start, and soft start IS used on HVAC. Not terribly widely used - but enough to be called a "common" application. And yes,Stormy WILL try to rattle my chain - pretty much regardless what I say. Sometimes I return the favour.
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On Sunday, April 19, 2015 at 3:40:41 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Let's recap. Stated problem:
My Carrier AC worked fine until about 4 years ago, when the compressor

Stormin:

Clare:
"I'd be trying a "soft start kit" first."
Really? A soft start kit? I'm with Stormin and Gfre on this one. If an AC unit starts having trouble starting, tripping the breaker, a hard start kit is what you typically put on it.
https://www.acwholesalers.com/Goodman-Air-Conditioner/CSR-U-2-Hard-Start-Kit-for-3-up-to-4-Ton-Units/14590.ac?gclid=CObUkNafg8UCFUokgQodsQMAEQ
Exactly what my AC was doing. Put a hard start kit on it and got another 15 years of use out of it. But then Clare says he doesn't read my posts so I guess he'll continue to live in his own little world.
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On 4/19/2015 4:55 PM, trader_4 wrote:

From my vantage point, Clare has tended to sound a bit over assured. Once in a while I question his confidence.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Sun, 19 Apr 2015 05:52:35 -0700 (PDT), trader_4

Soft start is usually associated with 3 phase motors. They bump them over with a reduced voltage before hitting them with the full voltage. It was a common thing in the old disk drives when they were the size of a refrigerator. The AC thing is generally called a hard start. It is just a capacitor that goes across the run capacitor and drops out after the motor is up to speed. You get a bigger kick at start up and the time it takes to drop out the start capacitor is shorter. They are thrown at old compressors that can be cranky to start but I suspect some may just have bad capacitors to start with. Mormon is right, a lot of old compressors do have insulation break down as they age. This causes increased current draw and why old refrigerators will trip GFCIs. It is actually shorting to ground.
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On Sun, 19 Apr 2015 10:40:30 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

years old already, and can be a solution for starting compressors and pumps and fans where the power supply is not "stiff" enough to handle full power across-the-line starting. It is also used to reduce starting shock. It replaces thermal/ magnetic reduced voltage starters.
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On Sun, 19 Apr 2015 06:42:01 -0400, Stormin Mormon

www.hypereng,com http://www.gen-pro.biz /#!faq/c1slq http://hvac-talk.com/vbb/showthread.php?1127991-Soft-Starts http://www.hvacwebconnection.com/Products/airconditioner_softstart.htm
Schneider AltiStart 01 is a comonly stocked soft start unit also recommended for HVAC compressors.(and large air handlers) http://www.schneider-electric.com/products/us/en/50000-ac-drives-and-soft-starts/50070-ac-soft-starts/779-altistart-01/
Danfoss is another supplier: http://products.danfoss.com/productdetail/industrialautomation/electronic-soft-starters/tci-ci-tronic-torque-limiters/037n0046/
Numerous HVAC contractors in our area are using one or the other, particularly for off-grid or rural applications whre getting a heavier (stiffer) service is not feasible. These things restrict startup surge to 2 or 3 times running current, instead of up to 10 times.
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On Sunday, April 19, 2015 at 3:37:55 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Anyone here ever see one of those on a residential AC unit? Not me..... And who said needing a heavier service was the problem? The stated problem was an AC unit that previously worked OK, but then was having trouble starting, tripping the breaker. Sounds like a classic hard start kit application to me..... And the hard start kit is $40, not $150 for the soft start gizmo. The fact that the "torque limiter" has DIN mounting alone should tell you something......
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On 4/19/2015 3:37 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

I'd never seen any thing like this, where I am (western NY). Thank you. Never know, I may need some thing like this, one day.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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I worked in industry and not home usage. At work we had several large motors using the 'soft start' devices. I sort of thought of them as a one shot inverter. That is they are designed to slowly start up a motor so less inrush current is used as they ramp up to speed. After they reached full speed then a motor contactor would pull in and connect the motor directly to the main lines.
That is differant than the hard start crcuits where a motor is hard to start.
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