pond pump repair help


Our 3000 gal/hr submersible pond pump failed to start a couple times. Once it started after 1/2 hour or so, the other time I was there and unplugged it and it started when I pluged it in again, but it was hot to the touch. I took motor apart. Its an oil filled pump and it looks brand new inside. Oil was clean, no water in it. 13uf capacitor, listed as "motor start capacitor" in parts list, reads 13.6 uf on a capacitance meter. I'm not sure what to do next as I don't see anything wrong. I was thinking of replacing the capacitor just because I know they can fail, but that value is hard to find. 12 uf and 15 uf seem to be readialy available, would one of those work? Anybody have any suggestions as to what to do? No brushes in this motor and bearings, seals, and gaskets are in great shape. Thanks
Dan
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Dan K wrote:

Hi, By theory if you can't find exact value cap. Use next one up. Any how those caps have very wide tolerance like 13.6uF +/- 10% for an example. 15uF should do fine. Is the cap can bulging? Typical sign of failing cap.
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No bulges, the cap looks almost new (like everything else in the motor). Its not a can (oil fill type), its the dry film type - plastic case with epoxy fill.
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wrote:

I had a similar problem on a spa pump motor; wouldn't start by itself, but if I spun the shaft manually to get it going, it would run fine until powered down. Like yours, the starter cap tested ok. In my case it turned out to be the contacts on the centrifical switch that brought the starter cap in at no/low speed. After cleaning the contacts on that switch, the motor started up fine. Still running fine many years later.
-beck
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I had a brand new submersible that failed to start. It was too stiff to turn over. I separated the pump & motor, and ran the motor for a minute. Then I turned over the pump and flooded it with water and turned it by hand until it loosened up a bit (had to make an adapter). Then I recoupled the pump & motor and ran it submerged in a big cooler, it ran OK, so I put it in my spring and it has given me no trouble since.
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