Problems with air conditioners, etc

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What did he say in response to question WHY (why was he suggesting what he was suggesting). That's what is important. What's his explanation.

Capacitors are cheap, really likely worth less than the value of time that you spent here discussing your question. But this intermittent situation does not seem like a capacitor problem.
Did you open up your compressor cover, disconnect, etc, did you try tracing where is electricity with your multimeter etc?
Do you have a schematic of your unit?
Get yourself a multimeter with a clamp ammeter. Try to be systematic, I do not see evidence of a systematic thought process/investigation yet.
I see some traces of same mentality "let's start replacing stuff" that we do not like about some paid "servicepersons". I think that your advantage here could be having time, persistence and a systematic approach. Try to use this advantage.
i

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Okay...one more time: The professional DID a diagnosis, then gave me a quote for a new compressor, dryer, and capacitor.
I do not wish to pretend I know what a multi-meter would be telling me. That is why I had a professional come here. He gave me what seemed like a really high quote to replace a compressor, etc....($950 mostly labor)....as I said.
Now I can just shell out lots of money for a new compressor which doesn't make much sense to me because as I speak the compressor is cooling my home...Or I can replace a $40 cap first because the prof. who did the diagnosis said it would need to be replaced if he came to do the work anyway. Good God what is so hard for "Ma sees me in my PJ's" to understand about that!
He most likely made a living giving false info to people and ripping them off becaseu all he seems capable of is redicule to anyone who trys to tread on his "holy field of expertice"

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And one more time, WHAT DID HE SAY WHEN YOU ASKED HIM WHY HE THINKS THAT STUFF NEEDS TO BE REPLACED.

That's why it should be used to find out.

Or you can systematically approach the issue, collect data and form hypotheses, which you would then test.

Quite likely, yes, it is very difficult for honest people to stay competitive in such businesses.

I think that the above is worth responding to.
i

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Ignoramus16532 wrote:

Thought I answered that...really the only other stuff he said was that the compressor was pulling 90A and did not kick on so he thought it was seized.....but then right before he left he was able to get it to kick on. Can a compressor be shot even though it occationally runs okay? I thought it would be a go or no go sort of thing.

I wouldn't know what to put where or what it would be telling me....All I know is the AC will run through about 4 or 5 cycle of on and off and then it will throw a breaker...Really that is all the HVAC prof. said...Then he checked to see if my comp was under warranty and said it would be a couple days before it came in....I since had a thrid party (prof) order the comp and have them holding off on installing it until I at least try a new cap.
As far as additional diagnosis and forming hypothesis..well I just don't know enough about it to do more than I have already done..based on what the profs have said they were going to replace.

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I also think so as far as being "seized" is concerned.

Then, perhaps, some effort needs to be invested in finding a good professional.
I mean, yeah, go ahead and replace the caps and see if it helps, if you insist. But if it does not help, perhaps hiring someone would make sense if you find someone somewhat honest.

does it seize at particular time of day? (like midday) and restart in the evening?
Maybe one of your caps is bad and if th pressure in the system exceeds something, the compressor cannot start. And then in the evening, when the refrigerant cools and pressure drops, that one cap can get the compressor going?
I mean, there has to be something to explain this intermittency.
i
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thrown..no humming as if the compressor is tryiing to start at all.

Good of you to mention....but yes I replaced the 30A with a new 30A

should be but still it runs okay when started?
I think I have a pretty good picture of what is happening ..just lack the technical knowledge to isolate the problem...II'm a mechanical designer but know little to nothing about electrical..trying to deduce this from a mechanical standpoint but am kind of backed into an electrical "corner".
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Yes, I do.
Please post the tech specs requested.
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Christopher A. Young
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We'd like to know a few things like the model number. and the tonnage.
If your neighborhood has been having brownouts.
And if you've ever had your AC professionally serviced. Unit cleaned, freon levels checked, etc.
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Christopher A. Young
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I get the feeling several on this site think I tossed a coin to see what I would start replacing: Here's some history:
A few days ago I cam home to a silent outside unit (no fan no compressor nothing). Found that the 30A breaker was thrown. Turned it back on and it flipped off after a couple seconds. Later I tried it again jsut because I was hot hand had nothing else to think about. This time it worked...the heat pump turned on and ran as if nothing were wrong.
So I replaced the breaker hoping it was just to weak. Same scenario with it. The AC will run ..on ...off on...off through several cooling cycles then one time it will throw the breaker and that's all she wrote until I go into the crawl space and turn the breaker on again.
Other relavent factors: The unit is only 3 years old, Arco Air made by Carrier. And it has been record heat here since just before this began......causing the unit to run very frequently
When the unit runs it runs great...just doesn't start every time....Curious...What leads you to suspect the thermostat...it appears to be functioning normally as does everything else...when it starts.....start....capacitor...am I really all that "shooting in the dark?"
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Actually yes you are. In a previous post you said that the tech measured 90 amps on the compressor, and you have a 30 amp breaker.... Whats wrong with this picture??? throwing parts at it because they are cheap is bullshit... thats what your accusing the folks in the trade of doing, and then when somebody comes along and says you need an expensive repair, then you blow them off and continue to screw around with paper clips and bubble gum. FWIW, $900 for a compressor change is damn cheap..... in fact half the price of what it is in the real world. A resi compressor that is drawing 90 AMPS is probably toast.... if not, it will be very shortly unless the problem is corrected.
Maybe you will figure that out once you get over your capacitor fetish..... and is doesn't matter if you put one in today, and the compressor gets replace tomorrow... it *STILL* gets a new capacitor and a filter drier so it hasn't saved you a dime....it actually cost you more money for the capacitor that you put in. Heres a news flash for you sport.... the new compressor may or may not even use the same value of capacitor as the old one.
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There is nothing wrong with a motor to draw 3x its rated amperate at startup. That should not last very long and the breaker should not trip if such startup current is brief. Most breakers are designed to handle motor loads.
As motors go, 3x running current at startup is relatively mild.
My homemade phase converter's first idler motor draws 120 amps at startup, it is rated at 10 HP.
i
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wrote:

All true.... but thats not what he said. I'm still waiting on the make/model/serial number of the unit.
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wyredog wrote:

The main problem is that alt.hvac is just a social club for pathetic, paranoid union types to get their jollies attacking anyone who asks a question. The fact that their "profession" is heavily infested with the incompetent, barely competent and outright crooks should be what they're attacking if they were truly the competent ones, but they're too stupid to realize that they are their own worst enemy.
Pete C.
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Stormin Mormon wrote:

hhp436akc1
no brownouts..had the asshole who installed show up at my house without first returning my message and say "yup breaker switch is thrown...nothing else".
Soyou can see between that and the $950 estimat I am not real eager to try a third " professional"
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<snipped drivel>
Speak for yourself, asshole....
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Pretty much turn off the power. It's my experience that I've shorted a bunch of caps, and never had one come up "hot".
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Christopher A. Young
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What should I

Why are you replacing a capacitor on your heat pump? As a preventative maintenance measure? Or is the heat pump not working so you thought you'd take a crap shoot (completely blindly) Start by replacing the thermostat, as most problems are related to bad thermostats.
To answer your other question, yes, certain capacitors can retain a charge that can easily be lethal, and/or remove parts of your body upon contact. Sometimes getting close enough will do the trick.
As far as "What should I do/not do as I remove the capacitor" goes, the key words are "do not". You do not know what you are doing. You do not know what to do. And you do not know why you are doing what you are thinking about doing.
So, the best answer based on the information you have provided is "do not".
Call a real tech, and the problem will be solved.

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He said that his problem is related to a popping 220V breaker. Is a popping breaker caused by a bad thermostat?

But would he not be able to obtain good advice? That's why he is posting here, to understand how to handle capacitors.
It does not take an Einstein to understand what a capacitor is and how to discharge one that is going to be replaced. An ape can probably be taught how to discharge capacitors.
i
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"It does not take an Einstein to understand what a capacitor is and how
to discharge one that is going to be replaced. An ape can probably be taught how to discharge capacitors"
Funny how the same types that would ridicule someone for asking a question about a device that could hold the potentail to kill...Will also ridicule anyone who is killed due to ignorance of the device. (caps)
Does inhaling to much freon make you grumpy and uncooperative...maybe someone should conduct a study.
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Do not get sidetracked, you need to have your problem solved, not argue with unfriendly people late at night. Drop the hvac newsgroup from the list, if you do not get useful responses, and keep digging deeper and post to alt.home.repair and rec.crafts.metalworking.
You need to call tomorrow and ask the company for a manual, maybe they will give you one. I am not saying that you can fix any problem, but you should hope to come across some "troubleshooting checklist" for your model that you could apply.
i
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