electrical question - breakers and central A/C

I don't want to be woken in the middle of the night by fire trucks blaring down the street, so...
Neighbor sez the breaker for his central AC unit regularly trips when it's running. I think only when it's warm/hot outside (he goes straight from heat to AC, so it's on even when it's 70 outside).
What could be causing this? I (think) I know that it's not good "physically" for breakers to trip and they only have a finite life, so to speak, but is it dangerous or problematic?
Thanx Renata
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wrote:

Low coolant charge, bad motor, bad breaker.... ect. Call in the pros.
Mark
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On Fri, 08 Jun 2007 09:50:33 -0400, Renata wrote:

Certainly better than the breaker *not* tripping in an overload situation. The breaker tripping is a clear sign that there is *something* wrong. It might be that the circuit was undersized to begin with, or that the compressor and/or one of the fan motors has a problem.
Sounds like your neighbor needs to have a competent HVAC tech look at his AC, and depending on what is found there, an electrician might need to look at the wiring and circuit breaker.
--
Art Greenberg
artg at eclipse dot net
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It could be a bad or improperly sized breaker, but tripping at high temperatures could also be an indication that the outside unit's coil is clogged, or for some reason there isn't sufficient air flow through it. Are there any cotton wood trees in the neighborhood? The blowing fuzz from these can quickly clog the outside coil. Is the outside fan running at the proper speed? Some of them have 2 speed fans that are supposed to switch to high speed when the system needs to work at full capacity. An over charged system can also cause this - only a trained serviceman can determine this though. You should clean the outside coil, make sure the outside fan runs properly, and maybe try changing the breaker if you feel competent to do this before hiring the serviceman.
What has this got to do with woodworking?
Charley

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It is probably an AC problem. Although, I have seen an instance where direct sun light on the breaker box would cause a trip. The breaker box was on the west side of the house and it would trip when the sunlight would hit it. Only at late afternoon would the breaker trip. Ultimately the breaker was faulty and replaced. This was in a brand new home first summer.
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Renata wrote:

a central AC that had a bad fan outside. The fan would start and run normally for a while then stop. The coils would overheat and the breaker would trip. Replacing the fan cured it, but it took a dedicated serviceman who sat and watched it until it happened to figure it out.
--
Gerald Ross
Cochran, GA
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Then he's never listened to Celine Dion... or James Blunt.
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Shelong Dong, isn't she the queen of Canada or something? ;~)
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Never overlook the obvious. Double check to make sure the breaker is screwed down tight in the breaker-box. Being loos can cause incessant tripping.
-Kevin in Indy To reply, remove (+spamproof+) from address........
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> Neighbor sez the breaker for his central AC unit regularly trips when > it's running. I think only when it's warm/hot outside (he goes > straight from heat to AC, so it's on even when it's 70 outside). > > What could be causing this? I (think) I know that it's not good > "physically" for breakers to trip and they only have a finite life, so > to speak, but is it dangerous or problematic?
What most people don't realize is that a c'bkr only has to work ONCE to meet federal design specs.
The fact that most function many times is an extra benefit.
If the above example, sounds like it is time for a service call by the A/C tech.
Lew
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As most others have said - time for a HVAC pro to take a look at the system. Same situation on my heat pump was caused by a faulty motor in the duct blower.
Tom Veatch Wichita, KS USA
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