Carrier Air conditioner not working


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Old 04-27-09, 03:48 PM
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Question Carrier Air conditioner not working

Hi everyone,

I currently have a problem with my central air conditioning unit. We bought the house brand new 6 years ago and now the compressor died!

Here are some of the technical details:

Manufacturer: Carrier
Model Number: 38BRC042-33 (3.5 tons)
Compressor: Carlyle millennium LRA 115.0 RLA 18.6

The compressor won't turn on and therefore I will not get any cool air. I had a technician check the unit and he told me that the compressor is pulling higher amps then it is rated for (19.7 A instead of 18.6A). and that most likely it will soon fail.

He connected a hard start kit and the unit started running again without a problem nevertheless I asked him to take it off because he wanted to charge me $400 for the hard start kit which I think is outrageous.

Anyways, he recommended to replace the compressor for $2200 or the whole unit (outside and inside) for $5500-6000.

I really need your help in deciding what to do because I don't have just $6000 laying around to spend.

Is there any way to buy a hard start kit and use the air conditioner for a long period of time or will I cause more problems in the long run?

Please let me know.

Thank you all in advance for your advice...
 
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Old 04-27-09, 05:44 PM
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He must have electrical tested the capacitor across pairs at the 3 compressor terminals? You'd think he would have. When you do that test, you want the reading across any pair to be a low ohms number. And one pair's ohm reading + the other pair's ohm reading = the ohm reading from the highest pair. It is something like 1.5 + 2.5 = 4(give or take a little). Also, you do not want any reading on your meter when you test for a dead short between any of the 3 pins on the compressor and to the metal of the compressor itself(test on the copper coming out of the compressor, as that is unpainted and will give a better reading)

Did he try a regular new capacitor rated for your unit? I'd maybe try that first. $10. And if that did not work, you can buy those hard start capacitors for real cheap. I have one left over from when I bought one, but the compressor was toast, and that did not even help.

It sounds to me like every money figure you listed was like double of what I would expect, IMO of course, as I am not a licensed HVAC person. Nor am I familiar with your area. But when I saw that you were neither from The Hamptons, or Palm Beach, or the Burbank area - it all sounds high to me anyway.

Hopefully you get more opinions on this, and soon.
 
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Old 04-28-09, 07:32 AM
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The compressor isn't dead, its pulling high amps. Is the cond coil clean?

You can get a hard start "SPP-6" at any HVAC supply house, I would first replace the compressor cap then go from there.
 
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Old 04-28-09, 07:45 PM
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Thanks for all your help so far...

I went to the store and bought a new capacitor for my unit - installed it and voila the AC came back on without a problem!!!

One other question thou, does it make sense for me to install a hard start kit regardless or will it harm the unit?

Thanks.
 
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Old 04-29-09, 05:19 AM
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It won't harm the unit but you shouldn't need one after 6 years.

I would recommend a good annual maintenance
 
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Old 04-29-09, 06:04 PM
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Great job Dun!

$400 for a $20 hard start? Glad you came here. Tech should have checked capacitor and installed a ned one before the hard start.

IMO, he wantes to make money off of you. Don't call them again.

Hard start with two wires is basically a start capacitor and potential realy all in one.

As Dun said, it won't hurt, and you really don't need one right now.

Hard starts and start capacitors are used for compressors that need a little kick in the butt to get going.
 
 

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