I'm told I need a new AC System but my home is still cooling


  #1  
Old 07-08-11, 07:35 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
I'm told I need a new AC System but my home is still cooling

Yesterday a very reputable firm (not some scam artist) came out to do my yearly maintenace on my AC. My system is cooling the house and I was not having any cooling problems when I called for my annual check up. I was told by the service tech that the pressure on my Bryant Central AC unit is too high, the AC is taking on too many amps, and that Puron is NOT flowing through the compressor because the pipe to the compressor was not getting cold (I felt it and it was not cold and I did not feel any condensation on the pipe). He told me I needed to replace the system. I told him I would think about it. Yet my system continues to cool my house. Could his instrument gauges have been wrong? He says that my variable ratio fan is circulating air in the house but the house is not cooling from the compressor. However, I can tell the difference between outdoor and indoor temps and the house is both being cool and dehumidified. Any thoughts from any of you out there? Thanks for your responses.
 
  #2  
Old 07-08-11, 09:19 PM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
Check your temp split in the house (room temp minus register cold air temp), if you get 16 degree at least, you are OK.
 
  #3  
Old 07-08-11, 09:39 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Thank you for your reply

Thanks for responding to me.
 
  #4  
Old 07-09-11, 12:13 AM
T
Member
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 173
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Most of what you call "reputable" companies have techs(salestechs) that get a nice commission when they sell you a new system.
The above check, temperature difference is a good start. A second opinion if you can find someone you trust is also advised before doing anything.
 
  #5  
Old 07-09-11, 05:11 AM
GregH's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 9,500
Received 68 Upvotes on 62 Posts
The information the "technician" has given you is just a list of symptoms, not a diagnosis.
If there is a problem with the compressor he has not stated what the problem is.

The symptom of the suction line ( the larger pipe) not getting cold at the outdoor unit could be a low refrigerant condition.
You can check this same line at the indoor coil and see if you feel it noticeably cooler than at the outdoor unit.

If you are handy you could take it further by looking to see if there is a cover you can remove at the indoor coil.
If you remove this coil and examine the coil itself, while the unit is running you should see condensation forming on the ends of the coil faces.
If you were to see condensation there and not on the line going to the outdoor unit it is possible the system is low on refrigerant.

The problem of too high an amperage at the compressor could be a problem with the compressor but it could also be that the outdoor coil is dirty.
Try rinsing it with a garden hose and see if any dirt runs from between the fins.

There are other possibilities but this is somewhere to start.
 
  #6  
Old 07-09-11, 08:29 AM
S
Member
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Long Island
Posts: 695
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
your the final say you know and feel it working but all these things are wrong 16-18 degree split on the air handler and 10F rise on the condenser into your face tells the world your charge is good..dirty condenser sure no big deal..on a real hot day 90F how does the Liquid line feel warm is normal,hot can't hold it the condenser is dirty insulated suction either at the air handler or condenser should be cold to cool depends on the interior loads..do the temp splits them maybe a condenser wash..is the condenser getting blasted by the sun
 
  #7  
Old 07-09-11, 09:16 AM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
He said my compressor was having valve problems. What does that mean? Even though he says my compressor is not working, my house is still cool and comfortable and it is 80+ degrees outside. Thanks to everyone for their responses.
 
  #8  
Old 07-09-11, 09:28 AM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
If everything you siad in your first post are true, then I think you have a problem even you feel good and comfortable inside the house (high amps, warm suction pipe, etc..), Sounds Your system is not running at top effieiency level. It is hard to tell when outside temp is only 80+ degree. Would like to see how the system perform when outside temp reach 95. Do the simple checks and let us know. may be we can help,
or you can call another pro and get a second opinion.
 
  #9  
Old 07-09-11, 04:59 PM
R
Member
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: nj
Posts: 526
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
valve leaking by would allow your hot gas to enter the low side giving you readings that are off and cooling that is not 100%. is your unit running non-stop on a day when the temp is in the 80's. If you notice that its running for most of the day, then you MIGHT have a compressor problem. you know your system better than any tech. you know what it feels like inside, when its 95 outside. use your best judgement and let us know.
 
  #10  
Old 07-10-11, 11:00 AM
HVAC RETIRED's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Wisconsin USA
Posts: 664
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Techs reasons are Irrational...

I was told by the service tech that the pressure on my Bryant Central AC unit is too high, the AC is taking on too many amps, and that Puron is NOT flowing through the compressor because the pipe to the compressor was not getting cold (I felt it and it was not cold and I did not feel any condensation on the pipe).
The unit could be over-charged or a dirty condenser, plus other things.

A not cold enough suction tubing does not mean the unit is no good!
 
  #11  
Old 07-11-11, 07:13 AM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Another Tech will be coming to check out AC system today

My AC system is behaving differently from how it was previously. It is still cooling the house but the system shuts down before it reaches the desired temperature on my thermostat. It will, however, kick on again later and start cooling again.

Per your suggestion, I am asking another reputable AC company here in the Chicago area to come and "service" my system to see if they concur with the first technician's findings. Will let you know what he/she says about my AC system. Thanks for taking the time out to reply to me.
 
  #12  
Old 07-11-11, 08:10 AM
Beachboy's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Northeast Kansas
Posts: 704
Upvotes: 0
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
If your system does indeed use Puron (R-410A) refrigerant, then it's a newer system and very well could still be under factory warranty. Many newer AC systems come with a 10 year warranty. You need to check this out before you agree to having your system replaced.
 
  #13  
Old 07-11-11, 09:54 AM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Service Company confirmed compressor is bad

The service company I called confirmed that my compressor is bad and that I needed a new AC system as a 4 ton compressor alone would run about $2000. Said it has mechanical problems and is locking on me. It is also very loud when it is on. Told me it shuts down automatically when it overheats and then tries to kick on again with difficulty. When the compressor tried to kick on, I hear a buzzing sound and it fails to kick in; only the fan runs. They suggested I put a SP6 hard start booster on the capacitor to ensure the compressor kicks on. Since the diagnostic service charge was $89 and was deducted from the cost of any part I purchased, I went ahead and purchased the capacitor booster ($231). Diagnostic charge was $89 so I actually paid $142 for the capacitor booster. Was I stupid to do this?
 
  #14  
Old 07-11-11, 12:45 PM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
$142 for the booster is reasonable, it helps to start the compressor, but does not fix your compressor problem. I think, sooner or later, you will need a new compressor.
 
  #15  
Old 07-11-11, 06:35 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Compressor went

Just got home from work. Fuse blew on AC. Reset fuse. AC still will not start.
 
  #16  
Old 07-11-11, 08:08 PM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
I did not expect it happens so soon. You just paid $142 for the booster, now you may have to buy a new compressor. How old is your system anyway ? If you decide to buy a new compresser for $2000, I suggest you buy the whole condenser unit, shop around, you should be able to find a condenser for $2000, may be even less depends on where you are.
 
  #17  
Old 07-11-11, 08:14 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Bryant Air Conditioner

It is a Bryant Puron AC. It is 10 years old.
 
  #18  
Old 07-12-11, 07:34 AM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
Bryant is not a bad brand, same as Carrier, should last more than 10 years. may be just bad luck or lack maintenance. Anyway, there are a lot of 410a condenser on the market. you should be able to find one easily.
 
  #19  
Old 07-12-11, 08:03 AM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Can the capacitor booster be used with a new AC?

Must be bad luck. I serviced my Bryant AC every season for 10 years. Didn't know I had a problem until the service man came this year.

Question: Since I paid $231 yesterday for the start kit booster, should it/can it be used with the new system I get?
 
  #20  
Old 07-12-11, 08:09 AM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,426
Upvotes: 0
Received 8 Upvotes on 8 Posts
No, new system won't need that, better not. only half way dead compressor needs that kind of help.
 
  #21  
Old 07-12-11, 08:40 AM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 15
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Thank You Clocert

Thanks so much for your assistance on this thread. I really appreciate the time you've spent giving me your knowledge.
 
  #22  
Old 07-14-11, 06:49 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
I worked for a AC wholesale house as well as working as an installer. At one time FPL (Florida Power & Light required a hard start on I think 4 ton and up. It certainly won't hurt to put one on.
 
  #23  
Old 07-18-11, 08:05 AM
R
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 19
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
This may help

If it was me getting a new unit installed Id have them REUSE THE HARD START KIT YOU JUST BOUGHT !!!! In fact it should be a law they come with them already installed . What that does is give the Compressor a quick start putting less stress on it and less power to kick start the compressor NEW or OLD. Have them install it !!!

And I think that your old unit may have been overcharged You are explaining the exact symptoms of a overcharged unit . But without seeing it hard to say .
 

Last edited by hvactechfw; 07-18-11 at 03:21 PM. Reason: removed solicitng for work portion, this is not allowed in the forum!
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: