Need Help with Air Handler Fan Issues.


Old 05-25-14, 08:53 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 11
Need Help with Air Handler Fan Issues.

So, about a year ago I got my air handler fan motor looked at by a "reputed" professional. He said nothing was wrong, charged me $80 for coming out and went his way. I had noticed that he left my thermo set at "Fan On" not auto. Whenever I would change it back to auto the fan would shut off.

After the fan would shut off I would have to reset the system and have "Fan On" selected with my thermo and have to climb up into my attic to kick-start the air handler blower fan by starting the spin myself.

I moved out and let a family member live there for a while, come back to get a bunch of stuff to move for a job while trying to sell the house. Was informed by the Realtor that the downstairs air was not working.

So I go up into the attic, try to get it to work by jump starting it again. It ran for about 30 minutes then there was a loud squeak and the fan locked up. After turning it off the squirrel cage (w/e you preference to call it) spins perfectly fine.

My question is. Do I just need to replace the capacitor for the motor or should I just go ahead and replace the entire motor itself? It's a single speed so I figure I might have to put a few hundred down to buy a full motor and while I would do it myself (I am HVAC certified). The people who installed this unit did it in a rather annoying way. There is no easy way to get to the motor without removing the entire squirrel cage, holder, motor, and capacitor.

If it helps, the motor hums (pretty loudly) but won't start even if I try to kick start it. Instead it locks itself and won't spin until the motor has shut off (quit humming).

Edit: Just got it running for a minute on "heat" rather than A/C. It sounded like the fan was clicking while spinning and it only lasted for about 2 minutes before it shut itself off and began to hum again.

The heat is starting to pick up and I'd like to get this solved before it gets unbearable so that people who come to look at the house aren't immediately turned away by a heatwave hitting their face downstairs.

Last edited by IrishRedCap; 05-25-14 at 09:22 PM.
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Old 05-26-14, 07:37 AM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 2,103
I would start with the cap. On most motor replacement you have to remove the whole housing.
Old 05-26-14, 10:19 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 11
I had checked the cap. Cleaned it up a bit and put it back. Then I tried something. I put the door back on the unit and pulled it back slightly to jump start the fan that way. It is running right now and actually blowing cold air so I will see how long this works, or if it fixed it.

I appreciate the response.

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