Compressor Overheating Portable AC Can Capacitor Be Cause?

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Old 06-03-14, 12:14 PM
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Compressor Overheating Portable AC Can Capacitor Be Cause?

I have a Maytag portable AC unit. My questions are: Is a capacitor either good or bad or can the ac unit still work if the capacitor is bad? Also, can a bad capacitor make the AC compressor over heat? That is the main trouble I am having. Nevertheless, the unit throws good cold air. Unfortunately, no one services this unit any longer and I cannot replace the compressor nor can I get any parts. The original capacitor was leaking when I replaced a set of bad bearings in the fan motor. Before I go out and look for the proper replacement capacitor, I thought I would check with you to see if it was a possible cause of the compressor overheating and worth the effort of finding a replacement capacitor. I am working on a picture of the unit's schematic for you if that will help. Thanks
 

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Old 06-03-14, 03:42 PM
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It's bad if it's leaking ->change it and see what happens.

A really plugged condenser coil could also cause the compressor to cycle on thermal limit. (with the bad capacitor the compressor may cycle on limit a few times before starting, or not start at all)
 
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Old 06-04-14, 09:40 AM
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Thanks Muggle for your help. I bought a new capacitor and the compressor tries to start and then turns off, tries to start and then turns off. The compressor soon heats up to where I can not touch it. I plug in the old capacitor and the compressor cycles on with no problem and cold air comes out as it should. But the compressor soon overheats so that I can no longer touch it. The condenser coil cooling fins were always free of blockage as portable ACs remain inside and do not get the wear and tear that window units get. The new capacitor is obviously not the right one or is defective. Do you still recommend that I try to replace the old capacitor to try and solve these AC symptoms?
 
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Old 06-04-14, 09:54 AM
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The new capacitor is obviously not the right one or is defective. Do you still recommend that I try to replace the old capacitor to try and solve these AC symptoms?
That's the only way to know for sure.
 
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Old 06-04-14, 11:27 AM
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The capacitor has an impact on running current -> once you've got the correct capacitor, check the running compressor amp draw.

Is the condenser coil clean?
 
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Old 06-05-14, 09:52 AM
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Thanks PJmax and Muggle for your advice. The evaporator coil fins are clean. I will go out and try to better match a new capacitor with the old capacitor. Furthermore, I am now thinking that the cylinder shaped tank that is piped between the hot coil to the chilled coil is the dryer, not the compressor. This is where the over heating takes place and where I cannot place my hand. There is a small electric motor with a drive shaft extending into the bottom of the hot coil. I am assuming that this is the acting compressor. I need to post you both pictures of this. Thank you for your patience as I need to round up a battery for my digital camera and that new capacitor.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 12:03 PM
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The compressor is normally sealed black can with wires leading to it.

Hot compressor is fine, but the pipe with no insulation leading to the evaporator should be warm.

A dirty evap coil won't cause the compressor to cycle on limit -> a plugged condenser or bad condenser fan will.
 
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