Run Capacitor

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Old 06-20-16, 07:08 PM
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Run Capacitor

I have two questions:

What is the average life a of run capacitor?

Is "40 / 5 Mfd 440 Volt Dual Round Run Capacitor" for Payne Model #561AJ048-B?


They told me 10 years ago that I have to change out my AC. Fortunately, it has been running fine each summer. However, I noticed that I have to change out my run capacitor every 2 years. Since when I installed the 3 wire hard start kit, the duration has extended an extra year which makes it a total of 3 years.

I thought the installation of a 3 wire hard start kit would eliminate the need for capacitor replacement? I guess I am wrong.

Usually time for a new capacitor is when there are signs of bulges at the cap or bottom of the capacitor. There is no bulge this time around. I will get a new capacitor tomorrow and will find out if it is the capacitor or the fan motor.
 
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Old 06-20-16, 07:15 PM
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You have a start capacitor and a run capacitor..... correct ?

The hard start kit only takes care of starting.
Caps don't have an average life. It depends on the quality of the cap and the condition of the compressor.
 
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Old 06-20-16, 07:25 PM
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I believe a start capacitor is in the furnace next to the blower. I replace that 3 years ago. I replaced the run capacitor in the condenser unit about 3 years ago too. It is around the same time I had the hard start kit installed.

Thanks PJMax
 
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Old 06-26-16, 02:01 AM
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I bought a new run capacitor. I noticed the new one is smaller than the current one.

Does this mean the new one won't last as long since it is smaller, in both height and diameter?
 
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Old 06-26-16, 07:03 AM
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Not necessarily. As with most electrical/electronic items, improvements in manufacturing techniques and technology often lead to smaller size without impacting quality or reliability. OTOH, it could be a cheaply made low quality cap where corners were cut. Really hard to tell.

There are several things that can shorten cap life; probably most common is high temperatures. Heat is generated inside the cap during operation (not much you can do about that) but also reflects the surrounding environment. For example, since you are in CA, if your outdoor unit bakes in the sun all day the internal temperature will be a lot higher than a unit in more temperate climes. When it's running there is airflow to help keep temp reasonable, but when it's off it just sits there baking.

Shading the outdoor unit without impeding airflow can help with this.
 
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Old 06-26-16, 10:09 AM
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Thank you for the extensive reply CarbideTipped.

When I bought the house in 2001, the AC came with the house which was made in 1991. When I changed the capacitor out for the first time, it was 2005. I think it was a GE Genteq. Since then, I have tried other brands but this time I went back to GE Genteq and I noticed that it is smaller than other capacitors. I will take your information above.

Originally Posted by CarbideTipped
Shading the outdoor unit without impeding airflow can help with this.
I was thinking about this yesterday. It gets bake from 1 pm to 7 pm.
 
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Old 06-27-16, 05:06 AM
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CarbideTipped, I placed a couple sheets of plywood about 6 inches from the condenser, for shading. Will this compromise the condenser?

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/kjqh1z90z...Dqa7kuoza?dl=0

Thanks
 
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Old 06-27-16, 07:25 AM
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CarbideTipped, I placed a couple sheets of plywood about 6 inches from the condenser, for shading. Will this compromise the condenser?

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/kjqh1z90z...Dqa7kuoza?dl=0

Thanks
6 inches is a bit to close. You want to shade it, not restrict the airflow.
 
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Old 06-27-16, 08:50 AM
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May be because it is made in China, not the sun. Try one made in USA next time.
 
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Old 06-28-16, 06:26 PM
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https://www.dropbox.com/sh/e6d4kds6m...B1qoEozBa?dl=0

If you review the pictures, there is only one corner where the plywood is 6 inches from the corner. The plywood provide adequate shade but does not restrict the airflow. I think this should be OK?

Question:

I included a picture in the link. Is it normal for it to sweat next to the condenser area?

Thanks
 
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Old 06-28-16, 06:51 PM
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Yes, that line can easily be below the dew point when it's hot and humid; that's why It's insulated, to prevent condensation from forming all along it.
 
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Old 06-28-16, 07:26 PM
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I thought you might have surrounded the condenser with plywood. LOL.. Yeah, what you've got shouldn't be a problem.
 
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Old 06-28-16, 09:24 PM
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Thank you for the reply CarbideTipped.

CrabJoe, yeah, from the pictures (in 2D), it looks like I enclosed the condenser with the plywood sheets. The closest point of contact (about 6 inches) is that one corner. Thanks CrabJoe.
 
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