AC condenser problem


  #1  
Old 07-23-19, 02:06 PM
Z
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AC condenser problem

Hi Ė

Tried my house AC (first time this year) and it seemed to run fine for an hour or so. Later noticed the room temp hot and so checked the compressor unit outside. No fan running and no sound at all. Checked compressor breaker at electric panel and it was tripped.

Reset breaker and went outside quick as I could, and fan still not running - but this time I heard a steady hum. So I ran inside as fast as I could and kicked up the thermostat to shut off the demand to compressor. Then went back to electric panel to turn off the breaker - but the breaker had already tripped again.

Then looked to see if the capacitor looked bulged but did not see any bulge. But the capacitor looks rusty (please see pic).

Examined wiring and while touching the spade connector on a wire connected to the top of the contactor, the spade and tab and wire all just came apart. I thought it was all just rusted out, but looking again I think maybe the wire overheated and burned up at the connector tab (please see pics).

I have a new replacement capacitor on order since I donít see how replacing the capacitor could hurt. But could a bad capacitor cause some kind of power surge that would burn up the wire? The bad wire is going to the compressor. So I guess that carries a fair amount of current.

Also, when I get the new capacitor and replace the old one, could I strip the wire that burned up on the end and put it under the screw on the contactor for testing purposes? Or would that be the wrong thing to do? (I marked what Iím talking about in the pics).

I donít mind buying a new contactor but to me the contactor doesnít look like the problem Ė so far. If the compressor is shot I donít know how else to find out except to put in a new capacitor, wire up again and test.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!
 
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  #2  
Old 07-23-19, 03:05 PM
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Hi zoesdad, yes you can. --------
 
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  #3  
Old 07-23-19, 04:31 PM
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guyold -

Thanks for the help. I'm going to give at try when I get the new capacitor. I'll post back with the results. Thanks again!
 
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Old 07-26-19, 02:12 PM
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guyold Ė

Fixed and attached the red wire under the screw and installed a new capacitor. Seems to run OK now. Maybe the capacitor was just old and tired (like me, the big 75 in a few weeks) Ėlol.

Hope the compressor has some life left and the only problem was the capacitor. Guess Iíll know in the future.

Thanks again!
 
  #5  
Old 07-26-19, 03:31 PM
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Hi zoesdad, nice. Throw in a hard start when the compressor gets tired, it's like a kick in the pants. Happy b-day to you in a few.
 
  #6  
Old 07-28-19, 06:44 AM
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Hi, the burned conductor could indicate a loose connection at that terminal, did you check for other loose connections?
Geo
 
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Old 07-28-19, 07:07 AM
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Geo-

I did check all of the other connections and they looked fine and all were tight.

Thanks for the input.
 
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Old 08-22-19, 10:52 PM
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My guess is the capacitor is fine.. but now that you installed a new one we know its fine.. but for a wire to burn at the contactor terminal is not uncommon.. They usually come loose and arc and spark till they quit...but I would like to say be very careful with that since its not 115vac its 220vac and that will knock your d... stiff..
Great job of troubleshooting.. a service call would probably have been a couple of hundred.. its hard to find a company you can trust...I am 75 also.. so have been doing this for awhile... Thank god for circuit breakers...

You said you ordered the capacitor.. where do you order you ac stuff.. local or on the web?
 
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Old 08-23-19, 05:51 AM
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Hi, I probably would put a Fork type Stacon on that conductor and slide it under that terminal, better connection then the stranded conductor.
Geo
 
 

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