Tips for old AC maintenance?

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Old 04-17-20, 08:52 AM
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Tips for old AC maintenance?

We have an older AC unit that I want to try refurbishing before I replace it entirely. See attached for photos. Here are my questions:

1. The fan is completely rusted but appears to be working correctly. Should I replace it under these conditions? I saw this if it's worth replacing, but I wonder if it's a standard size, because it looks close:

https://bit.ly/2KfeABq

2. Do they sell new fins? I think I saw a fin straightener so I'm wondering if that's worthwhile.

3. Are sound blankets worthwhile?

4. The insulation for the power cord looks a little frayed at the end. Should I replace the endpoint? I wouldn't know where to buy a new endpoint is so.

Thanks!
 
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Old 04-17-20, 11:03 AM
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How old is the condenser ?
If you don't know..... post the model and serial number.

The fans blades can be sanded and painted.
The fins can be somewhat straightened. They are not replaceable.
That seal tight fitting is repairable.
 
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Old 04-17-20, 06:43 PM
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Thank you, here is what is printed on my condenser:
MN: H23A563AB
Maybe this is it?
https://m.johnstonesupply.com/storef...ep?pID=B81-244

*Edit: the serial number is 324891 66485

Also, where can I get the mentioned seal?

Thanks!


 
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Old 04-17-20, 08:37 PM
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I did what you are thinking (overdue maintenance) a few years ago. Mine is a Trane.

1. The fan is completely rusted but appears to be working correctly. Should I replace it under these conditions? I saw this if it's worth replacing, but I wonder if it's a standard size, because it looks close:

I replaced mine has it had been bent over the years. This gave the most noticeable improvement in sound and vibration. It was significant.

2. Do they sell new fins? I think I saw a fin straightener so I'm wondering if that's worthwhile.
N/A. But I know they sell fin straighteners, I think they might be called combs. Yes, that's what they look like.

3. Are sound blankets worthwhile?
Mine had degraded after 15 years. This quieted the compressor, but not significantly. It was worthwhile as mine was falling apart.

4. The insulation for the power cord looks a little frayed at the end. Should I replace the endpoint? I wouldn't know where to buy a new endpoint is so.
I know Big Orange/Big Blue carry them in the electrical section. It's "sealtight" fitting (I think that's a brand name like Kleenex), not a "seal".
 
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Old 04-17-20, 09:24 PM
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That's your compressor. The condenser is the entire outside unit.
There will be an ID plate on the outside of the unit near where the power connects.

Sealtite.... a name for non metallic flexible conduit. Turn power off to the condenser.
Loosen that nut all the way. See if there is a plastic insert inside of it.
Usually a fitting pulls apart like that because it probably should have been a right angle fitting
and the flex line there is too short.

 
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Old 04-18-20, 03:56 PM
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Thanks for the replies! To answer the questions:

* I took a photo of the side of the condenser, but couldn't look up the appropriate part number. See attached.

* "The fans blades can be sanded and painted." I figured that but what about just buying new blades? It seems it would be a lot less expensive to just get new blades on be done with it. Are they all a standard size?

* Does Home Depot / Lowe's sell the part needed for the sealtite? I'd rather buy from a local store than have to special order something.

Thanks again.


 
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Old 04-18-20, 06:05 PM
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As I mentioned previously, yes they do sell all kinds of sealtight fittings. Just have to get the correct size and orientation. A right angle fitting might be better, you make the call.

Fan blades are not standard. The shank hole can be different. It is also important to get one with the same pitch/angle as the amount of air moved is determined by it and rotational speed, incorrect pitch can affect amp draw. I went with OEM rather than hassle with saving a few bucks.

Again, the new blades I put on made the most noticeable difference in noise and vibration. These rotate at 750+ rpm and need to be balanced.
 
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Old 04-21-20, 12:24 PM
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So I called my local store and they have the new fan in stock, the thing is that it's going to cost 4 times the price of the fan I linked to below. Is it more money because it's at a store or is the one I linked lower quality?
 
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Old 04-21-20, 02:49 PM
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I used Controls Central to get my fan, which was cheaper than local HVAC supplier (plus more helpful, they responded quickly via email). I would think after market might be lesser quality but still usable. I used OEM to guarantee no issues (but yes I paid for the name, Trane). The fan blade has to match the original specs though as mentioned otherwise it can affect performance/longevity.
 
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Old 04-21-20, 03:37 PM
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What’s wrong with the existing fan motor?
 
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Old 04-21-20, 05:10 PM
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Theres nothing wrong with the fan motor, it's just that the fan blades appear to be completely rusted.

I tried speaking with another online vendor and we weren't able to reproduce the model number of the condenser unit so they couldn't make any recommendations to me as far as a new fan. Should I sand it and repaint it? If so, what kind of sandpaper and paint should I use?
 
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Old 04-21-20, 06:24 PM
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The writing on the side of your condenser CM60-1EB comes back to a Goodman condenser model (based upon a google search). Ask your vendor or Control Central what fan goes with that. You even have the serial number written next to it. Or maybe someone on the board is able to look it up.

Have you looked at the fan itself to see if it has a part number stamped onto it?

Just because of the balance thing I would be cautious about sanding and applying paint. But if that is what you have to do....
 
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Old 04-22-20, 04:04 PM
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I will look around the fan more for that information. Tomorrow I'll see if I can take it with me to a local store to see if they may have an equivalent. It's really for aesthetics at this point.
​​​​​​
Edit: and I looked up the Goodman model number / serial with no luck. Not even Goodman could help me, rather referring me to local shops.
 
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Old 04-28-20, 10:20 AM
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Alright folks here's the progress I made so far:
  • Disassembled the entire unit.
  • Tried straightening all the condenser fins that I could. A few got ripped off in the process but it's still largely intact (see video).
  • Used compressed air to remove all the debris and dust from the housing, fan and fins.
  • Sprayed the fins with a degreasing solution and this appeared to remove a lot of dirt; when I sprayed it with water later it came off clear.
  • Took the lid and fan assembly to the local store and they recommended a new motor, not fan. They showed me how the actual fan shaft can be slightly pushed in and out of the motor and this indicates a faulty bearing, and that the motor should be making a noise and will fail sooner or later. Please see the attached video.
Here's the video:

https://youtu.be/O2FhJZP4Edc

My questions are:

1. If I should replace the motor, since it seems to be working OK, but I'm not sure how to gauge the noise it's making.
2. Should I install rubber feet under the condenser? The store assistant said not to as it would unbalance the unit; I'd rather leave it alone if it's not going to help. I don't feel vibrations coming into the room it's adjacent to. See attached.
3. Can I paint the unit to a color similar or a dark grey?
4. I couldn't get the coil guard fully installed on some of the sides of the unit; is this going to be a problem? Can I cut the coil guard to make it fit better? Otherwise, forcing it in here is going to be very difficult unless there's some procedure I'm not following.

Thanks

 
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Old 04-28-20, 10:37 AM
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That is a private video.
Rubber feet are not required and wouldn't help much under the unit.
You can paint the cabinet.
Coil guard ? You mean the outside cover. That should be left intact.

 
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Old 04-28-20, 01:16 PM
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As you spin the shaft do the bearings feel "gritty" or "smooth"? Motors have end play. Just hearing the shaft click back and forth is not a diagnosis for a bad motor since it is so subjective. Additional testing will require you to measure amp draw, resistance and such. New motor for your model is less than $100. Compare it to the old one and decide whether you want to install it.

If coil guard is the wire cage, it should fit back as it was designed unless the condenser coil has been tweaked out of alignment in which case you decide which is the lesser damage to make it fit. Retweak the coil or.... I usually try to return to factory, but I wouldn't want to damage something in the process.

Your model aside from being a Goodman is likely 20 years old and won't survive another 20. Your just buying some more years. I hate replacing working parts, but if your unsure of their longevity...me, I'd wait until it failed or was obviously on its way out. Might have diff opinion if you unlock the video.
 
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Old 04-28-20, 02:06 PM
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My apologies, the video is now unlocked:

https://youtu.be/O2FhJZP4Edc
 
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Old 04-28-20, 03:14 PM
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I hear the normal compressor sound. I don't hear anything from the fan.
 
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Old 04-28-20, 03:58 PM
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Yea, sound like a normal A/C. Doesn't look like it has any vibration either.

What's with the 3 caps? Is one a start assist?
 
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Old 04-28-20, 06:01 PM
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I wouldn't replace any component that's still working.

Just keep it clean and run it until it springs a leak or compressor fails. It could die tommorow or last another 10 years.

That looks like it was made in the early to mid 90s - goodman really cheapened their stuff after that.

Replace electrical parts as they fail. You can check the capacitors with a meter which reads capacitance and replace before any motor damage occurs.


 
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Old 04-28-20, 06:32 PM
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Thanks guys.

There are actually four capacitors there: one for the fan and motor and two spares whose top terminals I covered with electrical tape, if that might prevent them from rusting. On top of the housing of the motor's capacitor is the spare fan capacitor and the keyring for the fin coil straighteners I used hangs off the zip tie.

I'm guessing that's all I can really do short of buying a new condenser, correct?

 
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Old 04-29-20, 05:18 AM
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I would do as @user10 said and replace nothing. A little end play in the motor does not mean that the motor needs replaced. That end play is just normal wear from the motor sitting in the position it is in. I would not clean the fan blade, paint it or try to make the unit pretty. Fix the electrical fitting if you desire and clean the coil of excess dirt.. Then leave it alone until it quits running. Have it serviced once in a while. Mine has been running perfectly for 22 years with only minimal maintenance. my 2 cents
 
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