Trane XE1000 tripping breaker

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Old 10-02-14, 05:54 AM
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Trane XE1000 tripping breaker

Having problem with air compressor breaker tripping. Night before last tripped sometime during the night and awoke at 4 a.m. to find breaker tripped, fan still blowing, ac unit off. Breaker would not allow reset. Turned everything off and called a/c company to respond in a.m. Took sides and top off, checked compressor, said it was strong, checked capacitor said it was still "okay", as others have noticed in past it is getting weak but still at 16-17 whatever that means. Freon is good. He pulled outside breaker during all this. Went in and reset breaker, put outside breaker back and turned a/c on and worked fine from 5 p.m til sometime after midnight when I awoke and found it tripped again at 3 a.m. Breaker will not reset even with inside unit turned off. A/c kinda stumped at what was causing issue, he didn't test the amps on breaker but said they could replace if needed.

Have had that breaker replaced 3 yrs ago from 30 to 40 amp by electrician who also mentioned maybe doing a hard start kit. A/C unit says minimum circuit ampacity 28., recommends 40 amp breaker. Electrician said that was a no no. Checked with county electrical compliance guy who confirmed 40 amp should be suffice and spoke of hard start if issues. A/c guy is thinking maybe a weak breaker causing issue. Have them coming back later this date to check again to attempt to find problem. Unit ran on 30 amp breaker for 14 yrs before 40 amp installed, unit is old at 16.5 yrs, but I am still trying to squeeze life out of it. Any thoughts appreciated.
 

Last edited by gardenbuff; 10-02-14 at 06:08 AM. Reason: additional info
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Old 10-02-14, 07:24 AM
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16-17 sounds a little fishy to me. That reading is a little wacky. Ask the tech to clarify.
 
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Old 10-02-14, 07:59 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

checked capacitor said it was still "okay", as others have noticed in past it is getting weak
If others have noticed in the past that it checks weak..... REPLACE it.
 
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Old 10-02-14, 09:18 AM
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Still waiting

Window of 12-3, although yesterday was same and it was 4:30, anyway, have no problem replacing capacitor, if you think that is the issue, but why don't they tell me that instead of saying it is still okay. I was thinking new capacitor, hard start and replace 40 amp again and if that doesn't fix, got with entire new unit. I just don't want to go with new unit and still have the problem. I did find the condenser wasn't draining outside after the tech left and probably clogged, blew it out with garden hose and it was draining when last checked, will have them check that as well. The fan kept going both times it tripped, don't know if clogged drain could cause these issues. Speaking of new units, does anyone have a idea what to go with? Surfing online I find negativity on every single brand there is. Obviously people will complain more than commend, but it doesn't help consumers when they are searching for a new unit. My headaches have mostly been with the indoor air handler/condenser sweating and clogging. Thanks for your input.
Also read somewhere to check the breaker for warmth/hot relative to bad breaker, Did so a few times last night and no warmth out of ordinary, checked when I found it a 3 am not warm then either. Breaker box is west wall inside garage with full afternoon sun.
 

Last edited by gardenbuff; 10-02-14 at 09:23 AM. Reason: additional info
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Old 10-03-14, 04:55 AM
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I have seen the crank case heater short out on that unit many times. Isolating it and testing it might prove a much less expensive repair.

The compressor should be isolated and tested across each terminal and to ground as well.

The capacitor rating and capacitor readings should also be checked and listed for you.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 03:59 PM
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Problem solved for now

The issue has been resolved, but not before some drama, aka a meltdown. The a/c tech, who stated he has been doing this approx 7 yrs now, was sent back for a second time. He did not check anything on the outside unit, but immediately concluded it had to be the breaker, which I had replaced by an electrician from a 30-40 amp two years ago. (The electrician said at that time to try a hard start if tripping became an issue. A county building inspector also reiterated the same thing about the hard start. I relayed this info to the tech for a second time, as this was mentioned on his first visit and he said the compressor was fine, and again said hard start was not needed) The tech grabbed an old 40 amp from his truck that he said was just a temp til he could get a new one, slapped it in, reset the breaker and the ac unit came on. He didn't check to see if it would come back on after a cycle, he left. Guess what, after the house cooled, it shut off for five minutes,...I am holding my breath in anticipation. I heard the air handler kick on, the ac unit kicked on for a few seconds and shut down.

Checked and the breaker was tripped Now it is 5:30 and everyone has gone home. Get the on call tech via answering service. He says he has two others ahead of me and an hour out from the first, doesn't know what he is going to find and doesn't know when he can come. I said never mind. He then asked what the problem was, I gave him a short one minute run down, he said, sounds like the compressor is pulling too many amps on start up and causing the breaker to trip, you may need a hard start I sweat thru the night, no breeze outside, ceiling fan just swirling hot air. 8:01 a.m. I am on the phone, and amazingly very calm as I relay how agitated, hot, tired from only about six hrs sleep over the past two nights, and money expended to be told about the hard start I asked about the first day. The lady was understanding and said she would send a senior tech this time.

He arrived shortly before 11 a.m. He was cautious when asking what the problem was. I asked if he had been filled in to date, he said somewhat...I filled him in from start to finish. He emphasized that a hard start was only a band aid, I acknowledged that I was only seeking a couple more months. Immediately upon removing the side of the ac unit he says he sees burnt wiring in the contactor which is an issue. The first tech actually pulled those wires and never noticed this. Sr, over twenty yrs experience, then does a running start of the compressor and finds it is drawing too many apps on start up and a hard start may help. Neither of these issues were found by the first tech, nor did the first tech try a running amp check. He replaced the contactor showing me the burned/pitted areas and the contacts virtually melted down the sides. He showed me the running amps and the issues. He installed the hard start. Did a couple of starts with amp readings to be sure things had improved and they had. Capacitor is fine. He put my old breaker back and gave me full credit for that incident. The unit has now stopped and started a good thirty times with no issues. I got an estimate for a new install for replacement of entire system in the next few months, if everything holds up that long. He said prices are better in FL during winter months, but before tax returns come in. Looking online the parts could be bought at HD for 25-30 bucks if one is electrically inclined. The markup was 100 percent on the components, so I spent a good 400 with the original service call fee. But when you consider they have to pay rent, insurance, van, liability, tires, phone bills, cell phones, salaries, and advertising it is understandable, although a hit to the wallet. Hopefully my pain and suffering helps someone out there, and thanks to all who offered their expert opinions. The bottom line...Experience is priceless.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 05:03 PM
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Capacitor is fine
Capacitor wasn't fine..... that was why and where he installed the hard start kit.

Thanks for letting us know the outcome.... it is appreciated.
 
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Old 10-04-14, 05:49 AM
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I'm just a girl repeating what a experienced tech said to me. Seems if I recall correctly he said I had two of something, which I think were capacitors, one for the fan and one for the compressor. I think he was holding the fan capacitor in his hand when he said it was okay. Should he have clarified, yes. All I know for sure is he immediately identified problem areas the first tech didn't find, and my ac kept me cool all night last night and is still running fine. He did ask if I noticed a difference in my electric bill, which had been excessively high the past two months. He said the issues I was having was probably the culprit. I just like to watch what is being repaired so some inexperienced person doesn't try to replace something that should still be good or a less than honest tech trying to take advantage of me.
 
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