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License: #888103

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License: #888103


Are Your AC Capacitors Malfunctioning?

Monday, May 14th, 2018 at 11:00 am

technician-workingAt some point, you are going to need air conditioning repair in Reedley, CA. We kind of dove right into it there, but we don’t want to set up unrealistic expectations for your system. Your air conditioner is more complex than you may realize, and it has a lot of different components that you may not be familiar with. With the wear and tear that your system faces each season, it should come as no surprise that, even with routine maintenance, repairs are a matter of “when,” not “if”.

While some problems with your air conditioning system are pretty tough to spot, others have pretty obvious symptoms. The capacitors in your air conditioner may fail, and when they do, the warning signs are not that difficult to recognize. You may not understand immediately what the problem is, but you’ll notice that there is a problem. Here are a few red flags to be on the lookout for.

What Do Capacitors Do?

There are different kinds of capacitors, and different types of systems may use different ones made of different materials. For today’s purposes, we are going to talk specifically about start capacitors and run capacitors. These are very common, though again, different systems may incorporate them in different ways depending upon the mode of operation.

A start capacitor, as you may have guessed, plays a role in your air conditioning system when the system needs to start up. This requires a fair bit of energy (which is why short cycling is such a problem), and the start capacitor basically just gives the system a bit of a boost to really get it going. It creates a phase shift that allows the system the torque that it needs to get over the initial hump in starting up.

A run capacitor, on the other hand, is used to keep the system running regularly. This capacitor operates continuously to adjust the current that the system uses in its operation. In doing so, it allows the system to run reliably, so that it can continue operating in full cycles in order to cool your home effectively.

Signs of Trouble

Because these different capacitors serve different functions, signs of trouble with them vary a bit. If you have a bad start capacitor, then your system will struggle to start up reliably. Makes sense, right? You may just hear a humming noise rather than hear the motor starting up, and if left unresolved, this could actually lead to the motor burning out.

A bad run capacitor may result in this humming sound as well. You will also likely notice that, while the system is able to start up, it is going to cycle down prematurely. Remember, this type of short cycling will both drag down the efficiency with which your system operates and it puts a lot of strain on the system as it is forced to restart over and over again. Should you notice any irregularities with the operation of your air conditioning system, call for repairs right away.

Schedule your AC repairs with California Indoor Comfort Inc. Where comfort and technology come together.

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