The Importance of the Run Capacitor

testing on capacitor Bad Capacitor

Run Capacitors for your A/C System

      Keeping you informed and educated about the little things that make all of the difference for your Phoenix Air Conditioning Unit is the best way we know to keep you cool and comfortable through the extreme heat of our long summer months.  Knowledge can equal peace of mind.

What is a Run Capacitor?

      A capacitor or condenser as it is sometimes referred to, is commonly used in electronic devices.  It is a combination of three objects, a pair of conductors for sending electricity and a dielectric which is some form of non conductive materials.  An electrical field is created between the two conductors which then stores energy.  This stored energy is used to boost current needed to maintain a charge during constant use of a motor as in your Air Conditioning Unit. 

In the case of the typical Air Conditioning Unit there are dual capacitors, one for the fan motor and the other for the compressor motor. The run capacitor is for the fan motor and the one for the compressor is called the start capacitor.  The Run Capacitor maintains a relatively constant voltage supply for the purpose of increasing the torque of the fan motor on start up.

When Should I check my Run Capacitor?

      If a run capacitor is not working or is not the right size for your unit it does not always shut your system down.  Rather, it throws off the magnetic field, causing the fan motor to run unevenly increasing energy noise and decreasing efficiency with a possibility of causing overheating problems and other performance issues.   The best clues will be the sluggish running of the fan motor or slow start up of the fan motor, with noises you may not have heard previously.  In extreme cases the fan motor will just not start up, so always consider the run capacitor when a fan motor is not working.

 

Do It Yourself or Call A Professional

 

      A multi-meter is required for capacitor testing.  If you are comfortable with the use of a multi-meter you may consider testing it yourself, there are always good instructional articles and videos on the internet.  However if you are not comfortable with using a multi-meter devise it is best to call a A/C Professional in Phoenix. 

Replacement of The Run Capacitor

 

        The Run Capacitor can be quickly diagnosed by a professional and replacement is equally fast, your Air Conditioning Technician can ensure the proper size Run Capacitor is installed providing a smooth running fan that starts up the first time every time.  A run capacitor is not something that is usually diagnosed during routine maintenance.  It does not gradually go out; it is either working or not working.  So if you feel your fan is not working to full capacity or hear it struggle on start up, call your Air Care Cooling & Heating LLC Professional right away.  This quick fix will keep your system running well and keeping you and your space cool.



         

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