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ComfortZone
ComfortZone, HVAC Technician
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 516
Experience:  10 years in the HVAC industry.
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my air conditioner is not running. The fan blows, and the

This answer was rated:

my air conditioner is not running. The fan blows, and the filters have been recently and regularly changed. The fan in the outside unit doesn't turn on. The unit buzzes briefly once in a while as though there is electricity flowing into it. The motor housing for the fan is much hotter than seems justified per outside temperature.
Chat Conversation Started
ComfortZone :

It could be the fan motor is bad. Can you spin the fan blade at all?

Customer:

Yes, the fan blades spin freely when pushed.

ComfortZone :

Follow the electrical wiring comin out of the house to that outdoor unit, you will see an access panel. Take that panel off the unit and you should see a silver cylinder. That is the capacitor. Does it look like a soda can that was left in the freezer too long? Picture follows.

ComfortZone :

Full Size Image

Customer:

Yes, the cylinder looks like the one above

Customer:

Is there anyone attending to this chat

ComfortZone :

yes

ComfortZone :

If it looks like that one and it is bulging like that one, you need a new capacitor

ComfortZone :

You will need to get one that is the same size. By that I mean if this one is a 35/5 MFD 440 VAC that is what you need to purchase.

ComfortZone :

Anything more and it will overpower the unit, anything less and it will not run right.

Customer:

It's domed at the top where the wires connect. The sides are not buldging.

ComfortZone :

That is a bad cap. A bulging top means it has exploded internally and must be replaced. That is why your unit is not working.

Customer:

Do have a recommendation for how to order or purchase a new one?

ComfortZone :

You may be able to get one at a Johnstone supply if there is one in your area. Another place is Grainger. You can also try a local AC supply house. The problem with supply houses is they generally do not sell to homeowners

ComfortZone :

Check here for a Johnstone location near you

Customer:

Thanks so much. I appreciate your trouble!

ComfortZone and other HVAC Specialists are ready to help you

Not a problem. This is a fairly easy repair. Just make sure you note location of wires when switching out the cap.