It can be very frustrating to turn your air conditioner on, only to find that the appliance isn't working. Many things can affect the functionality of modern air conditioners. One component affecting AC performance that most homeowners are not familiar with is the capacitor.
All air conditioners have at least one capacitor. When this component fails, the AC system will not produce any cool air. Learn more about capacitors so that you will be prepared to make any repairs needed to restore your air conditioner in the future.
What AC Capacitors Do
Capacitors are small electrical components that store electricity for future use. In an air conditioning system, the capacitor releases its stored electricity when the condenser and blower fan start up. This release of energy helps give the condenser and blower fan motor the extra jolt of electricity needed to start smoothly.
A capacitor will also help to regulate any voltage fluctuations that occur while your air conditioner is operating to prevent any damage to the condenser or blower motor.
Warning Signs of a Faulty Capacitor
It's essential that you are able to recognize the warning signs of a faulty capacitor if you want to protect your AC system against serious damage. Some capacitors degrade over time, while others fail suddenly. A sudden failure is easy to identify because your AC system will not engage.
It is the slow degradation of the capacitor that can go unnoticed. Some of the earliest indicators that your AC capacitor has started to go bad include an AC system that takes a while to start, an AC system that randomly shuts off on its own, and excessive humming noises while your AC is in operation.
You should contact an experienced HVAC technician as soon as you notice any of these warning signs so that you can replace the bad capacitor.
How to Fix a Faulty AC Capacitor
Unfortunately, there is no quick fix for a faulty capacitor. The only solution is to have an experienced HVAC technician remove the old capacitor and install a new one. Capacitors are relatively inexpensive components, so the repair costs should be minimal.
If you want to avoid any of the potentially costly damage that a faulty capacitor can cause within your compressor or blower motor, set up a capacitor replacement schedule with your HVAC technician.
The proactive replacement of your AC capacitor will ensure that your cooling system is never affected by a blown capacitor. If you need this or another AC repair, contact an HVAC contractor in your area.