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Whoaru99

Home A/C repair

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My brother just bought a house in Prior Lake and has some problems with the central A/C now that it's warmed up. Sounds to me like it might be low on refrigerant since he mentioned some frost on the lines.

Can anyone recommend a HVAC service outfit in or around Prior Lake that they feel comfortable recommending as a good, honest shop?

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Does the units fan turn on outside, when switched on?

Has he tried to clean the condenser fines yet? Is the unit in a shaded area?

Also the evap. coil could have junk on it (inside the heater/a/c unit in the house), if the air filter has not been changed properly.

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Good questions.

The details are kind of sketchy, but it sounds like it operates fine for a while, then starts blowing warm air.

Here is the excerpt from his email earlier today -

"Seemed to work ok when the temperature was in the mid 80’s, I had the thermostat set to 78 and didn’t seem to have a problem keeping that temp…only ran once and a while. But this weekend I noticed that the blower was running for a long time so I checked out a vent. The vent was blowing air, but not all that cool. I left it off all day on Sunday, and for kicks turned it on today and it seemed to kick out cool air (the compressor pipe was pretty cold/frozen) for a while, and about 15 minutes later the pipe was barely cool and the vent was spitting out warm air again.

Thoughts?"

He goes on to say the outside unit looks pretty clean, although there are some fins bent over.

I can call him tomorrow and ask more questions as necessary.

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I would say it is not a lack of freon by saying this:

Quote:
(the compressor pipe was pretty cold/frozen)

I would say have him check what I said and report back, unless someone esle says other wise.

Good luck

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My Dad and brother service and install AC units as well as other plumbing and heating related work.

If interested muleshack at hotmail and i can get you the info.

family run just the two of them and have been in the business since my dad was working with his dad many moons ago.

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MuleShack - my brother seemed to recognize the name when I gave him the e-mail address, so he may have already contacted the business.

Seems I may have inadvertently violated the forum rules by asking for referral/recommendation according to the Sticky I didn't see until now. My apologies to the FM site.

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First. Are the filters CLEAN????

dirty filters fill frost the coil.

2nd. Is the BLOWER up to speed??? Belt or direct drive?

3rd. Is the blower CLEAN?

4th. Is the EVAPORATOR coil clean? Full of hair/dust

All of those need to be checked before you can check the charge.

If you are going to have someone come out do these thing first.

So you don't have to pay them to do it. Might save you a hundred bucks!

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He says "yes/clean" as best he can tell to all these things except #2.

He is not sure if there is something wrong with the blower or not. He says it starts blowing, then seems like it "kicks in" and blows more after a short while - could be a 2-speed blower, I suppose?

He doesn't know the specific details of the furnace...yet.

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Long story short.

If the blower and out door unit are running it should be cooling. at lest some.

Don't keep running it, it's not going to fix it's self. You can do a lot

of damage by running a A/C if there is not enough refrigerant in it.

He should call a repair man.

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Talked to my brother last night and he said the repair man was there yesterday afternoon. Here is the report...

"Well, the guy came over today and did a bunch of tests, and came to the conclusion that he can’t tell if anything is wrong. He did say that the gas is just fine, right in spec, and the pressures are fine, and the current draw is as expected when the compressor is running. The only thing he noticed is that it’s running a few degrees hotter than normal, meaning instead of 20 degrees lower than outside temp it’s running about 14 or 15 degrees, because of the hail damage over the years to the cooling fins. Other than that, it seems to be fine…"

So, maybe the possibility to straighten some fins might help a little, but other than that, I guess it's see what happens when it gets hot again. Sounds like some heat is coming in a couple days.

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I just had the same thing happen the other day. Fan was running and the air coming out of the vents was warmer than normal. AC guy came out and the fluid were all pressurized everything was running normal. The problem was the capacitor. I could see the top was damaged slightly. Put a new one in and its like new again.

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They make fin combs for that job.

Altho a pocket knife will sometimes do a good job if your peasant(spelling)

Hail can really trash a condenser. If you have a lot of bent fins it will cost

you a lot in efficiency. I would recommend you try to straiten them out.

You did not say if the indoor blower is belt or direct drive.

If direct drive, is it wired for hi speed when in A/C mode?

If belt drive, speed it up. Belt should be close to if not at the top of the

motor pulley. (Remember) do not to tighten a blower belt to tight.... It's not

a car belt. Make it as lose as you can make it with out slipping.

At lest 1in. of play.

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I just had the same thing happen the other day. Fan was running and the air coming out of the vents was warmer than normal. AC guy came out and the fluid were all pressurized everything was running normal. The problem was the capacitor. I could see the top was damaged slightly. Put a new one in and its like new again.

Out of 6 calls today 3 were caps,,, not a bad day at all...

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Which capacitor? On the compressor?

I'd have thought the repair man would have looked at that, but...

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Most but not all A/C have a dual capacitors.

one side, run/start the compressor.

other side, run/start the out door fan.

Some A/C have a capacitor for each component.

Where most home owner make a mistake is, they see the out door

unit running/fan and assume the compressor must be running.

You ether have to listen for the comp. running, have gages on it to see

that it is running or see a amp draw with some type or instrument.

If a A/C unit is running and (cooling) but not as well as you might like

It's not likely to be a capacitor problem.

The best advice I can give any one if your A/C is not cooling.

TURN IT OFF AND CALL A REPAIR MAN......................

Running a A/C with a low charge will KILL it.

Plain+Simpull

Sure turn the power off and look under the cover look for burnt wires, bad contactor

swelled or leaking capacitor.

After that call a repair man.

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