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Thread: FIXED: FAS257S2A Frigidaire HARD STARTING again - Maybe lightning damage....

  1. #11
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    I just checked to make sure but the other cap is a 55 mfd. This one has never had an issue. The other came with a 40 mfd and has been a hard starter all its life and uses the same LG compressor.

    I will report back and take amp readings as well.

    Conor

  2. #12
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    Sounds good. Keep us posted.
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
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  3. #13
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    Anyway, here is the update. I went by the supply house and purchased the same 55 mfd capacitor used in the other basically identical AC unit.

    The unit kicks right on with a lot less noise and sounds a lot smoother.

    The amp draw curve is basically the same as the other non-problematic unit and a tad lower than with the other capacitor (40mfd). The unit kicks on and is pulling about 7 amps as soon as it starts and it runs up to around 10 amps after several seconds. This is a little lower than it was running with the 40 mfd cap so this tells me it is running more efficiently and that the factory specified cap (40 mfd) was likely quite undersized. It is a smooth start to about 7 amps and then gradually climbed a few more amps. There is no huge amperage spike at start anymore as there was with the other capacitor when it peaked at 24 and 32 amps the two times I tested the start amps prior to the capacitor replacement.

    I purchased a hard start kit but it remains in the package and I plan to return it to the supply house as I don't think it will be needed.

    Conor

  4. #14
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    Crap like this is why I hate big box stores. Both these units were purchased at Lowes by the previous owner. Remember that I work on computers for a living. I commonly see units sold at Wal-Mart and similar that are so under-spec'ed that they are basically unusable from the time they are removed from their box. So many corners are cut so they have a lower purchase price but are junk right from the start.

    I see 40 year old window AC units in places that look like they have been to war and they still run and cool well.

    I also just talked to the previous owner and the one that was giving me troubles was purchased first, but only be a couple months or so. I suspect a lot of warranty claims were being made due to the undersized caps and they upgraded that component in the newer models.

    Conor

  5. #15
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    Sounds like you found the problem and corrected it. When I have a service call on an appliance that has never been worked on before I assume the manufacturer used the correct parts. I always ask if the appliance has been serviced before and what was done. If it's been serviced before that's the first thing I check to see if it was done right. Hopefully it will keep working for you without anymore issues.
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
    ONLINE SERV TECH: ApplianceBlog.com
    CERTIFIED TYPE 1; TYPE 2.....REFRIGERATION SERVICE E.S.

  6. #16
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    We will see after a month or so. It seemed like it would always pop the breaker once or twice a month in the past. I will think it is solved after seeing it not flip for a couple months. I am guessing it was on a fine edge of tripping the breaker each time it kicked on with those current draws. The capacitor seems to be doing what it is meant to do. It provides the sudden surge of power needed to start the compressor and isn't producing ANY noticeable surge of amps at the service panel.

    Conor

  7. #17
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    Yes, I would have assumed that the manufacturer had used the correct parts as well. I find it funny that the unit had been giving me the same problems for years and suddenly its behavior is matching that of the unit that is not giving me troubles and only did once when I had to replace the cap on it as well.

    Remember I replaced the cap on this last summer and got it going but I guess that cap was probably overstressed and getting weak from being undersized.

    Conor

  8. #18
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    I wanted to give an update. The unit appears to be operating much better. I returned the amp meter to its rightful owner but I conducted several more readings and they were all much better than before. Again, the lights are not dimming and there isn't a hum from the panel when it kicks on.

    Something else I found interesting is that I didn't realize the blower fan was on the low setting. The compressor was continuing to cycle even during the recent extremely hot days with the temp turned way down. This is one of those fans where the blower and the condenser fan operate off of a single motor with a double-ended shaft. I guess that the compressor is sized to where it was dissipating more heat than the fan could remove so was cycling. I turned the fan speed up and the cycling has greatly reduced.

    I found an EPA site that suggested running the fan at max for best efficiency but said that running the fan at a slower speed is best for conditioning the air as moisture better condenses on the cooler coils and is removed by dripping. I think that on hot days I will keep the speed up and when it isn't so hot, I will run the fan on low.

    Conor

  9. #19
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    Glad to hear that Connor. Good job!
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
    ONLINE SERV TECH: ApplianceBlog.com
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