Broken Capacitors: How to Prevent the Most Common AC Repair

An air conditioning capacitor jump starts the motor and keeps it running. Here’s how to fix one when it breaks down, and who to call when you need help.

Every air conditioner component is important to its overall function, and most repairs end up related to its electrical system. Even one faulty part could cause an HVAC system to malfunction or otherwise become inefficient.

A breakdown of an essential element like a capacitor, however, could shut it down completely. Here’s why the part is so essential, how to know if it’s acting up, and what to do when you notice a problem.

Broken Capacitors

Capacitors: What They Are and What They Do

The capacitor component of an air conditioning unit is a lot like the battery of a car, responsible for sending the electrical impulse that sparks the engine to start.

There are three essential motors involved with an HVAC system. Capacitors impact their effectiveness by jumpstarting the motor, regularly sending impulses to keep them running, and keeping an outside fan functioning efficiently. Without this essential part, the AC unit’s motor won’t work.

How to Diagnose Capacitor Wear and Tear

Air conditioner capacitors have a lifespan, just as car batteries do, and will eventually give out. You may experience any of the following when yours has reached the end of its service life:

  • A clicking sound from within the HVAC unit
  • The motor not coming all the way on
  • Humming from inside the unit
  • A boot-up process that may take longer than normal
  • Hard starting, with the system automatically shutting off after turning on

Any of these symptoms could indicate a failing or failed air conditioning capacitor, and likely mean your residential or commercial HVAC unit will require repairs. Call a technician you trust at your earliest convenience to avoid damage to the system and get your AC back up and running.

AC Repair in Augusta GA

How to Avoid Wrecking an AC Capacitor

Regular maintenance is key to keeping any HVAC unit operating at its best. It’s important to have your residential or commercial system serviced a couple of times each year to ensure proper functioning, typically in the spring before the summer heat wave hits and in the fall before the winter months approach. Summer and winter put the most strain on your HVAC unit, as it runs nearly constantly during both seasons to keep your home or work environment comfortable.

A maintenance technician will come to your home or business and run through a checklist of essential HVAC components to ensure optimal activity, including inspecting your capacitor and its effectiveness in all three motor components. Tell your engineer if you have experienced any of the indicators listed above, or if you’ve noticed the following:

  • Noisier-than-average system functions
  • Grinding, banging, clanging, or other harsh and unnatural noises
  • Warm air blowing when using the air conditioning function
  • Cold air blowing when using the heating function
  • Excess humidity
  • Higher-than-average electric bills
  • Temperatures that do not seem to match the number on the thermostat’s display

An HVAC unit functioning at sub-optimal levels may indicate that an element is on the fritz. This could potentially stress other system components, as breakdowns can cause others to work harder or not work at all. Routine maintenance and immediate care when something goes wrong are the best ways to avoid missing out on the cool air your system is supposed to be creating.

Need Expert Help? Give Sig Cox a Call!

Routine maintenance and immediate care when something goes wrong are the best ways to avoid missing out on the cool air your system is supposed to be creating. When the issue has to do with the system’s electrical components, we don’t recommend trying to repair them yourself.

If you suspect you have a faulty capacitor, don’t hesitate to Contact Sig Cox to schedule a service call today.

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Customer Reviews

best hvac company in Augusta
“I called 6 other companies when my AC stopped pushing air at 5PM. None of them seemed to want my business. When I got to Sig Cox, the guy who answered the phone was polite, knowledgeable, and was even trouble shooting with me before sending someone out. The agent got to my house in 30 minutes, troubleshoot, and fixed the problem in another 30. He even topped off the freon for free. The pricing was definitely agreeable. You’d get charged the same or more with any other company. Some of the best customer service I have seen. You should absolutely consider Sig Cox for you HVAC problems, I won’t be looking anywhere else.”
Nicholas Brennan
Nicholas BrennanGoogle Review
“These people are amazing. After hiring Sig Cox the first time to fix my HVAC unit about a year ago, I was more than happy, to say the least. Then about a week ago I had them install a new HVAC unit for me. This is by far the best a/c repair company in Augusta GA. They are professional, timely, and really take care of their customers. I highly recommend them and proudly give them an A+ rating! Thank you all so much!”
Chris Kirksey
Chris KirkseyGoogle Review
“This company did some work for my mother-in-law, of which she was quite pleased, so she recommended them to us. We had a downstairs unit that just wasn’t putting out any cool air. They came by post haste and assessed the unit, gratis. Of course it was a compressor failure so we had to make the hard decision to buy a new unit or fix what we had. The advice we got from our man on the scene was honest and sincere.
Since we had an older unit that used the phased out Freon and compressors are ugh, expensive, we went with a new unit. We decided on the Amana since it had a lifetime warranty on the compressor and rated well in Consumer Reports.
A month later the other unit failed and we replaced that as well. Six Cog worked with us on the price, we were never hassled on the payment, nor did they demand any payment on the spot and never did I feel pressured into anything. The install was smooth, fast and highly professional. Both units fired up, granted a month apart, and the house was cool almost immediately.
This company has a great reputation from what I can garner in the community, and I’m here to tell you that I recommend them highly as well. Please note that this is first recommendation I have ever put online.”
Donald Bradshaw
Donald BradshawGoogle Review
“Very good experience. The Service Technician, David, went above and beyond to assist us in our AC repair.”
Daniel Brown
Daniel BrownGoogle Review
“From the first time that Mr. Boarwright came out, I knew that your company was top of the line. None [of the other companies] laid it out on paper like Sig Cox.”
Steven Burris
Steven BurrisGoogle Review
“Thank you and your crew for your profession assistance in solving our unique heating and cooling situation that involved two seperate zones.”
PJ Rodgers
PJ RodgersGoogle Review
“It was a pleasure doing business with your staff. They were professional and provided the solution to our problem.
Margaret Brubaker
Margaret BrubakerGoogle Review
My air conditiong system went out, Sig Cox was recommended so I called them. Technician Andrew came out, was on time, and he properly diagnosed the problem. He had the part ordered. When the part came in, Nolan installed the part perfectly. Both technicians were very professional and knowledgeable. I even talked to the owner of the company who is involve day-to-day with his company. Very nice people to deal and they really go beyond what’s expected to help you get things fixed. I highly recommend Sig Cox!! Ask for Andrew or Nolan, they know what they’re doing!!
Dan Can
Dan CanGoogle Review
“We had a heating and air company we were satisfied with, but when we needed a new unit we went with Sig Cox because of the deal we couldn’t beat. We have been SO impressed with everyone we have worked with, from the customer service, to the salesman, to the technicians, they are all so friendly and professional! We will be loyal customers from now on!”
Ashley Marks
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