Friday, May 11, 2007

It appears my ACs mammaries have assumed vertical orientation

And it's the hottest couple days this year so far... Hell, it's 8:30 at night and its still just under 100.

The official temp today was 102, we saw 106 here. It's supposed to be 103 tomorrow; which usually means we'll see 108-110 on the ground (official temperature is taken 10ft off the ground over grass, not head height over pavement).

Oh, and the kids aren't with grandma this weekend.... great fun.

Update: Well, when it was still over 90 at 11 o'clock I decided not to take matters lying down... basically because I couldn't stand lying down.

So, I got out the tools and the flashlight; traced the problem down, and came up with a workaround.

Basically, after the condenser iced up earlier, the compressor wouldn't re-start.

I checked the switches, fuses, and lines; and they're OK. I'm getting juice everywhere, and the switch wire is getting a pop when the thermostat kicks in.

So, knowing the common problems, I start rapidly kicking the control switch a few times, until I hear the thing restart.

Anyway, I may have a dead bearing, a dead spot on the compressor motor commutator, maybe some bad brushes or some bad wiring; but I'm thinking the most likely problem is a bad solenoid.

Thing is, the "diagnositc" technique I used will get the damn motor turning with any one of those problems.

If you've got an intermittent wiring fault, or slightly dodgy brushes or commutator etc... then kicking the juice over a few times like that will jump the arc, and maybe kick the motor into life. If you've got a bad bearing, the quick hits from the motor can kick the bearing loose. If you've got a bad solenoid, the rapid switching can also slam the solenoid into action.

Of course, if it's any of those things, it's going to happen again; and eventually that won't work... or may even start a fire.

So, I'mna have to get somebody in and check things out, fix whatever the problem is ( may be wrong, but I don't think so) and to do a recharge to keep the damn thing from icing over in the first place.

Oh and in my inspection I discovered the foam insulation on the outside cooling pipes (what carrys the coolant to the air handler from the compressor outside) has dry-rotted or been rodent chewed off, so I've got bare uninsulated cooling pipe out there. Must be doing wonders for my efficiency...

Yeah I'll be fixing that tomorrow... or later today I guess (it's just before 1am right now).