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marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

Did I just "break" my AC?

I popped a circuit breaker today, my fault and I should have known it would happen. I was leaning to get the elec box because there is a plant in a pot sitting there. I lost my balance a little and hit the breakers for the AC unit. I turned them back on and forgot all about it.

I noticed that it was getting warm in here. The AC unit has a elec. box near it, with a long black bar inside. I was afraid to mess with it.

The top fan on the outside AC unit is not running (guess that's the compressor?) and I am starting to melt.

What can I do to try and fix this problem?
--
Team Discovery


Zach1
Premium
join:2006-11-26
NW Minnesota

Re: Did I just "break" my AC?

It sounds as if the outdoor box is nothing more than a pull-out disconnect (no fuses or breakers) but a picture would help confirm it. Did you check the circuit breaker again? If the unit was running when you accidentally switched off the breaker, there is a possibility the unit tripped the breaker while trying to restart. The time delay to prevent short-cycling is usually in the low-voltage control circuit which, in this case, didn't loose power.



jack b
Gone Fishing
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-08
Cape Cod
kudos:1
reply to marti

Shut off the AC on the thermostat either by moving the system switch to OFF or raising the setpoint higher than the room temperature. Find the circuit breaker for the AC that you hit earlier and switch it fully OFF and then back ON. Now restore the thermostat settings and see if it works.
--
~Help Find a Cure for Cancer~
~Proud Member of Team Discovery ~



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

said by jack b:

Shut off the AC on the thermostat either by moving the system switch to OFF or raising the setpoint higher than the room temperature. Find the circuit breaker for the AC that you hit earlier and switch it fully OFF and then back ON. Now restore the thermostat settings and see if it works.



I have already done that. Guess I will sleep on the couch under the ceiling fan (no ceiling fan in my bedroom). Outside unit is only a few months old, so maybe I can get away with getting service for free.
--
Team Discovery

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

Just to make sure that we understand. You had your breaker box open while leaning against it and tripped a number of breakers. You then turned them off and back on. Since posting in this thread you once again turned off the breaker to your AC and then turned it back on. Is this correct?



SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3

said by robbin:

Just to make sure that we understand. You had your breaker box open while leaning against it and tripped a number of breakers.

Exactly what I was wondering.
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims


marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5
reply to robbin

said by robbin:

Just to make sure that we understand. You had your breaker box open while leaning against it and tripped a number of breakers. You then turned them off and back on. Since posting in this thread you once again turned off the breaker to your AC and then turned it back on. Is this correct?

Yes. I turned off AC at thermostat and then turned breaker on and off. Then turned AC back on
--
Team Discovery

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

said by marti:

Yes. I turned off AC at thermostat and then turned breaker on and off. Then turned AC back on

Please don't take offense at this. We sometimes ask what seem to be simplistic questions. I take it you meant that you turned the breaker off and then back on. Is that correct? (It's hard to think straight when your AC is not working and at least here it is over 100 every day).

I don't think you broke your AC but it is hard to troubleshoot over the Internet.


marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5
reply to marti

I am sorry for not being clear. First time I hit the breakers by mistake I turned them back on. When I realized it was getting warm inside the house, I turned the thermostat off, turned the same AC breakers off and then on. I then came back inside the house and turned the AC back on at the thermostat.
--
Team Discovery



SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3

When you came back inside and turned the AC back on at the thermostat, did you hear the indoor fan (blower) come on?
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims



Raphion

join:2000-10-14
Samsara
reply to marti

In some systems, short cycle protection will not reset itself. I would set the thermostat to OFF for about 15 minutes, then set it back to COOL.



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5
reply to SandShark

said by SandShark:

When you came back inside and turned the AC back on at the thermostat, did you hear the indoor fan (blower) come on?

NO
--
Team Discovery


marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5
reply to Raphion

said by Raphion:

In some systems, short cycle protection will not reset itself. I would set the thermostat to OFF for about 15 minutes, then set it back to COOL.

Sounds like a good plan.
--
Team Discovery


SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3
reply to marti

said by marti:

said by SandShark:

When you came back inside and turned the AC back on at the thermostat, did you hear the indoor fan (blower) come on?

NO

Do you have natural gas or electric heat?
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims


marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

Natural gas



SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3

Go back outside, look carefully at all the breakers and make sure you didn't miss one of the smaller (single) breakers. Look at the breaker directory (if there is one) and see if you can find the breaker labeled/numbered for your furnace.
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

Steve,

Will have to go outside tomorrow morning. Too dark out there to see what I am doing, even with a flashlight.
--
Team Discovery



SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3

Okay. It's hot as hell here. Just trying to get you some A/C. Do you have a neighbor you can bother this time of night to help you?
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

Neighbor that could help is not home.
--
Team Discovery



SandShark
Long may you run
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-23
Santa Fe, TX
kudos:3

1 recommendation

If you were closer, I'd come over. Try to stay cool, if that's even possible.
--
Help the tornado and flooding victims


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to marti

If it were me (or if it were my mom I would advise to) one at a time turn off every breaker in the box and then turn it back on.



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5
reply to SandShark

Thanks Steve. I have several floor fans I can turn on. I can't open any windows, as don't have screens on most of them. I will be fine. After all I survived after hurricane Ike with no elec. for a week and a half. It wasn't that hot then, but the fans will keep me cool tonight.
--
Team Discovery



cob_
1310nm Of Goodness
Premium
join:2003-07-08
Tulsa, OK
reply to marti

Considering your inside blower isn't coming on, I would think the thermostat has a problem. Is this a programmable thermostat with a scheduler?



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

said by cob_:

Considering your inside blower isn't coming on, I would think the thermostat has a problem. Is this a programmable thermostat with a scheduler?

Yes. Don't use the scheduler part.
--
Team Discovery


cob_
1310nm Of Goodness
Premium
join:2003-07-08
Tulsa, OK
reply to marti

There is typically a switch on the control panel for the outside unit, which you can use to force the unit on. Can you try that and see if it will start up? Don't do it multiple times in a row, your AC unit times its cycles so that the pressure can equalize between cycles, you don't want to break it. Also, don't run it manually for a long period of time, if the blower inside isn't coming on, you'll just freeze the indoor coil.
--
"No matter how hard you push and no matter what the priority, you can't increase the speed of light."

- RFC 1925



marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

thanks

Edit: Inside fan is now working, as I got up on a chair and could feel air coming out of the vent.


disy

join:2003-01-02
Norwalk, CT

this is just a shot in the dark, sounds similar to what happened to me a week ago - if the outside is not working, it could be a duel capacitor (SP?). When we had a power dip, the capacitor blew. It was an easy part repair but did cost a little more than $200


laserfan

join:2005-01-14
Texas
reply to marti

Re: Did I just "break" my AC?

said by marti:

I popped a circuit breaker today...The AC unit has a elec. box near it, with a long black bar inside...The top fan on the outside AC unit is not running

First, the outside unit fan is "the fan" and not the compressor; that is the thing below the fan that looks like a motor. And the box outside with the "long black bar" is just a disconnect so a service person can work safely w/o going inside to flip a breaker.

Just tripping the breaker accidentally shouldn't have killed your A/C--what you did is no different from an ordinary power failure. But you may have two breakers for your system--one for the A/C (outdoor) unit and another for the Fan Coil (indoor) unit, and this latter would likely also power your thermostat. If the thermostat is "lit" (showing a display, not running off a battery) and the indoor blower is running, that confirms one breaker is OK. If the outdoor unit still isn't coming On then either that (second) circuit breaker is tripped, or bad, or the outdoor disconnect is pulled, or the outdoor unit's relay or start capacitor has died, or the indoor t-stat is not signalling the outdoo unit to come on.

If you aren't handy with a voltmeter then I suggest you call a service person.


marti
Color outside the lines
Premium,MVM
join:2001-12-14
Houston, TX
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to Raphion

Re: Did I just "break" my AC?

said by Raphion:

In some systems, short cycle protection will not reset itself. I would set the thermostat to OFF for about 15 minutes, then set it back to COOL.

That must have done the trick, as the unit is working. I didn't go outside to check until this morning. Guess it needed to be properly reset.

Thanks everyone! (and I will try to do better with AC terminology in the future)
--
Team Discovery


Cho Baka
Premium,MVM
join:2000-11-23
there
kudos:2

Cool!