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mark1234

join:2012-07-24
Dallas, TX

Air conditioner fan motor replacement cost

(Commenting to an older post about home repair do-it-yourself) Older post mentioned paying a repairman $548 to replace fan motor in home a/c unit. I replaced my fan motor last night in my home a/c unit myself. Took about 30 min. Motor cost $78 at Grainger, part # 4M205. 208VAC/1Ph 1/4 HP 1.8A 1075 RPM with 1/2" shaft. Replaced capacitor too, cost $5. I did not pay any repairman to come fix it. It makes me sick that these repairmen get away with charging outrageous prices for simple work and they are calling you an idiot at the same time. No wonder our country's economy is bad. People want too much money for too little work. Americans are lazy in my mind. (Except me, of course ) One final comment: make sure you disconnect power and discharge your capacitor (stick screwdriver across leads) before removing old motor. Follow the wiring diagram on the new motor and make sure you set your fan blade height the same as the old one.

Expand your moderator at work

HarryH3
Premium
join:2005-02-21
kudos:3
reply to mark1234

Re: Air conditioner fan motor replacement cost

Better go ahead and order another cap to have on hand as a spare. The $5 Grainger ones don't last long at all.



cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT

1 recommendation

reply to mark1234

said by mark1234:

make sure you disconnect power and discharge your capacitor (stick screwdriver across leads)

Really, really bad idea.
Capacitors should be discharged using a resistor (an incandescent bulb is perfect for the job).
Discharging a capacitor with a screwdriver may lead to sparks flying.

itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA

2 recommendations

reply to mark1234

said by mark1234:

It makes me sick that these repairmen get away with charging outrageous prices for simple work and they are calling you an idiot at the same time. No wonder our country's economy is bad. People want too much money for too little work. Americans are lazy in my mind. (Except me, of course )

Yes, shame on him for trying to make a living for his family. Things he has to provide that you, the DIY doesn't:

1. Business Liability insurance
2. Warranty
3. Truck and tools (and insurance/gas/etc for truck)
4. Someone to answer the phone
5. Advertising
6. Stock of common parts
7. Education and certifications
8. Extra $$ to make up for periods of no work
9. Other stuff.

If it's so easy, have at it. Set up shop and undercut them all!


Dennis
Premium,Mod
join:2001-01-26
Algonquin, IL
kudos:5

said by itguy05:

If it's so easy, have at it. Set up shop and undercut them all!

I'm gonna argue that a 6.7x markup is a little excessive and that was the point of this post. Also yeah screwdriver across the leads is a baaaaaad idea.
--
My Blog. Because I desperately need the acknowledgement of others.

The Judd Family site!

laserfan

join:2005-01-14
Texas
reply to mark1234

said by mark1234:

Older post mentioned paying a repairman $548 to replace fan motor in home a/c unit... It makes me sick that these repairmen get away with charging outrageous prices for simple work...

So this was a simple job and you had to pat yourself on the back and post publicly about it. Is this a great country or what? Hey, you don't know the particulars of that earlier situation and it may have been different (and more costly) than your own.

itguy05 is right though, A/C repair companies have an appalling amount of overhead to be able to respond & perform on a 24/7 basis, and everyone needs to respect that, even if there might be a shyster-or-three in the business which happens as well.

One day you will have a problem you can't fix, because you have neither the training nor the tools, and you should be prepared to pay thru-the-nose for it, and be grateful to do so i.e. that help was available.


Zorack

join:2001-12-14
Fayetteville, WV
reply to mark1234

I paid only $200 for my fan motor replacement for my 1998 Carrier heat pump(hvac repair dude fixed this) and it was well worth it.



Zorack

join:2001-12-14
Fayetteville, WV
reply to mark1234

I'm considering having my freon line(R-22?) checked for leaks and replacing what was lost(probably going to cost me more since I hear that R-22 prices are higher now?). I'd rather leave it to a pro than to potentially f'up doing it myself.



49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3
reply to cowboyro

said by cowboyro:

Discharging a capacitor with a screwdriver may lead to sparks flying.

Not with a run cap as the coil of the motor will discharge it faster than one can get a screwdriver in there.

Wayne
--
Madness takes its toll, please have exact change ready…


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

said by 49528867:

said by cowboyro:

Discharging a capacitor with a screwdriver may lead to sparks flying.

Not with a run cap as the coil of the motor will discharge it faster than one can get a screwdriver in there.

Wayne

Evidently none of these folks ever discharged the high voltage lead on a CRT especially on a color tv.


49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3

1 edit

said by Jack_in_VA:

Evidently none of these folks ever discharged the high voltage lead on a CRT especially on a color tv.

For that task the best tool is a Jesus Stick which is an insulated rod with a metal tip connected to a hank of wire with an alligator clip on the other end. To use a Jesus Stick one connects the alligator clip to the chassis of the TV or grounded base of a phasor and then carefully touches any part of the device that might be charged up, like the plate clip of a CRT or the RF caps of a phasor and once it hits something charged one gets a nice loud snap and thinks oh Jesus I’m glad I didn’t touch that…

Color CRT’s where especially insidious as they ran 25Kv +, voltages that where high enough to produce x-rays requiring leaded glass on the front of the CRT even though there was a metal shadow mask on the inside of the face of the tube.

Wayne

--
Madness takes its toll, please have exact change ready…

iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25
reply to cowboyro

said by cowboyro:

said by mark1234:

make sure you disconnect power and discharge your capacitor (stick screwdriver across leads)

Really, really bad idea.
Capacitors should be discharged using a resistor (an incandescent bulb is perfect for the job).
Discharging a capacitor with a screwdriver may lead to sparks flying.

the sparks are not the problem. the problem is you can damage the capacitor if you discharge it too fast. if you are going to replace it, it's no problem.


Jabbu
Premium
join:2002-03-06
reply to mark1234

$5 cap? Damn I paid a bit more online, but replaced all 3. My motor was also about $130 online, the AC is 27 years old though.



Lurch77
Premium
join:2001-11-22
Oconto, WI
kudos:4

3 edits
reply to mark1234

said by mark1234:

Motor cost $78 at Grainger, part # 4M205. 208VAC/1Ph 1/4 HP 1.8A 1075 RPM with 1/2" shaft. Replaced capacitor too, cost $5.

Well there is part of the difference, I won't install crap if I don't have too.

As for the cheaper cost, of course you can do it significantly cheaper. You can repair your car far cheaper than a professional does as well. You can build a house far cheaper than a professional builder. I could go on on. The difference is you have no overhead because you don't do it day in and day out.

Come work in my shoes for a few weeks and see if you sing the same tune.


fifty nine

join:2002-09-25
Sussex, NJ
kudos:2
reply to Jack_in_VA

said by Jack_in_VA:

said by 49528867:

said by cowboyro:

Discharging a capacitor with a screwdriver may lead to sparks flying.

Not with a run cap as the coil of the motor will discharge it faster than one can get a screwdriver in there.

Wayne

Evidently none of these folks ever discharged the high voltage lead on a CRT especially on a color tv.

ESPECIALLY a Sony XBR...


49528867
Premium
join:2010-04-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL
kudos:3
reply to iknow

said by iknow:

the sparks are not the problem. the problem is you can damage the capacitor if you discharge it too fast. if you are going to replace it, it's no problem.

But again on an A/C unit that is not a problem as the motor discharges the cap once the power is removed.

Wayne
--
Madness takes its toll, please have exact change ready…


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

said by 49528867:

said by iknow:

the sparks are not the problem. the problem is you can damage the capacitor if you discharge it too fast. if you are going to replace it, it's no problem.

But again on an A/C unit that is not a problem as the motor discharges the cap once the power is removed.

Wayne

+1

Basic electronics/electricity fundamentals.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
reply to 49528867

said by 49528867:

But again on an A/C unit that is not a problem as the motor discharges the cap once the power is removed.

Don't bet your life on it with a fried motor...
Basic safety.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

said by cowboyro:

said by 49528867:

But again on an A/C unit that is not a problem as the motor discharges the cap once the power is removed.

Don't bet your life on it with a fried motor...
Basic safety.

A fried motor would discharge it even faster. Basic electricity


pende_tim
Premium
join:2004-01-04
Andover, NJ
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast

said by Jack_in_VA:

said by cowboyro:

said by 49528867:

But again on an A/C unit that is not a problem as the motor discharges the cap once the power is removed.

Don't bet your life on it with a fried motor...
Basic safety.

A fried motor would discharge it even faster. Basic electricity

I have seen motor winding fail "open" on occasion. In that case the cap could be charged.
Best to always discharge a cap, especially when you are into unknowns like a failed system. You really don't know what is going on and a surprise could be nasty, especially if you are working in an awkward place.
--
The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits.

Aranarth

join:2011-11-04
Stanwood, MI
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..

said by pende_tim:

I have seen motor winding fail "open" on occasion. In that case the cap could be charged.
Best to always discharge a cap, especially when you are into unknowns like a failed system. You really don't know what is going on and a surprise could be nasty, especially if you are working in an awkward place.

I was just about to say the same thing.

While the motor coil shorting out is far more common. You will sometimes see it breaking open because of mechanical vibration.
This is more common on engine starter motors than AC units. (Even then really rare.)


Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3
reply to Zorack

I had to have a weekend call out due to my unit freezing over.
My system had leaked 3 lbs in 2 years.

When the tech left, there was a 17 degree difference between intake and a register.

Service fee was $220.

The inside temp of the house rose from 74F to 84F in 7 hours.
--
Getting it Done.



Zorack

join:2001-12-14
Fayetteville, WV

That was for replacement and the leak test?


Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
reply to Daarken

said by Daarken:

My system had leaked 3 lbs in 2 years.

Did he find and repair the leak?


Daarken
Rara Avises
Premium
join:2005-01-12
Southwest LA
kudos:3
reply to Zorack

He did not perform a leak test, only replacement.
It was Saturday so I didn't want to pay weekend rates more then I had to.
--
Getting it Done.



Jabbu
Premium
join:2002-03-06

My system leaks 1-2lb a season... Its old and we are purchasing a new home as we speak.