ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Scenario: Compressor or Not?

Updated on July 13, 2019

Scenario: Your air conditioning is not working.

A service technician comes out and tells you that your air conditioning compressor (which is located outside) is no longer pumping refrigerant and needs to be replaced. This can be a major repair. Can you trust his diagnosis or not?

First let's talk about the different components of an air conditioning system: Most residential air conditioning systems are known as split-systems. A split system is where one component of the system is outside and the other component is inside, usually located in a closet or attic.The outside component is the condensing unit (which is where the compressor is located) and the inside component is the furnace/blower and evaporator coil. The air conditioning components are connected by copper tubing and run on 208/230 volts.

There are numerous ways you can check to see if it really is the compressor in your air conditioning unit. Ask the technician if he checked to see if the compressor has the proper voltage? He needs to tell you that the voltage is 208 or 230. If it is below this, then you could have a voltage loss problem instead of a compressor problem.

Did the technician Ohm out the compressor? There are three terminals on the compressor, usually located on the side of the air conditioning compressor. The terminals have wires running between them. They should show resistance between each terminal on an ohm meter. If you do not get a reading between any or all of the three terminals, the compressor could have a burned out winding or open winding as it is called (which basically means one of the wires between 2 terminals is burned open). Also the ohm meter should not show any resistance between any terminal and ground or the copper tubing. If it does show resistance between any terminal and a ground, the compressor could be shorted out. These two steps (ohming out the terminals and ohming to ground) should be done first. Then if the compressor passes these two tests, ask the technician if he replaced any starting components in the air conditioning unit? A simple start or run capacitor can cause the compressor not to run because the start or run capacitor has burned out due to heat or age. So again, the issue might not be your compressor at all but a simple starting component.

These are some of the questions you should ask your service technician before agreeing to the possible replacement of your compressor. The above advice is to inform you so that you can have a knowledgeable conversation with the service technician. This information is not provided for you to try and diagnose the air conditioning system yourself. The system is composed of moving mechanical parts and has very high voltage and you could be seriously hurt attempting repairs yourself. Let the professionals do their job.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)