Even the best air conditioners can sometimes break down, and a faulty compressor is a concern for any AC owner. Because caring for your cooling unit can often be confusing, we’ll show you how to test an air conditioner compressor in this article. And for more information on proper air conditioning unit care, you read our resource on how to turn off an air conditioner.
The compressor is perhaps the most critical part of an AC unit. It’s responsible for circulating the refrigerant through the system’s condenser coils so that it effectively cools the air. Think of it as the heart of the machine, which is why you should do all you can to keep it in top condition. Another critical part of AC repair is the capacitor. For this, we have a great resource on how to test an AC capacitor.
A wave or diode symbol should represent the continuity setting on a multimeter.
STEP 1 Power Down your AC Unit
Go to the fuse box with the circuit breaker panel that powers your AC unit. Switch off the power supply.
Remove the Access PanelUnscrew everything that fastens the access panel. Remove the panel so that the electronics and wires are showing.
STEP 3 Check for Damage
STEP 4 Locate the C, R, and S Terminals
You can purchase and replace an AC compressor yourself, but this is often expensive and better handled by an HVAC professional.
What are some signs of a bad AC compressor?
Common signs of a bad air conditioning compressor are loud noises coming from the machine and a lack of hot airflow from the outside unit.
Is it necessary to have a compressor in good working order?
Not only does the compressor regulate the cooling process, but a damaged compressor can cause a major leak of refrigerant, which can be physically harmful.
Are all AC compressors built the same?
There are different types of AC compressors, particularly between your home and vehicle. However, they operate very similarly.
STAT: The acceptable ohm range is usually labeled on the capacitor. If the capacitor tells you “50 ±5%,” the acceptable range is 47.5 to 52.5 F. (source)