A contactor is an electrical device that you can use to switch an electrical circuit on and off. Contactors have three components- the contacts, electromagnet, and enclosure. A circuit usually controls them with a lower power output than the switched circuit.
Contactors are an integral part of air conditioners. If your contractor goes terrible, your air conditioner won’t cool properly, and you may end up having hot and cold spots throughout your home.
How to Tell if You Have a Bad AC Contactor?
Air conditioners with faulty contactors cannot go through cycles (short-cycling) to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature. Here are some common bad AC contactor symptoms.
- Your system does not turn on at all.
- You hear a buzzing noise whenever you turn on your system.
- Your system makes a loud, clicking noise.
- Your system turns on but does not turn off quickly.
If you notice one or more of these signs, reach out to an experienced AC contractor in Wilmington, DE, as soon as possible.
Testing an AC Contactor
If your system makes a humming or chattering noise, test your contractor to see if it is the source of the problem. Follow these steps to test your contactor.
- Turn off the power to your AC: Your safety comes first. To prevent electrical hazards, shut down your unit at the thermostat and breaker level.
- Remove the side cover: Remove the side cover of the condenser. You will see multiple-colored wires connected to a black rectangle positioned vertically. That is your AC’s contactor.
- Take pictures: Take pictures of the contactor and corresponding wires from different angles, so you will know how to reconnect them.
- Remove the contactor and wires: Unscrew the contactor. Once you have removed the contactor, proceed to remove the wires.
- Test the contractor: To test your AC contactor, first set your multimeter to the OL setting and then connect it to the low volt terminals. If the reading is between 5 and 20 volts, your contactor is working correctly. If you get a lower reading or no reading at all, your contactor is faulty and needs a replacement.
Why Should You Not Try to Replace a Faulty AC Contactor Yourself?
If you try to replace a faulty AC contactor yourself, you could end up injuring yourself or void the warranty. If you commit a mistake, things may get from bad to worse, and you could end up spending a ton on expensive repairs.
Frayed wires or a tripped circuit could cause your contactor to fail. Your air conditioning repair expert will get to the root cause of the problem and eliminate it.
Are you looking for an air conditioning repair expert in Wilmington, DE? D&T Heating and Cooling is a top-rated AC contractor in Wilmington, DE. We will treat the root cause of your AC problem, not just the symptoms. To schedule an inspection, call (302) 838-6905.