Atlanta, GA Air Conditioning Components: What’s a Capacitor?
June 26, 2013

At Comfort Zone, we always make a point of reminding homeowners that only a skilled, experienced professional should ever be allowed to service your air conditioning system. That being said, we also believe that it is important for homeowners to have a basic grasp of how their air conditioning system works and some of its basic components. Contact the Atlanta, GA air conditioning pros on our team today if you have any questions about the operation of your air conditioner, how it works or if you need to schedule service. One component many people have heard of, perhaps without understanding its function, is a capacitor.

In HVAC systems, there are actually 2 capacitors that each perform a very important function. A capacitor is essentially an electrical device that stores an electrical charge. In your air conditioning system, capacitors are used with both the compressor and the fan motor. A run capacitor is used in air conditioners and heat pumps, as well as furnaces, and serves to maintain a fairly constant voltage supply to the motors in the fans and compressor.

Some air conditioners and heat pumps also use a start capacitor to get up and running. This is to give the compressor extra torque when starting up, and after the compressor starts the capacitor is automatically disconnected. This a great way to ensure that your AC will always start right up when you need it most.

There are many issues that can result from a faulty capacitor. It is possible that your AC will simply not start up at all. You may hear a loud humming or whining as the fan or compressor strains to come on. It is also possible that your unit will activate but fail to provide cold air. Fortunately, capacitors are fairly inexpensive to service and replace.

To learn more about how your capacitor can affect the operation of your air conditioning system, call Comfort Zone today. We are happy to answer any questions that you may have. 

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