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  #1  
Old 07-30-2011, 10:38 PM
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Air conditioning question

The AC went out today so I checked everything out, and when I checked the breaker, it wouldn't turn on or off, it sorta wobbled. Is the breaker bad?
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Old 07-30-2011, 10:41 PM
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Sounds like it it's broken... it should turn on and off.

Ever changed one? It's not hard, just use an insulated screwdriver

-J
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  #3  
Old 07-30-2011, 10:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by compu_85 View Post
Sounds like it it's broken... it should turn on and off.

Ever changed one? It's not hard, just use an insulated screwdriver

-J
When I tried to reset it, I saw a spark. I have changed breaker before. Also the breaker is 21 years old.
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  #4  
Old 07-30-2011, 10:55 PM
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Unplug the A/C and try to reset the breaker.
Flip off the the main breaker if you are going to replace a circuit breaker, no need for an insulated screwdriver.
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  #5  
Old 07-30-2011, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chas H View Post
Unplug the A/C and try to reset the breaker.
Flip off the the main breaker if you are going to replace a circuit breaker, no need for an insulated screwdriver.
I will try that tomorrow, thanks guys. Also I looked all over the panel and can't find out what brand the breaker is.
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  #6  
Old 07-30-2011, 11:14 PM
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if your box is in the garage. Wait for it to be cool outside, changing out the breakers Sucks when it's humid, worry about sweating on the buzzbar and getting a good zap from it
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Aquaticedge View Post
if your box is in the garage. Wait for it to be cool outside, changing out the breakers Sucks when it's humid, worry about sweating on the buzzbar and getting a good zap from it
Good advice, thanks man.
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  #8  
Old 07-30-2011, 11:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Clk Man View Post
When I tried to reset it, I saw a spark. I have changed breaker before. Also the breaker is 21 years old.
Remove the 2 wires(assuming it is a 240 volt unit) from the breaker and see if it resets. If it does than the problem is in the wiring or your AC unit. If it doesn't than it is the breaker. The fact that you saw a spark and the breaker won't reset almost certainly indicates it is not the breaker being defective. Unfortunately, in 25 years of electrical troubleshooting, it is rarely just a bad breaker as that would make it way too easy to fix! If you can post a picture I can tell you what brand of breakers you have and if they are one of the few that have a history of failure- Zinsco, Bulldog, FPE, etc. If you are not well versed in electrical just shut off the main breaker before you work on anything to be on the safe side. Is this a central AC system or a plug in window unit?
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Old 07-31-2011, 12:02 AM
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Originally Posted by 10fords View Post
Remove the 2 wires(assuming it is a 240 volt unit) from the breaker and see if it resets. If it does than the problem is in the wiring or your AC unit. If it doesn't than it is the breaker. The fact that you saw a spark and the breaker won't reset almost certainly indicates it is not the breaker being defective. Unfortunately, in 25 years of electrical troubleshooting, it is rarely just a bad breaker as that would make it way too easy to fix! If you can post a picture I can tell you what brand of breakers you have and if they are one of the few that have a history of failure- Zinsco, Bulldog, FPE, etc. If you are not well versed in electrical just shut off the main breaker before you work on anything to be on the safe side. Is this a central AC system or a plug in window unit?
It's a central air system with the outside unit.
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  #10  
Old 07-31-2011, 12:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Clk Man View Post
It's a central air system with the outside unit.
Than there should be a disconnect at the outside condensor. It will either be a fused or pullout type. Either throw the handle to off, or remove the pullout, and try resetting the breaker. If it resets then the problem is in the condensor, or the wiring from the disconnect to the condensor. If it doesn't then the problem is in the wiring between the disconnect and the breaker(assuming you have already ruled out the breaker). It's just a matter of isolating where the problem is.
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  #11  
Old 07-31-2011, 02:10 PM
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I turned off the outside connect and the breaker still won't reset. I am going to replace the breaker today, I will let you guys know what happens.
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  #12  
Old 07-31-2011, 02:58 PM
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Dont have a Shocking Experience. It's a terrible way to get a Charge out of life and a way to make you feel really zapped afterwards.
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  #13  
Old 07-31-2011, 03:24 PM
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That A/C unit must be sucking some juice to destroy your breaker.
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  #14  
Old 07-31-2011, 04:33 PM
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There be air conditioning Boys. The breaker was the problem. The old breaker was brittle and melted. It was an 80 amp. All I could find at Lowes was a 60 amp. The old unit was a heat pump and the new unit is just straight cooling unit. Do you guys think that the 60 amp will be ok?
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  #15  
Old 07-31-2011, 04:36 PM
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There should be a plate on the side of the AC unit saying how much juice it draws. Is there a fuse on the box by the unit outside?

If the 60A doesn't trip when the unit starts up when it's hot, I'd think you're golden.

-J
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