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Air Conditioner Selection, Issue #014 -- Oops, Compressor Stuck!
February 23, 2007

23 February 2007

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Table of contents

  1. Content Highlight on Air Conditioner Selection - Filter Dryer, and Receiver

  2. Your tenth tip. Tip #0010: Oops, Compressor Stuck!

1. Content Highlight on Air Conditioner Selection - Filter Dryer, and Receiver

You don't see these in hermetically sealed air conditioners, especially window units.


As, hermetically sealed air conditioners will be installed in a controlled environment.

Hence, the likelihood of moisture, and foreign material ingress is very, very small.

BUT, these are very important for ACs installed at site - like central, split, and automotive ACs.

What's the function again?

Oh yes.

The filter (normally of woven cloth) will mechanically filter particles.

The dryer, made of adsorbent or absorbent material - will remove moisture from the system.

The receiver is an integrated design with the filter dryer, and synonymous to auto AC's.

Function of this receiver is to provide full liquid column to expansion valve, such that you'll get satisfactory cooling.

Why we don't see receiver in residential ACs? Because the tubing is arranged such that, the expansion valve will get full liquid column for expansion.

We don't have that space luxury, within a car's engine compartment - and hence the justified need for a receiver.

Enjoy the full page!

2. Your tenth tip. Tip #0010: Oops, Compressor Stuck!

You must have heard about hard-start-kit (often comes in different commercial names), promoted by a lot of AC contractors.

They will give you this solution, in case if you say,

"Umm, my compressor gives this humming noise, as if it wants to start, but can't"

Well, that is a common symptom of a stuck compressor.

There are main reasons for this:

  1. Stuck components due to aging, or long period of not being used (winter?)

  2. Damaged capacitor and/or contactor

The latter cause can be checked through inspection of the capacitor and contactor.

Look for signs of oil, and burnt contacts respectively. Remedy? Replace.

Oh, I missed out again. Please tell a qualified and certified electrician to do this.

Now, for the first cause of compressor stuck.

You can't do much about very old compressors. Bearings will eventually fail, and cause it to stuck.

BUT, you can do a few things to prolong the compressor life:

  1. Make sure that the compressor is installed, and maintained properly.

    No moisture, enough lubrication, and charging - to name a few.

    The complete list is provided here

  2. Try not to keep the unit idle for very long (months, or weeks).

    Run it for 10 to 15 minutes every week to keep it in good condition.


    You can install an AC, with heat pump (if you're still on decision making stage) - so that you can run the unit almost every day

All the best!

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All the best and we'll meet again in the next issue!


MJK Nurul Amin,
"Be comfortable"
Chief Editor,

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