An air conditioning system can be a bit complicated for the average homeowner, but it’s a good idea to take some time to understand some of the most important components of your system. One common part that many homeowners end up having to replace at some point or another is the capacitor.

What Does an AC Capacitor Do?

The easiest way to think about an AC capacitor is to refer to it as a battery pack. When your air conditioning system needs to start up, it requires more power than your home’s electrical system can give it. This is where your AC capacitor comes into play. It works alongside your home’s electrical system to make up for the electrical demand of the air conditioning system.

Once your air conditioning system is running, your AC capacitor works to actively collect and store energy. This allows it to store enough energy so that it’s ready to assist your electrical system the next time your air conditioning system needs to start back up again.

How Do I Replace My AC Capacitor?

An AC capacitor is located within the outdoor compressor unit of any air conditioning system. It consists of a metal cylinder that has terminals attached to the wiring for your air conditioning system. If you’re thinking of doing a DIY replacement, it’s fairly straightforward.

You want to turn off all the power to your air conditioning system. It’s important to know that the capacitor will still hold some energy, so that will need to be discharged before you start working on it. The easiest way to discharge the energy is to use a long screwdriver with an insulated handle. You’ll want to touch both the terminal ends with the screwdriver so that the energy can travel into the metal of the screwdriver and discharge.

Once all the energy is discharged, you’ll want to disconnect the wires at the terminal. Make sure that you pay attention to what wires connect to which terminal so that you can reconnect them to your new capacitor unit. Most capacitors are held in place with either screws or compression clamps. You’ll want to remove the screws or pull the capacitor out of the clamp. Next, simply reinsert the new capacitor and hook up the wiring according to the diagram that you made earlier.

Expert AC Services

Comphel Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. provides expert AC services for the Sonora, CA community. If you want to make sure your AC capacitor is installed correctly, you can trust our highly trained technicians for the job. We can also assist with all of your heating and air purification needs. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment with our technicians.

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