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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    17

    Wires to capacitor melted. What is the most likely cause?

    I have a Bryant Coastal unit that had a cap replaced under a year ago. The unit failed again. I was told that the cap was o.k. but that the wires to it had melted and thus the cap had to be replaced. They theorized that it may have been due to a surge.

    The electrical service has a Leviton whole house surge protector that is showing green. I'm wondering if the cap insertion spades were not crimped tightly and it arced or whether it is due to a bad Chinese capacitor.

    What probably caused this? Should I upgrade to an Amrad capacitor to prevent further issues?

    Thanks,
    Dave

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    SouthEast NC ICW & Piedmont Foothills
    Posts
    7,635
    Heat

    just what generated that heat is nothing more than a guess without actually being there when it occurred

    pos capacitor

    loose connection

    high amps

    rodent burning a fatty
    It`s better to be silent and thought the fool; than speak and remove all doubt.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Richland Hills, Texas
    Posts
    14,915
    Probably a less than perfect electrical connection.
    If more government is the answer, then it's a really stupid question.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    1,120
    Or cause the tech changed the caps and didn't bother to replace the rubber top to protect it from arching to of items. Or they left it sitting on the bottom and it wiggled around and arch off and on to other items.

    Or your amping higher then the copper wires are rated to handle.

    I'm guessing it wasn't secured like it should be.
    If you're too "open" minded, your brains will fall out.
    Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    17
    The one before this didn't have a rubber cap. I haven't opened up the access panel to look at this one. How should it be secured?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    1,120
    secured so that it cannot wobble and move usually with a metal band and a couple of screws
    If you're too "open" minded, your brains will fall out.
    Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    17
    Can I use a pipe strap or is this a speciality item?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    1,120
    I would make the tech who installed it come back and finish it tell him to bring a rubber cap for it as well
    If you're too "open" minded, your brains will fall out.
    Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    6,327
    I have found over the last few years the quality of spade connectors has become very bad. They are very weak and become loose over time and after being removed. I but higher quality terminal connectors and replace them when I replace capcitors.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Southeastern Pa
    Posts
    19,573
    Rubber caps are NOT a requirement. They were commonly used on older equipment, and some manufacturers have continued to use them. The lack of a rubber cap is NOT your causal factor.

    Cheap Chinese made caps fail and build up heat. A female spade terminal that does not exert sufficient pressure while gripping the male spade terminal can also build up heat. A LOT of heat. When a wire's insulation is damaged, THAT is you heat source.

    Have your tech repair the wiring (as in "not you") and you can have him install an Amrad cap, if you like. It is a good quality, American made part.
    [Avatar photo from a Florida training accident. Everyone walked away.]
    2 Tim 3:16-17

    RSES CMS, HVAC Electrical Specialist

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  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    4,905
    I have been finding melted wires on run caps that are recent replacement and it due to loose wire connections ,tech in to big of a hurry to do it right ,and not secuing a capacitor is hack crap work ad techs that dont secure caps need to be called out on it

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    17
    I just pulled off the cover. The tech had replaced the wires and he used a heavy gauge. The unit has a built in holder for the cap but the cap was
    just sitting on the bottom ledge.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    cincinnati, ohio
    Posts
    258
    I've seen this a lot and it's usually a corroded terminal on compressor not holding wire terminal on anymore.
    Knowledge comes with experience

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