If I can manage the appropriate voltage and microfarad, then size, shape, brand, other basic factors are unimportant. 

So, yes! Air conditioner capacitors are universal. 

The air conditioner capacitor is a temporary storage device for electricity. That means it is an electronic component inside the unit, and it is used to store charge in an electrostatic field. To run the air conditioner steadily, capacitors are a necessary tool.

are air conditioner capacitors universal

What Does An Air Conditioner Capacitor Do?

To understand the situation, say, an air conditioner capacitor and a battery are the same functions, but their way of working is different. At first, the capacitor starts to absorb and store electrical energy that can be used to start up the fan motors. This process helps the fan to keep running continuously.  

Capacitors are installed to maintain a constant charge to the motors. This way, the air conditioner can run for an extended period reliably. So, it can work with most of the efficiency it has. 

The air conditioner capacitor starts the different air conditioner motors. It helps keep them going by setting up a store of electricity that can give continuous power. This part acts as a kind of temporary battery so that there is a constant force of power to keep the system running easily and smoothly. 

Are Air Conditioner Capacitors Universal? 

A capacitor is a device composed of two metal operators separated by separating material. Not all the capacitors are the same. An air conditioner contains several different capacitors. 

According to the working method, there are different types of capacitors. Such as – 

1. The Compressor Motor Run capacitor : 

This is a common fact that most capacitors fail is the compressor motor run capacitor. Some single-phase Air Conditioner electric motors bear a “run capacitor” to activate the alternate phase winding ( supplementary coil) to produce a rotating magnetic field while the motor is running. 

Run capacitors are designed for continuous duty while the motor is powered. That is why electrolytic capacitors are avoided, and low loss polymer capacitors are used. Run capacitors are contained with polypropylene film capacitors (historically metallized paper capacitors), and they are loaded the entire time the motor is running. 

The range of run capacitors is rated in 1.5 to 100 µF and with the voltage classifications of 250, 370 and 440 V.

2. The Start Capacitor :

Firstly, start capacitors increase motor starting torque and allow a motor to quickly be cycled on and out. This type of capacitor stays in the circuit long enough to quickly bring the motor up to a predetermined speed, which is generally about 75 % of the full speed and is also taken out of the circuit, frequently by a centrifugal switch that releases at that speed. In this time, the motor works more efficiently with a start capacitor. 

The range of start capacitors rated above 70 µF, with four major voltage classifications: 125 V, 165 V, 250 V, and 330 V. Non-polarized aluminium electrolytic capacitors are always above 20 µF with non-solid electrolyte. So, these types of capacitors are only applicable for the short motor starting time.

3. The Inner Fan Motor Run Capacitor :

This capacitor usually works inside the fan. It helps to keep the fan running without any disturbance. Also, any damage is caused to the inner fan, and the capacitor stops working. 

4. The Outside Fan Motor Run Capacitor : 

This capacitor helps the whole air conditioner system from the outside by cooling the circumstances. It is working from the outside. It also keeps the outer system protected so it can work easily.

Are Air Conditioner Capacitors Interchangeable? 

Air Conditioner capacitors are not interchangeable. Every capacitor is made to work for different purposes. So, if one capacitor tends to replacement with another one, it would cause nothing but damage.

For example, start capacitors and run capacitors have so many differences that they are not interchangeable. When I try to use a start capacitor instead of a run capacitor, it will short out in the air condition system. It also can likely lead to the fan motor or compressor malfunctioning.

If one capacitor losses its working ability, it needs to replace with a new capacitor of the same kind. Different capacitors do not match one another, so there will be no outcome if they are interchanged. So, it would be great to replace them with the right kinds of capacitors.

Why Good Capacitors Go Bad?  

Capacitors fail every day. They do a tough job, and, unfortunately, their work takes a risk. Many factors play heavily into the lifetime of the capacitors, however. These include some of the facts that are given below –

Heat exposure :

In Phoenix, maybe one of the most dangerous rudiments for air conditioner capacitors is the heat. Unfortunately, exposing these units to high heat for extended ages greatly shortens their lives and can beget significant damage to your unit. One needs to make sure when shading an air conditioner. 

Keeping it clean and the air circulating helps to maximize a capacitor’s lifetime. 

Voltage standing :

All capacitors have a voltage standing, which informs technicians of exactly which capacitor matches which air conditioner. Unfortunately, homeowners may try to cut costs by choosing to replace their capacitors themselves without understanding how to choose the right capacitor. A small capacitor won’t hurt your air conditioner, but it will significantly dock the capacitor’s life.

However, remember that bigger is better. If an air conditioner is a 370-volt unit, hitting up to a 400-volt capacitor will ensure you get enough power. Also, that capacitor comes closer to reaching its maximum life span, If one decides to do this job. 

Age :

Like all effects, capacitors have a limited life span. Utmost are designed to last roughly 20 times, but several factors can beget them to wear out further quickly. However, a capacitor is small (as mentioned above) or erected from a problematic corridor. The estimated life span may be greatly reduced If your air conditioner cycles much more fleetly than average. 

Fortunately, these corridors are fairly affordable to have replaced. So indeed, if a capacitor wears out before the air conditioner does, it won’t break the bank. 

Still, running with little enthusiasm, making weird noises or just is not cooling right, If your air conditioner is refusing to start, it is better to replace your capacitors with the right one.

How Do I Know If My Air Conditioner Capacitors Is Bad?

Some symptoms defer that an air conditioner capacitors go bad –

Firstly, the air conditioner will stop blowing cold air. This is the first reason to go an Air Conditioner capacitor bad. Immediately need to repair this.

High and rising energy bills will be shown continuously. It is another reason things are going not well with the capacitor. 

Humming noise and effect is another major reason. The Air Conditioner need to repair as soon as possible if this occurs. It can cause damages to the other part too.

An old HVAir Conditioner system can have a bad effect on the capacitor. So, the new system will be the ultimate right decision.

If an Air Conditioner turns off and turns on without any reason, then it is sure that there are some problems with the capacitor. Replacing is needed of the capacitors quickly. 

If Air Conditioner does not turn on immediately, then there is something wrong with the capacitor. If it does not work, capacitors need to be repaired, or a new one needs to be plugged in here.

How Do I Know Which Capacitors To Buy?

There are some useful tips one can follow while buying new capacitors for an air conditioner –

1. Working Voltage – 

At first, the things need to ensure that the capacitor has enough working voltage and that the normal voltage doesn’t exceed 60% of the working voltage. This amount of limit will ensure better reliability. This way, it will make sure that the capacitor is not overworked.

If the working voltage works excessively, several kinds of damage can happen at any time. So, it needs to check out first if the voltage is perfect for capacitors. Otherwise, it can cause danger.

2. Dielectric Type – 

Another essential tip before buying capacitors is to check the dielectric type: the dielectric conditions size, package, frequency range and other electrical properties. Different types of ceramic have different properties, and their performance levels are different too because the type of material affects the function of the capacitor. 

Aluminium electrolytic capacitors are extremely effective when leakage is not an issue. Electrolytics are a very necessary tool for coupling, decoupling and smoothing. So, it is an important tool to check before buying capacitors. 

3. Package – 

The right package is an important matter while choosing capacitors. It should be determined by how the capacitor will be assembled, Whether composed of standard leaded components or surface-mount types. As it requires lower inductance levels, surface mount components are useful for RF equipment. 

4. Ripple Current – 

This is necessary to consider the ripple current. Before purchasing capacitors for applications, I need to make sure that it uses high current or not. Also, timing is a priority in this case.

5. Tolerance –

The Tolerance of capacitors depends on different types of capacitors. Electrolytic capacitors can generally be 80/-20, whereas other types can be ± one, and others can have other situations of Tolerance. It is necessary to precisely consider what Tolerance is needed for the circuit to operate satisfactorily. 

It is worth taking a look at the capacitors for which reasons they are to be used. They can be placed into many broad orders that will enable the choice to be made. So, it is important to look out for options like this.

How Do I Know What Size Air Conditioner Capacitors I Need?

When my air conditioner was not working duly, I found out that my capacitors were damaged. So, I decided to replace them with the new one. However, I needed to make sure that I got the right capacitor size. 

I need to be sure about making this decision else the result will be an error. If I choose one that is too big or small, the capacitor will burn out and spray the liquid inside of it on the other components of the air conditioner. The good news is, some ways help to know the right capacitor size for the compressor.

First, consult the owner’s manual for my air conditioner to see if it lists the capacitor size it requires. When it does not work, then I also call the manufacturer and ask what size it requires.

Secondly, multiply the full load amps by 2,650 and divide this number by the supply voltage. The full cargo amps and the load voltage can be found in the owner’s manual. The performing number is the MicroFarad of the capacitor that is needed.

Generally, an MFD means it is a unit of electrical capacitance, and this will be written on the capacitor or its packaging. If the size is available, one can round up or down 10 per cent to match the number to a capacitor. However, this is an exact figure, just a general estimate.

At last, multiply the working power of the motor (it should be listed in kilowatts in the owner’s manual) by the power factor in table 1 included in the Resource below. This will give the exact size of the capacitor that is demanded.

How Much Does It Cost To Replace New Air Conditioner Capacitors?

Cost is a major consideration for utmost operations. It’s necessary to secure high-quality factors for minimal cost. As a result, it is worth looking around for the optimum deals. Some supplier assessments are doubtful to be applicable for numerous hobbyhorse operations, and numerous low-cost options are ideal.

A capacitor for a residential-sized unit should be cheap, and it is always better to keep a second one for backup. 

Also, it will be a good decision to take help from mechanics. It is quite risky to do the replacement of the capacitors on my own.

Conclusion :

Air conditioner capacitors are universal. Because of their capacitors, air conditioners do a little magic trick every time they startup. An Air Conditioner unit requires a great deal more startup energy than is available through a home’s wiring, so the capacitor is added to the circuit to give an electrical jumpstart at the same moment that the air conditioner is drawing power from the electrical grid. 

Together, these two electrical sources give the right quantum of juice to an air conditioner. The capacitor’s job is over until an air exertion cycle is complete. Also, the compressor must start up again. I hope you got your answer to “Are air conditioner capacitors universal?”.

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