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Old 07-22-2017, 03:32 PM   #1
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A/C Hard Start Kits

Do the hard start kits help in any way? Looking at youtube most test show that is does not lighten the amp load on compressor start up. Any ideas????
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Old 07-22-2017, 04:01 PM   #2
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Didn't work for me. Your mileage may vary though..
I was trying to start a 12K mermaid with a 2000 watt generator..

Seems the Mermaid (25 years old)already had some form of start capacitor in it's electrical box..

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Old 07-22-2017, 06:15 PM   #3
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Some years ago, Dometic sponsored a fairly technical review of their SmartStart, which is sophisticated, but rather expensive- in the several hundred dollar range and compared it to a cheap Supco capacitor, which costs less than $20.

The Supco capacitor cut starting current about 25%. The Dometic kit reduced it about 50%. I am almost positive that that the Dometic kit will let a Honda 2000 start most A/Cs. But I would try the Supco capacitor first. It might work.

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Old 07-22-2017, 06:27 PM   #4
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Put the Supco capacitors on my AC units. 2 units run off the same leg of my 8 KW generator. Without the capacitors, the second compressor starting would often trip the generator 40 amp breaker. With the capacitors, no issues even with other loads online. At $15, I would certainly start with them.

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Old 07-22-2017, 10:43 PM   #5
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Was in a/c trade for years. It will help start a unit to point. Will boost voltage on start up and help with low voltage problems. Kicks the cap,if it's weak, up so it will start the unit. Have one on both of my units and have had no problems with either. Would suggest that it be installed on all your A/C's and enjoy.
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Old 07-22-2017, 11:55 PM   #6
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Are all the start kits basically the same are is one brand better than the rest.
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Old 07-23-2017, 07:33 AM   #7
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I have been looking at MICRO-AIR Easy Start 364 . .Reports that I have read mention there are no problems starting a AC with a Honda 2000. " EasyStart™ is a one-of-a-kind, custom-developed soft starter for single-phase motors. It can support both 115 and 230VAC motors. It employs a 4-part start ramp sequence that is self-optimizing, resulting in the lowest possible start-up current. EasyStart can deliver up to 75% start current reduction as compared to a compressor's LRA (locked-rotor amperage). It also has numerous specialized fault checks not found in any other soft starter to provide further protection for your compressor. EasyStart is the perfect solution that allows an air conditioner or refrigeration compressor to operate on a generator, inverter, or limited utility power when it would otherwise not have functioned. It can also be applied to air compressor and fluid pump motors." Have any members installed these ? If so how difficult for a electrically challenged person as myself. All opinion appreciated. David
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:00 AM   #8
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David, the Easy Start instructions look pretty simple, and the unit does have troubleshooting lights to help.

Hard to justify $300 over a less than $20 capacitor with a good reputation that does 90 percent of the job.
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:21 AM   #9
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psneeld, Thanks for the response. I have no knowledge of capacitors and thought this EasY Start was more than a capacitor since it required start your AC 4-5 time without a generator so the Easy Start learn your system. If I only need a capacitor to use the Honda 2000 great. Thanks
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:26 AM   #10
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That I can't promise.... as Ted posted it helped him but others have noted that it does depend.....
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Old 07-23-2017, 11:43 AM   #11
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Many years ago I wanted to run my little 5000 BTU air conditioner on a Honda 2000. It wouldn't start. I added a Supco hard start capacitor and it would start and run fine on a Honda 1000.

The thing to look at is the LRA (Locked Rotor Amps). You can find this on the label on the compressor. This number is the amps needed to get a stopped compressor moving. You only need it for a very small fraction of a second which is why a quick shot of power from a capacitor will help get it moving.

As I recall, my 5000 BTU needed a little over 3000 watts to start. It only needed about 600 watts to run. The capacitor gave me the extra power needed to get it moving.

I recently talked to a marine refrigeration expert about this. I mentioned that it seemed easier to get newer air conditioners started. He said that the rotary compressors common today have a lower LRA and are therefore easier to start.

Kartracer, the capacitors are less than twenty bucks, I think it's worth a try if the difference between your generator output and your LRA isn't more than about 2000 watts.
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Old 07-23-2017, 12:57 PM   #12
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THese things are common in the RV world as MANY people want those A/C units but are out in the desert or other places where there is no power other than the 2KW Honda.

Give it a shot. Just don't get shot. If the A/c has been running recently be carefyll as the old capacitor can hold a charge for quite a while and it may be enough to light up your life. Check across the terminals with the DMM set on high volts before you start working.

Some systems will bleed the cap over a period of time when not running but just be sure

Those warning should be included in a proper kit BUT if you just go buy a suitable capacitor the warnings may not be included.
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Old 07-24-2017, 12:17 PM   #13
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Thanks All
I bought a Supco from Walmart $12
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