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Question DetailsAsked on 10/24/2017

How much does a start assist cost for a York ac unit

I have an older York ac unit, the compressor is not turning on. The compressor motor and compositor seem to be fine. A technician suspects it could be the start assist in the unit and said the part would cost $450
, but could not guarantee that would fix the problem.

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1 Answer


Compositor ??? I presume you mean the starting capacitor.

Sounds to me like you need a new technician - both because he should be able to TEST for power/continuity/capacitance/relay action to determine if it is a failed hard start unit or not. Also because in my book $450 for a hard-start unit (and that assumes the entire relay and capacitor needs replacing, not just the usually failed $10-25 capacitor) is a rip-off. The unit is typically $50-100 retail range for the kit and takes about 15-20 minutes to install and test - so should not be more than about $250-300 at most, commonly more like $150-200 installed.

In addition to testing, simple disconnection of the hard start unit and bypassing it direct to the starting capacitor would start the unit (albeit a slower start, and should not be done with unit "hot" - meaning recently run, so it is under full operating output pressure) - identifying whether it is the starting components or the compressor itself which is the problem in the first place. This is the sort of thing where he should be able to DEFINITIVELY say if it is the thermostat or protection device, starting capacitor, hard starting kit, starting relay, broken wiring or connector, etc - then once all those are ruled out by testing, it leaves it to the compressor being jammed or the comporessor motor having failed - both of which cases would mean a new compressor, which for an older unit would normally mean a totally new system - WITHOUT spending a lot on part swhich "might" or might not solve the problem.

BTW - if you do get forced into the repair/replace decision mode, there are a fair number of previous questions with answers about replacing/repairing A/C units, the econimic issues, warranty and efficiency advantages and rough value of those versus keeping an older unit, and other factors in the decision, which can be found in the Home > HVAC link, under Browse Projects, at lower left.

Answered 2 years ago by LCD

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