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Do it Yourself A/C Repair

If I were to rate the most frustrating part of my life for this year (2012), it would be our Air conditioning unit in our home. I’ve had a crash course in do it yourself a/c repair since we owned the home from clogged drain lines to a defective door squat switch (here’s more information about my plan to fix all that).

The latest thing I’ve been chasing is an electrical connection problem. Often, I would get up in the morning and Janna would tell me that the a/c doesn’t work. I found out after several trips to the attic that if I moved a certain wire bundle inside the A/C unit it would turn on.

At first the a/c would turn on and stay on for several weeks. Each time I did this though I found the cycle would get shorter; it would work for a week, then a few days, then only a few minutes. I found myself at a point where I needed to fix this permanently. I don’t really like to hire people to do things until I’ve exhausted my knowledge about it.


Luckily, after doing some snooping around I saw something that didn’t look right. Turns out it was a broken solder joint on the fan control circuit board. I had to buy a soldering iron to fix it. Soldering is definitely an art to some degree; it’s a lot like welding and requires a steady hand, which I don’t have. It seemed like the circuit board was a moving target; it took a little getting used to.

You can see the crack in the solder a little better in this picture than in the video.

It may not look the prettiest but it’ll work.


It took me a while to re-solder the terminal and make it look presentable to the viewing public. : ) In the end I ended up saving $65, not bad.

The next thing on my to do list is to straighten the fins on the a/c compressor (I got consultaion from Brisbane AC installation expert few hours ago, so am now ready), this should save us some money during the summer months because it will increase efficiency. Too bad I’m waiting to do this at the end of summer. : ( Have you ever fixed an a/c problem yourself? Or were lucky enough to get an HVAC service quote on time? Please tell us about it in the comments section below.



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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Derek Frei September 11, 2012, 3:34 pm

    This is way cool! Soldering is tricky, but looks like you got it down better than I have so far. Nice flashlight too.

    • Jesse September 11, 2012, 4:58 pm

      Thanks Derek! I think it’s a stretch saying I have soldering down yet. I only let you see what I wanted you to see. : ) Janna already wants me to fix a piece of jewelry now so we’ll see how that goes. I got the flashlight last christmas and use it for everything, the tripod feature it extra handy.

  • Ruth September 11, 2012, 9:32 pm

    Watch out! You are following the path of my super-handy hubby. He may be semi-retired now, but you wouldn’t know it. He works his flights and in-between those, he is at someone ELSE’s house doing handy work.
    With that said, I am very grateful that he has been so talented/gifted in this area and that he doesn’t mind sharing those skills with others.
    If you ever get stuck, give him a call. He rarely can’t find a solution.

    • Jesse September 11, 2012, 9:45 pm

      I got that impression the first time we met. I will definitely give him a call when I get stuck, I only have a basic understanding of air conditioners, only enough to be dangerous. 🙂 I mostly call for help when I get into more complicated high risk electrical stuff. Thanks for the compliment and offer.

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