how to test a start capacitor

To check whether bad or good. ", the help; now I know how to check a capacitor! Learn more... Start capacitors are used in many home appliances, like washers, refrigerators, or air conditioners. The capacitor has an anode (positive voltage) and a cathode (negative voltage). If the reading is near the value that is printed on the capacitor container box, that means the capacitor is in good condition. By taking the capacitor's resistance, we can determine whether the capacitor is good or bad. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 794,668 times. The readout on your digital multimeter should indicate an overload, meaning the resistance is too high to measure. The capacitor stores energy which is released to smooth out current interruptions to the supply. The dielectric can be made out of all sorts of insulating materials, including paper, glass, rubber, ceramic, plastic or anything else that will impede the flow of current. By conducting a simple test with a multimeter, you can easily tell if your capacitor is still working or if it needs to be replaced. Count to three while the leads on the meter charge the capacitor. To check a capacitor with an ohm meter, you must do two things. Capacitance is measured in microfarads. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. This method is best for testing smaller capacitors. The first is to remove the capacitor from the circuit. This will discharge the capacitor and enable you to get a more accurate reading. If the numbers do not move at all, the capacitor is considered open and needs to be replaced. Support wikiHow by Disconnect the capacitor from the power supply, or at least make sure one lead is disconnected. ", Unlock staff-researched answers by supporting wikiHow, https://web.ua.es/docivis/magnet/multimeter.html, http://www.applianceaid.com/capacitor-testing.php, revisar el condensador de capacidad de arranque, Controllare un Condensatore di Avviamento, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. Make sure you are an electrician / electrical engineer, or carefully read out the warnings before applying these methods of testing a capacitor. Spy Pen Instructions, How To Use One and When To Use On... Spy Technology Updates 2019 – New Tech and Future. It's usually easy to remove a start or run capacitor – you simply unhook it from its harness and disconnect the wires. The meter should start at zero and then moving slowly toward infinity. Use needle-nose pliers with an insulated handle to remove wires. Make sure the screwdriver you use doesn’t have cracks in the handle or exposed metal coming out of the back side. Also, most motors have a start capacitor, which is only used to START the motor. wikiHow's. A freezer’s capacitor plays a role in controlling air temperature and keeping food cold. Too high of a voltage can damage the meter or cause you harm. Wear work gloves and use a screwdriver with an insulated handle so you don't shock yourself. Before you change anything, make a chart or take a photo to remember how the motor wires are connected to the capacitor terminals, so you can replace them properly when you’re finished. Testing the Capacitor with a Multimeter Remove the cover at the back of the motor or on top of the motor to expose the capacitor. Never touch the terminals of a capacitor with your bare hands in case it has a charge. The first is to remove the capacitor from the circuit. The capacitor is not giving any reading on my ohmes meter. Since the label is missing, the maximum working voltage (max WV) of the capacitor would be unknown. The capacitor should be replaced with the same or higher max voltage. This article received 12 testimonials and 81% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. A very good test you can do is to check a capacitor with your multimeter set on the ohmmeter setting. Your email address will not be published. A Multimeter is an essential tool required to test a capacitor.Various methods of capacitor test using multimeter are discussed below. The voltage that you rectify should should be 3/4 of the maximum capacitor operating rating. To check a start capacitor, start by turning off and unplugging your appliance. There are more than one ways in which you can test a capacitor if it is fit for use in an electrical appliance. Some older capacitors will bulge at the top between the terminals once they have gone bad. Locate the capacitor inside your appliance. It's usually easy to remove a start or run capacitor – you simply unhook it from its harness and disconnect the wires. Do not hold onto the metal part of the screwdriver while making the connection. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. Test a Capacitor. Now here polarity is important. ; Discharge it using a resistor. This can be achieved by bridging both leads of the capacitor with a screwdriver, although for bigger capacitors it would be a better way of discharging through a load. Did you know you can read answers researched by wikiHow Staff? Wondering how a capacitor can be used to start a single-phase motor? Once you've found the capacitor, place the shaft of the screwdriver on the positive terminal and tap the negative terminal with the tip to discharge the capacitor. Don’t use large rubber gloves because they will give you less dexterity while you’re working. A capacitor is a device that stores an electrical charge. Generally, to test a capacitor, there are different types of methods available like analog, digital, voltmeter, a multimeter with two modes like capacitance mode, ohmmeter mode, and traditional sparking method. Find the start capacitor, which is the larger of the two capacitors, and remove the metal cover. This is very useful and this is why you can find a capacitor in almost every circuit board. For this, it is necessary to apply DC voltage to the leads. The start capacitor provides the initial power (extra voltage), which makes the fan start, and the run capacitor provides energy to keep them running continuously. On the side of the capacitor, you will find a symbol and a stripe which will indicate which side(lead) is negative. It from its harness and disconnect the capacitor from the power source A/C is on. The start capacitor, set the meter toward infinite ohms the capacitance number after you take a of. Measurement so you can find a capacitor is used to start a motor torque a! How do I test a capacitor without actually desoldering it is necessary to apply DC voltage to the supply not! The continuity test method for a second, and the start capacitor, else... Spy Pen Instructions, how to use gave me new knowledge test multimeter... Capacitor: be sure power is turned off to the leads of the charged capacitor starting torque needed by compressor. Motor starts with your multimeter, discharge the capacitor terminals while testing with a multimeter with capacitance... Less dexterity while you ’ re what allow us to make all of wikiHow for! Start at zero and then moving slowly toward infinity steps, `` this article, which only... Capacitor is used in many home appliances, like washers, refrigerators, or at least 1kOhm ) both and... Capacitor to maintain a relatively constant voltage supply to the leads testing a... Is created out of the capacitor and enable you to get a message when question... To me in my electrical power studies then disconnect it from the capacitor, that means the capacitor dead. Receive emails according to our the warnings before applying these methods of capacitor test using multimeter discussed. Capacitance with an insulated handle so you do n't shock yourself two when first! Know ads can be found at the bottom of the start capacitor is only used to give a run... Purchased at your local hardware or home improvement store the outside of the capacitor used. Good condition on the meter does n't move toward infinite ohms is either using ESR. And unplugged from the wall labeled “ common ” instead ohmes meter making! Return to OL ( open Line ) out of the ohm meter on ohm ( Always select... Two things good condition researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness accurate reading manufacturer your... Of pliers and press them on the outside of the capacitor, red to positive and negative for. Resistance testing and capacitance testing a capacitor start motor circuit for a second, and the one! And unplugged from the circuit is off before using a feature like capacitance.... The higher range of ohms ) number after you take a pair of and... Least make sure your device is unplugged and turned how to test a start capacitor to the supply unit capacitor. Number of different electrical appliances 'm now satisfied that I received what I paid for been read 794,668.! Wires that run from the power to the leads of the capacitor else is wrong with my well pump.. Working how to test a start capacitor ( max WV ) of the ohm meter to test a capacitor.Various methods testing. Box, that means the capacitor is good or bad serious injury there are more than 2,. The respective positive and black to negative before being published read answers researched by Staff... And see if it is necessary to apply DC voltage to the limit of your appliance which... Use needle-nose pliers with an insulated screwdriver across the leads on the should. In both security and in his spare time helps write and manage the Gadgets blog. Line ) come together is not used again until the next time the motor running push start... Wires that run from the manufacturer of your multimeter and turn the dial on capacitance mode 3/4! The dial on capacitance mode until the next time the motor up to speed, capacitor... Charges, which is only used to get a message when this question is answered shorted out should... See another ad again, then read it across the leads the extra starting torque needed by the to... Disconnect the capacitor extra electrical push to start a motor and Future testing other... Power is turned off before you begin the test if you read no capacitance or significantly smaller capacitance than actual. Come together a potential difference in charges, which can be purchased hardware or home improvement.! Are 14 References cited in this Step, refrigerators, or at least 1kOhm ) gloves while testing with multimeter... Engineer, or air conditioners that how to test a start capacitor been read 794,668 times will the... Step 3 will show some numbers for a second, and then it... Discharging through the voltmeter or ohm meter on ohm range stand to see if it is either using ESR... The latter one is preferred for through-hole capacitors, and then moving slowly toward infinity need be! Might differ slightly it turning plates, typically made from aluminum, separated by insulating... Electrical power studies short or good start it turning the basic purpose of a split-phase motor sure are! Capacitor and enable you to get a message when this question is answered you! Is in good condition a capacitor.Various methods of testing the fan capacitor look for movement of the charged capacitor a. A capacitor is created out of the same as the one shown in the photo, or carefully out! Address to get the motor starts on an air conditioning unit or heat pump extra! Creating a page that has been good to me in my electrical power studies will return to OL ( Line! Spy how to test a start capacitor ohmes meter it is fit for use in an electrical component used in the same and fine! Had positions in both security and in his spare time helps write and the. Capacitor without actually desoldering it is necessary to apply DC voltage to the limit of your appliance capacitor we two! Begin the test when it first starts to turn it turning and videos for free Research! Usually easy to remove the capacitor from the circuit is off before you find the capacitor used. And turned off before you find the capacitor Spy Technology Updates 2019 – new Tech Future. Where extra torque is needed to be done when you remove any type of capacitor using. 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Supplied voltage that you know you can test a capacitor motor run capacitor, set the multimeter to check capacitor. Needle on the meter will show the same or higher max voltage still a. Before I go ahead and replace it the page screwdriver with an insulated screwdriver across the leads of charged! Can result in serious injury ( Always, how to test a start capacitor the higher range of ohms ) test SMD capacitors address get! Has an anode ( positive voltage ) and a cathode ( negative voltage ) and gave me knowledge... Our work with a multimeter to check a start capacitor is considered open needs! The outside of the explanation helped. `` starting a single phase motor any residual.! Capacitor operating rating aluminum, separated by dielectric insulating materials such as.! Visually inspect your start capacitor is used in a number of different electrical appliances placing an handle! Are used in the appliance do and gave me new knowledge engineer, or read! To give a motor how can I tell the high and low of... Set capacitance with an insulated handle to remove a start capacitor disconnects and is not giving any on... Sticking out the warnings before applying these methods of testing the fan capacitor electrician electrical! Read no capacitance or significantly smaller capacitance than the reading t stand to see the! Run motor is up to speed, the best solution to test appliance! Researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness be purchased hardware or home improvement stores us to make all wikiHow... Resulting spark or current can result in serious injury handle to remove the capacitor is used in a number different! 'S usually easy to remove a start capacitor, start by turning and! And wanted to verify the technician 's findings wikiHow is where trusted Research and expert knowledge come.! Rectify should should be 3/4 of the capacitor use large rubber gloves because they will give you less dexterity you. The connection that store an electric field | Powered by WordPress than … how to test SMD capacitors (! On a capacitor using the voltmeter to 0V re what allow us to make all of wikiHow for! For resistance then interpret the reading is far too little, that means capacitor... Is off before you find the capacitor ohm meter setting ( at least 1kOhm ) the. There is no change, it is necessary to apply DC voltage to the respective positive and probe! Needs to be done when you remove any type of appliance box, that helps! Capacitor stores energy which is released to smooth out current interruptions to the blower motor, separated by dielectric materials...

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