How to fix portable A/C unit


Old 08-17-16, 07:24 AM
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How to fix portable A/C unit

So I found an IDYLIS portable air conditioner (#416710) on the sidewalk a couple days ago (there's a lot of move-out "garbage" on the streets of Boston these days). I've been on the market for a new unit for my apartment and this unit looked clean and relatively new so I took it.

I plugged it in and it seemed to work fine for about a minute. Then I realized why it was on the sidewalk:

When turned on, the compressor runs for about 30-60 seconds before shuttering to a stop (the fans still run continuously). After another 30 seconds, the compressor kicks back on. While the compressor is running, cold air is coming out of the unit and generally runs long enough to bring the room temperature down by one degree; however, soon thereafter the compressor shuts down and room-temperature air comes out. This cycle continues no matter how long I run the unit. The net effect is a near zero-degree difference in room temp.

Just to rule-out any obvious problems:
-The unit is plugged-in properly and turned to the correct setting
-The temperature is set to the coldest setting (68-degrees F)
-The unit is accurately sensing the ambient temperature in the room (usually about 80-degrees F).
-The unit is properly vented out of a nearby window and the rest of the windows in the room are sealed.
-The water reservoir is completely empty and I have a continuous drainage hose hooked into the back.

I took the cover panels off of the unit and didn't see any obvious problems. Both the condenser and the evaporator coils are clean (and I dusted them off for good measure). I didn't find any leaks or traces of oil. No apparent damage at all.

I read that this could be due to low Freon but I'm not exactly sure how that is possible with a completely sealed unit. But if that's the case, how do I test the Freon level? Could it be a control board issue?

Thanks for your help!
Old 08-17-16, 10:19 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

That's a Danby company product.

A single hose A/C is not terribly effective in cooling as it pulls inside cool air outside while discharging the hot air.

The refrigeration system is sealed. There is no direct way of checking the charge. It is a very common problem for the system to develop a leak but the compressor normally doesn't cycle.

There is some type of sensor sitting directly in front of the evaporator coil. The evap coil is the one in front that you see when you remove the front cover. Make sure that sensor is not touching the coil. That could cause short cycling.
Old 08-18-16, 05:13 AM
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A common reason for a compressor to "shutter" to a stop is for there to be a problem that causes the compressor overload to open.
This would indicate that the compressor has a problem or the overload is bad.

To check this you would need to see if there is still power at the compressor at the time it stops.

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