hvac condenser fan

What is a Condenser Fan?

The Condenser Fan is located on the top side of most AC units (see picture below).

Its job is to draw air through the AC condenser coils in order to remove heat the refrigerant picked up from inside of your home. In this guide, you will learn about Condenser Fan motors, the cost to replace them, and the differences between a Blower Fan motor and a Condenser motor. (Picture to the top fan on the outdoor unit.)

Condenser Fan AC

What are some differences between a Condenser Fan motor and Blower Fan motor?

A Blower Fan motor is located inside your furnace or air handler. The Air Conditioner Condenser Fan motor is located in the outside AC unit.
The Blower Motor fan is used to circulate air through the vents inside your home. The Condenser Motor is used to turn the big fan blades on the top side of most AC units in order to cool the refrigerant. The blower fan looks much more like a big hamster wheel than a typical fan. An AC fan looks more like a traditional in home fan with typical blades to circulate the air.

What’s a typical Condenser Fan motor replacement cost?

If your HVAC Condenser Fan motor is burnt out, a Condenser Fan motor repair will run between $325-$575.

Why such a big range? There are different sizes of fan motor depending on the tonnage of your air conditioner. Higher tonnage units often have bigger, more expensive motors increasing replacement costs. Markets with higher labor rates will also have an affect on the total cost of replacing a condenser fan motor.

Why is my AC Condenser Fan not working?

  • Tripped Breaker
  • Jammed by Debris
  • Capacitor
  • Fan Motor Burn Out
  • Contactor

Tripped Breaker-Electrical storms can cause breakers to trip as can an overload on the circuit. It is always a good idea to check for the simplest solution first so checking the breaker’s a good place to start.

Jammed by Debris-If your unit sits below a heavily wooded area, another easy fix to consider is whether a small branch or some other debris fell through the AC fan opening and is jamming your unit.

Capacitor-A capacitor stores energy in order to power the AC condenser’s fan. It is best to get the capacitor replaced by an HVAC professional since it stores energy and can be dangerous.

Contactor-A contactor is an electrical switch responsible for controlling the condenser fan motor. Over time these items will go bad. This is another component better left to replacement by a licensed contractor.

What does it mean if my Fan Motor is Burnt Out?

The AC condenser fan motor will burn out or stop working if they get overloaded and overworked. The best way to prevent your fan motor from prematurely warring out is to properly maintain your air conditioner. (See AC Condenser maintenance link for more details).