blue and red swoop graphic

Why Is Your AC Contactor Not Pulling In

By Aztil –

AC contactor problems are a common occurrence. But the headache they cause is major. When the contactor malfunctions, the AC does not work as it should. In summers, facing such a problem is both irritating and frustrating. If you want your AC to be in top working order, you should start getting its periodic maintenance done. Most issues can be caught during maintenance itself and do not evolve into something bigger. However, there may be exceptions. You have all possible troubleshooting and just realized that your AC contactor is not pulling in. The problem is identified, but why did it happen? Have you ever wondered if it could have been prevented? 

Work Of Contactor In Air Conditioner

The contactor on the air conditioning unit is a switch that permits or stops power supply to the unit. It is a relay switch which directs electricity to the compressor of the air conditioner. When power is not needed, the contactor pulls the electrical contacts apart. It closes the contacts when something needs to be powered.

AC Contactor wont Pulling In – What Does It Mean?

Pulling in refers to the contactor closing the electrical contacts to power the air conditioner’s compressor . When the contactor does not “pull-in”, it means that the connections do not close to power the compressor. As a result, the AC works, but in the absence of a working compressor, it does not cool the home.

Why Is Your HVAC Contactor Not Pulling In?

AC contactor not pulling in is not a major issue. It can be taken care of without much botheration. Surprisingly, it is something that can be avoided through periodic maintenance. Usually, the contactor malfunctions due to corroded contacts, coil failure, and contactor burnout.

1. Corroded Contacts – The contact points in an AC contactor are susceptible to corrosion because of moisture present in the air. Also, if not cleaned regularly they tend to get covered with dust and other particle matter which gets sucked in with air. This makes the points of contact dirty due to which they do not work as they should leading to contactor failure. 

Solution – The answer to this problem is “Contact Cleaner”. A little dab of contact cleaner will get rid of all that which is accumulated on the contact points. A very small amount of cleaner is required due to the small size of the contacts. Once cleaned, the contactor will start pulling in as needed. 

2. Coil Failure – In addition to the contact points, a contactor also has coils. Sometimes these coils fail altogether. At such times, the contactor develops a fault, and it may reflect in the form of failure to pull in.

Solution – Again, the solution is not complicated. You can solve the problem by simply replacing the old contactor with a new one. Although it is possible to just replace the said coils, it is not a preferred method. This is because not only reaching the coils is hard, but so is finding the right size to replace them. Moreover, you can buy a new contactor relatively cheap, and its cost of replacement would also be low. As against this, replacing the coil is an intricate task, and so, its cost of replacement will nullify any financial benefit you foresee.

3. Contactor Burnout – When the voltage influx to the contactor is more than its load carrying capacity, it gets fried. Usually, during high voltage, the circuit breaker should trip. When that does not happen, the contactor suffers complete burnout. Even loose cables can cause a short circuit which could lead to the same result. 

Solution – The solution to this problem is also contactor replacement. Although the process is simple, because of the sensitive nature of its function, the job is best completed by a trained HVAC technician.

Important Thing To Remember

Your AC contactor will have its important details like the type, model, and voltage either printed on the body or have a sticker with the same information. When you buy a new contactor, it is necessary to match all these details and replace it with an exact replica. Brand differences are acceptable; what is not acceptable is the voltage difference. Replacing with an undersized contactor will put your AC unit under strain. As a result, the AC will either develop some significant problem or the contactor will keep getting fried.

Also, remember whenever you are working with electrical equipment, it is necessary to first switch off the power supply to it. This step is necessary to ensure that you do not get an electrical shock by mistake. To avoid such scenarios, we always recommend using the services of trained personnel. They know of all the possibilities and take due care to ensure their own safety as well as that of your equipment.

If You Can’t Find Exact Replacement Of Contactor

Our recommendation is to always replace a contactor, with the same make and model as that of the original one. Although it is possible that you don’t find an exact match. If that happens, be sure to buy one with terminals that are similar to the one you took out. Most importantly, make sure that the voltage rating is exactly the same as well as its load capacity or amperage.

Conclusion

Your AC contactor is a small switch like device which has a very important job to perform. During the course of annual maintenance, you should ask the HVAC technician to take a look at it as well. If need be, ask them to clean its contacts to increase its productive life. If your AC is not giving cool air, ask the technician to check the contactor for any faults. Though the issue may not be with the contactor, it is necessary to rule it out as a possibility. If you are still not convinced, you can always ask for a second opinion. 

Frequently Asked Questions

The reasons your AC contactor is not pulling in are:

  1. Dirty or corroded contacts.
  2. Failure of contactor coils.
  3. The contactor is burnt.

Connection and mountings mistakes, selection of the wrong cable, voltage drops, current surge, age, and use-related wear and tear of the component are some of the common causes of contactor failure.

The term pulling-in refers to the contactor closing the electrical circuit (contacts) to power the AC compressor. When the contactor fails to “pull in,” it means the contactor’s connections are either not closing at all or not closing enough to power the compressor.

A new contactor may not pull in if its coil is damaged or burnt. Replacing the coil will take care of the situation. If the coil is fine, the other likely possibility is that the wiring in the control circuit is not proper, in which case, the problem will persist until the wiring is rectified.

Some probable reasons for the contactor with 24V not pulling in are:

  1. A malfunctioning thermostat or a thermostat that is not set on the cooling mode.
  2. There exists open or shorted thermostat wiring which goes to the thermostat from the contactor or transformer.
  3. Weak, worn-out, or shorted transformer, that is unable to handle the coil load.

Request Service

What Our Clients Think Of Us


Aztil Air Conditioning
Excellent
4.5
Based on 974 reviews
review us on
Dana was great. He arrived as promised, fixed the problem and was polite and professional!
A very professional group of people !
Ricardo was here this morning to svc my ac and did an outstanding job. I believe he went above and beyond my expectations. Ask for Ricardo, you won't be disappointed.
Ricardo was awesome
Ricardo did a super great job today beyond everyone else, He explained the whole process to me taking pictures of every step and was very polite. I am totally impressed and very happy to have Aztil as my company to service my ac.
Had an emergency today. My in-laws brand new 2-ton air conditioner stopped cooling today after just one week of use.Called Aztil and technician Rick arrived within two hours. He correctly diagnosed the problem and had the unit quickly working again. Beyond that, he was so kind and considerate to my elderly in-laws, while explaining the work he performed. I wish all service people had the same professionalism that Rick has. Once again, Aztil and Rick get 5 Stars. Highly recommended.
Response from the owner: Hello Les. Thank you for your positive feedback. I'm glad your leak was resolved. We appreciate your business and support.
Dana was here promptly and fixed my AC thank you for sending him he was amazing!!
Dana checked my units very efficiently
Dana was great Got us up and running explained what’s going on with our unit Very happy with Dana & Aztil Dana is a great asset to Aztil Don’t lose him Thank you
Dana was very pleasant and easy to work with. Nice that he was the same tech who came out last time so he was aware of me and my situation.😉
Dana is way beyond fabulous. He is knowledgeable, kind and extremely competent I am so thrilled with Aztil’s service
Wow!!! Ricardo did an awesome job cleaning my AC vents and dryer vent line. He was extremely clean and thorough. Be sure to ask for him as your technician. He really deserves acknowledgement for his hard work. Very happy!
Ricardo was very efficient and friendly good employee.
Great service Dana
Dana was here and did a great job
Dana Dussault is awesome.After 4 hellish days without A/C, he came to our rescue. My family and I thank you for your swiftness and professionalism.God bless you
Ricardo was very efficient and showed me exactly what he was doing. Very satisfied with the service!
Ricardo Campos was excellent when he came to my apartment today! He took his time and was very thorough. He went above and beyond any service man I’ve had!Next time I will request him personally!! Thank you, Ricardo!!
Dana was excellent , we seen him before, always happy with his work .
Easy. Expert and helpful. Dana. Good guy .💪.Ita 2024 and this time Ricardo came to do my service. He took pix of every service he performed. He was efficient and braved the heavy storms to get the job done. Really good guy
Response from the owner: Hi Valerie Pinhas,Thank you for your feedback! We're glad to hear that your experience with Dana was easy, expert, and helpful. We strive to provide top-notch service and it sounds like Dana did just that. We appreciate your kind words and we look forward to assisting you again in the future. 💪
Thank you for sending Ricardo to service The Rosado AC unit at 230 Andover I. I recommend Ricardo because he did a thorough job; keeping me informed during the time of his investigation and was polite and professional from start to finish.
Dana & Alex did a fast & clean job of replacing my drain line for my air conditioning.
Dana and Alex arrived for a service call today to solve an ongoing duct issue. They successfully removed a booster fan in the master bedroom duct! Dana and Alex are true professionals. Today they settled an ongoing issue I’ve had for over 2 months. I hope to see them again during any maintenance. Thank you!
We recently received AC maintenance from Ricardo Campos. He was very professional and cordial. He was prompt and got to work as soon as he got here. He explained what he was doing as he went along. He did an excellent job. We are very happy with Aztil we highly recommend it!
Ricardo came and did my yearly tune-up on my ac, I was very pleased and highly recommend ;
Dana found out the problem and took care of it quickly!
I highly recommend Ricardo at Aztil Air Conditioning. He is very professional and knowledgeable. He takes the time to explain why things need to be done and will inform you of alternatives and consequences if applicable. He is customer oriented and represent his company extremely well.
Dana was amazing. He cleaned and added a UV light to my a/c system. He is extremely polite and professional. I hope Aztil realizes what a great technician he is and an asset to the company. If I ever need help again, I want Dana to come.
I have been under contract with this AC company since 2013. They have kept me going since. Just got my usual 6 month tune-up, and my technician, Ricardo was excellent and very helpful, and answered all my questions. Highly recommend.
Response from the owner: Hi Bret, We're glad to hear that the technicians were courteous of your belongings and that Patty was helpful in scheduling the service. We take pride in our customer service and we appreciate your feedback. Thank you for choosing us for your duct cleaning needs.
Dana did a great job and was very professional! He was quick to diagnosis what was wrong and corrected the issue.
Dana provided fast professional service and I highly recommend him and Aztil.
Dana did a phenomenal job. Showed up on time, took care of some repair work, and had the A/C back up and running in no time. He also made it a point to keep me informed throughout the whole process and answered any question I had. Friendly and professional service! Thank you!
Very fast and efficent.Friendly and respectful.The only negative thing I could say is that they're much more expensive than anyone else.
Response from the owner: Hi Dennis, thank you for taking the time to leave a positive review. We are so glad that you had a positive experience with us!
I was having issues with my AC and was given an appointment immediately. Technician Dana was very professional, answered my questions and fixed the problem quickly. Very thankful that Aztil is able to provide great service and knowledgeable technicians.
Dana was professional and efficient. Tough to find these days! Thank you, Dana for your hard work!
Dana was on time and very polite. He quickly determined the issue and knew just what to do. The problem was corrected quickly. He answered my questions and explained the shut off safety feature on my AC unit so I would understand the codes. I would gladly have him back as a service provider.
Another great experience with Aztil. Technician Paul was outstanding. He identified the problem with our AC unit and got us back to a functioning AC system. I highly recommend Aztil for AC service.Our service included installing a new coil. Yohan and Pedro were terrific. They both were efficient and professional.Aztil completed the service on our AC unit today by doing a duct sealing. Cody and Kenny were both outstanding! I will continue to use and recommend Aztil!
Dana was absolutely professional and did his job quickly and efficiently AI would recommend him highly Judy and Frank Pisani
Dana is a Service PRO - knowledgable in all issues HVAC! Hire him with confidence knowing he will be thorough and successful in your air conditioning repairs! Google needs more stars for Dana!
Dana came and fixed my ac in 5 mins on a Sunday. Thank you!
Dana was promo and efficient. Five stars !
Dana was pronto didn’t even have to wait!!!! Took care of business and cooling off🥰😎😊😉
Dana,Dana arrived on time and we received excellent service from him. Would like Dana any time I need any service.
Dana is the best. He took his time and found out what the impossible problem with my air conditioner was.he gets 15 stars from me
js_loader

Our Partners


  • Carrier logo
  • Honywell logo
  • Mitsubishi Elctric logo
  • York logo
  • American Standard logo
  • Amana logo
  • Trane logo
  • Rheem logo
  • Ruud logo
  • Daikin logo