Monday, June 18, 2007


Replaced flux capacitor

Replaced flux capacitor
Originally uploaded by kristopherjohnson

When I returned to my apartment after work today, I found a service-request form indicating that the maintenance guy had fixed my air-conditioning system by replacing the flux capacitor.

This is curious, because the flux capacitor is the device that makes time travel possible for the DeLorean in the Back to the Future movies. I've searched the Internet, but can't find anything about applications of this technology to real-life A/C systems.

The other curious thing is that I have not requested service on my A/C recently.

I have had problems. The A/C will run for a hour or two and then stop. It would restart if I turn off the system, wait a few seconds (until I hear a "click") and then turn it back on, but then it would stop again an hour or two later. If left to itself, it will stay off indefinitely. This meant that during hot summer months, I would usually awaken at around 3:00 AM every morning sweating, and return from work every day to find my apartment at 95 degrees.

I put in some service requests the first summer after I moved in, but all they did in response was to turn it off and back on, and then say "Look, it works now." I also got a very-helpful lecture on how to use a thermostat, with special emphasis on the differences between the Heat and Cool switch positions.

In their defense, I will admit that the A/C was always working when they left. It only failed when I was trying to get some sleep.

Now, two years later, my flux capacitor has been replaced. I don't know why they suddenly decided to fix it.

The Comments section of the service form indicates that the part replaced is the "XXX Capacitor," where XXX is an unreadable word but looks like it might be "Bon" or "Ron." My best guess is that the guy intended to write "replaced bad capacitor," which makes sense. Unless it was a bad flux capacitor.

By the way, the problem with my A/C persists. Maybe I need the dilithium crystals replaced next.

[UPDATE: I called Tuesday morning to make a request that they fix my now-broken A/C. Tuesday evening, it still wasn't working. So after another warm sweaty night, I went into the office on Wednesday morning in a foul mood and made demands. Wednesday afternoon, they replaced the flux capacitor (again), a relay, the fan motor, the transformer, the A/C filter, and the thermostat. Now, it seems to be working.]

What happens when you set your thermostat to 88 degress?
The actual temperature went over 88 degrees, so that doesn't seem to be the trick.

I'd like to go back to a time when I had working A/C.
My apartment complex has the same thing on their service reports. I wonder if the software that they use to generate reports has that as an option?
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