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Rheem Heat Pump


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How to Change Your Condenser Fan Motor on 
a Rheem Heat Pump or Air Conditioning Unit
Complaint: Motor Hums - Compressor Will Start...

All Repairs to Your HVAC System Should be Performed by a Professional Technician to 
Avoid Injury or the Risk of Electrocution...

Working Model: RPKA 035JAZ Rheem Heat Pump...

Temperature today in Arkansas was 93 degrees with high humidity. When I flipped the switch on my thermostat, the inside AC blower fan turned on, but there was no cold air coming from the vents. I decided to go outside to see if the condensing unit was working - and found a humming condenser fan motor. The first thing I did was to spin the fan with a long stick while the motor was in the "run" position. The motor did not run, so I purchased a new start/run capacitor. To my surprise - when I hit the main power, the unit started up. I reinstalled the cover and snickered at all the money I saved. About one hour later, the fan motor started slowing down and finally started humming again. Of course, I knew exactly what the problem was: a defective condenser fan motor.

Here's how I fixed this problem...

1. Turn off the indoor thermostat
2. Turn off the main 240 volts to the condenser 
Comment: This should be done at the outside breaker box or remove the quick disconnect plug - if provided by the manufacturer.
3. Remove the 4 screws, holding the back cover to the condenser
4. Discharge the capacitor by shorting between all terminals with the blade of a screwdriver.
5. Remove the "brown" wire and the "orange" wire from the capacitor. Take a picture with your phone or label the wires with tape to ensure they are installed in their correct position. The capacitor terminals are labeled "Com," "Fan," and "Hep (Heat Pump or Compressor)"

    6. Remove the bolts holding the fan grill cover and remove the fan motor and wires.
    7. When ordering the motor, use a part vendor that specializes in Rheem HVAC parts. Get the serial number and model number of the unit. 

    Comment: When I received the replacement motor, it came with 5 wires rather than three wires on the original motor. Don't panic! Use the wiring diagram with the new motor to hook everything up. Make sure the capacitor match your motor. Use the video below to help you...


    8. Before reinstalling the cover, turn on the power (240 volts) and use a screwdriver with insulated handle to press down the bar and make contact with the breaker points. The bar is located between L1 and T1.

    Turn off all power to the condenser, prior to making repairs...!
    The power should be shut-down at the breaker box outside near the condenser.
    Do not attempt to service the seal system or the electrical system without
    proper training - you may be electrocuted!

    9. If the condenser fan runs when the starter bar is pressed, everything was hooked up OK. Comment: Finally, check the rotation of the fan motor facing the air discharge side of the grill. For the Model RPKA 035JAZ, fan blade rotation is counter-clockwise. With this reversible motor, you may use a jumper between the "yellow" and "purple" wires for clockwise rotation, and "yellow" and "brown" wires for counter-clockwise rotation.
    Rheem 3 Wire to 5 Wire Condenser Fan Motor Hookup CW Rotation Air Discharge

    Rheem 3 Wire to 5 Wire Condenser Fan Motor Hookup CCW Rotation Air Discharge
    10. Reinstall the heat pump cover and you're done!

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Rheem Heat Pump Low Side Air Conditioning Line Freezing-up - Part II




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