Question about Hitachi EC89 4 Gallon Twin Stack Air Compressor

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Trips thermal overload. power source ok. oil ok

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Several things to check. Amp draw to be within number on plate, if amp draw not correct check capacitor, should be within 5% of rating on cap.. If amp draw about right and cap reads good suspect faulty breaker. If amp draw high and cap. good check for leak at in-tank check valve. With pressure in tank remove hose at check valve spray soapy water. If check valve good, suspect reed valves leaking. If reeds are leaking the compressor will take longer than normal to fill and the discharge tube/air will get very hot. It is recommended to note the amount of time it takes to fill tank when unit is new and compare this as unit wears. Length of time to fill is an indication of how well unit is working. A combination of leaky valves and leaking fittings as well as leaking checkvalve will cause motor to overheat.

Posted on Oct 04, 2010

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  • Freddie Johnson Apr 22, 2011

    The early Hitachi EC89's came with a 40 microfarad capacitor to start the motor. This is insufficient when its cold, or the compressor hasn't been used in a while, or the compressor is still in its break-in period. Hitachi later changed it to a 60 microfarad capacitor, as it now is with the currently offered EC89's, which provides reliable and consistent starts of the electric motor. FYI: the capacitor is the white tube looking thing just under the black cover on the top side of the compressor. You can just see it without disassembling anything if you peek under the black cover to the best of your ability. To get at it you need to remove the black plastic cover. To do that, it takes about 20 minutes of disassembly time and a few tools: unplug the compressor, disconnect at least one end of the copper pressure tube (the tube that runs from the pump to the tank), remove the four main bolts that hold the black steel compressor base to the main frame, now you can get at the four phillips head screws that hold the plastic cover on, loosen (but don't remove) these four phillips head screws, then pop off the plastic cover (there are anti-vibration side locks that need to be disengaged- by using a long flat head screwdriver from the inside- to pry them and pop them off from the inside). Once the black cover is loose, you will either have to reach in and disconnect the two wires to the breaker, or unthread the breaker's little hex nut and separate it from the black cover. Replacing the 40 microfarad capacitor with a 60 microfarad capacitor (available at your local electric motor rebuilder- yellow pages) will resolve the problem of the weak starting motor that pops the breaker before the motor gets a chance to start rotating. Shame on Hitachi for not publishing this fix themselves.

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Same thing happened to my EC89....Unit would come on fine for 10-15 seconds then the reset button would trip! motor compressed air fine and all else worked great. But I Would have to stop working, walk back over to the compressor and reset the protection overload button on the compressor. It got "VERY ANNOYING" to say the least!! I ended up bypassing the reset button (I took the two wires off the back of the reset button and put them together) Unit worked great after that! so I ordered a new reset button for $8.00 and re installed it once it came in...WORKS GREAT NOW....I did not want to just eliminate the reset button permanently because if there was ever another issue with the compressor ( low oil, bad piston ring,low amp draw, etc.) it would burn up the motor vrs tripping the thermal protection button.....I do not suggest running it full time without the thermal protection button....but only to test for a bad reset button! hopes this helps someone with the same "reset button trip" issue.....

Posted on Nov 24, 2012

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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MOTOR THERMAL OVERLOAD
PROTECTOR: The electric motor
has a manual thermal overload
protector. If the motor overheats
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to the “off” position and wait for
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