When you find that your compressor overheats, it is important to quickly resolve the problem. Often, a compressor has an automatic shut off function which will stop the engine as soon as the overload condition has been addressed. In other instances, a compressor’s emergency shut off switch is found. If this is the case, be sure to remove this switch and if possible, close the lid of the storage container, just in case the switch goes bad. As soon as you are able to get the key to turn the engine off, close the lid on the container and the lid should fall off, allowing the container to cool down.
Most compressors will come with an operating manual. If there is no operating manual for your compressor, then be sure to purchase one online or at your local HVAC store. This will give you an idea of what repairs you can do yourself. Also, most of these manuals contain information regarding all the maintenance and replacement needed, along with a part replacement list.
One important rule to follow when dealing with an overheated compressor is to never start the compressor without removing the transfer bar. If you can get the transfer bar removed quickly, you will reduce the amount of time the compressor will overheat. A few clicks on the lever should cause the transfer bar to come off. Then, be sure to clean up any excess dirt that may be stuck on the bar. Doing so will increase the life of the transfer bar. After the transfer bar is removed, make sure to clear any debris that may be left on the filter, and remove the filter completely, including the old filter.