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4/1/2015

EmergencyChillerService:ATroubleshootingGuide|CommercialHVACcontentfromContractingBusiness

thecontroltransformer.Itsalongthesepathsthatyoullfindtheopencircuit,ifthereisone.

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Chillersusuallyhavetwouniquesafeties:Oneisawaterflowswitch,whichcanbehidden
inthewaterpipingandnotbevisible,especiallyifyouhavearemotepumptanksystem.
Thesecondsafetyisafreezestatcontrol.Afreezestatisbasicallyabackupthermostat
thatensuresthesupplywatertemperaturedoesntgettoocold.Usuallyfreezestatsareset
10Flessthanthesupplywatertemperaturethecustomerwantstorun.

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6.Makeavisualinspectionofthechillerelectricalpanel,waterpiping,andpumptank
system(ifithasone).Youmaybeabletoseeobviousproblemssuchasburnedorbroken
wires,thewaterpumpnotrunning,watervalvesshutoff,andimpropersystemwater
temperature.

MattMichel

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ChiefExecutiveOfficer, TheService
Roundtable

Whatifwetreatedourcustomers
likewetreatourfriends?What
wouldwedodifferent?

7.Atthispoint,youshouldhavefoundwhichsafetytripped.Dontresetituntilyouhave
yourgaugesonthecompressorandoilpump(ifapplicable).Straptemperatureprobeson
thesuction,discharge,andliquidlines.Placeanampmeteronthehighvoltagelegofthe
compressorbeforeyoustartthesystem.Resetthesafety.Thenwatchallthepressures,
temperaturesandamperagesatthesametime.Thisisnotaneasytask,butnecessary,
especiallywithinthefirstfiveminutes.Skiptoitem#10.
8.Measuretheantifreezeconcentrationinthesystem.Ifthesystemdoesnthave
antifreeze,theninspectthewaterquality.Thebestwaytomeasureantifreezeiswitha
refractometer.Remember,ifthesystemusesethyleneorpropyleneglycol,thefreeze
pointwillbedifferentforthesamepercentages.Ifyougoonlinetothiswebaddress,you
cancheckoutacomparisontabletoseethedifferences:Goto
www.chillers.com/AntifreezeFreezepoints.htm
9.Thechillerisrunning.Great!Nowinstallgaugesandtemperatureprobesandbegintaking
readings.Atthispointyou'reaheadofthegame,butnotoutofthewoods.Youneedtofind
outwhythesystemeithertrippedasafetyorisntrunningthewaythecustomerdesires.

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5.Ifyoufindanopencondition,thenyoumustdeterminewhy.Itcouldbeanythingfromlow
pressuretoabrokencompressorcontrolmodule.

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MAR26,2015
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CommonChillerTroubleshootingProblems
Followingaresomecommonproblemsthatyoucantroubleshoot,basedonthereadings
fromyourgaugesandprobes:

BEST

A.LowpressuretripCausedbylowrefrigerant,powerassemblybrokencapillarylow
ornowaterflowcloggedwaterfilterorscreenantifreezeormudcoatingthetubesofthe
evaporatorcausingpoorefficiency.

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Coming:9Tipsto
KeepCustomers
HVACSystems
Running

B.HighpressuretripThewatercooledcondenserhaspoorornoflowwatercooled
condenserhasmineralbuildupduetopoorwaterquality(verycommon)aircooled
condenserisblockedwithdebrisorhasafannotworkingchilledwatertanktemperatureis
veryhigh(over80Fplus).
C.OilfailuretripCanbecausedbyeitherlowsuperheat,lowoil(duetoarefrigerant
leak),oroilpumpdamage.

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MAR19,2015

D.FreezestatPoorwaterflow,orthethermostatissettoolow.

PRACTICES

E.BlownfusesorstartertripsShortedoroverampedmotor,compressororwires.
Makesuretocheckforgroundsorshortsbeforeyoutryagain.

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F.SystemrunningbutnotreachingthermostatsetpointEvaporatorinternallyiced
up,antifreezebreakdowncausingpoorheatexchange,systemloadistoogreatforchillerto
handle.

RecentSupplements
HVACR/Hydronics

G.Proofoffloweitherfloworpressureswitchesinwatercircuitaresufferingfromlow
ornoflow,blockedwaterfilter,watervalveshutoff,waterpipingtoosmall,flowswitch
paddlebroken(verycommon).
http://contractingbusiness.com/commercialhvac/emergencychillerservicetroubleshootingguide

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