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Old 01-31-2010, 11:41 PM   #1
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


My parents had a 5 ton HP system installed 3 years ago. They selected a 14 seer system.

About 6 months after it was first installed, the compressor was replaced.

FFWD to today.

My parents just received an electric bill or $1200. The month before it was $600.

I went over tonight and noticed that only the condenser fan was running, but not the actual compressor. The electric heat was energized, which was the source of heat for the house.

I didnt know a HP compressor was smart enough to know to turn on the AUX heat if the compressor didnt work.

Below are the PDF specs on the units....is it possible they were not wired up properly to cause two compressor failures over the past 2 years? Or is it possible they werent installed properly?

I've seen it posted here many times, a quality install is what makes the difference, and I wonder if that is part of the issue here.


Air Handler
Air Handler - ARUF 486016

Heat Pump
Heat Pump - 14 Seer SSZ

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Old 02-01-2010, 01:25 AM   #2
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Probably a bad install.

Good chance the compressor wasn't bad the first time. But misdiagnosed.
May or may not be bad not. could be a blown capacitor.

Check the air flow of their system. Take your utube with.

The thermostat is bringing on the aux because the temp in the house is dropping.
Depending on what thermostat they have. It won't let the temp drop a full degree before bringing on the aux heat.

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Old 02-01-2010, 09:16 AM   #3
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


That is just it. If the heat is off, and I bump the tstat 1 degree, the fan on the condenser energizes, the compressor doesnt. But there is heat coming out of the registers, 95+. An AMP meter registers about 80 amps of draw to the AH.

He is having another pro come out today to diagnose the system.

This is my parents first heat pump, and thus far, they arent happy. They spent over $3700 in electric last year, most to heating. Dad didnt say anything about it because he thought it was normal, and they did have A/C this past summer.

I did have him set the t-stat to cooling to see if the compressor would energize then, but it didn't, only the air handler did.

Also, when I pulled the breaker for the condenser...there was still buzzing in the cabinet...it sounded like the relay for the condenser or compressor was energized. It would click about every 3 minutes. (The AH inside was on and the system was calling for heat)
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:21 AM   #4
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


What brand and model thermostat.

Many will bring on the aux heat if you raise the temp 1F.

The defrost board in the outdoor unit gets its control power from the indoor unit. So the contactor will still be closed. Thats why you heard buzzing.
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:47 AM   #5
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
What brand and model thermostat.
I think it is a White Rodgers.

I am getting them a Venstar T1700...also rebranded as a Carrier.

I'll install it and adjust the deadband to be 3 degrees, as well as set the time the HP has to run before the Electric heat comes on to be 40 minutes...and adjust as needed.

I have the T1900 and love it.

http://venstar.com/Thermostats/SlimlinePlatinumR/

BTW, the installer told them he installed a 2 stage heat pump...I dont see any mention of that in the manual for the model # of the unit they have. Am I missing something here?
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:54 AM   #6
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


The GSH14 line is a single stage R22 unit.
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:57 AM   #7
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
The GSH14 line is a single stage R22 unit.
Hmmh. I used the model number listed on their invoice.

However, I recall when I took the cover plate off the condenser, I saw a big label that said R410A.

I should have looked at the actual label on the outdoor unit and not assumed the model number on the invoice was accurate.
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:58 AM   #8
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Personally. I'm not a fan of large temp differential thermostats. Nor of timing to second stage/aux heat.

I prefer the IAQ which holds temp much tighter.
But can be set up to time to second stage/aux heat if desired.

The IAQ will bring on the aux heat. When it determines that the heat pump is operating at 90% of its capacity. It provides a much better comfort for people. Then having a large temp drop before bringing on the aux heat.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:01 AM   #9
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


I have a question for you "beenthere", see my post this am "flow switch use in hydronic heating". When you get a chance after your other replies to hvac questions, see what you think about my post. Thanks!
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:13 AM   #10
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The SSZ is a 14 SEER R410A single stage heat pump.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:20 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
Personally. I'm not a fan of large temp differential thermostats. Nor of timing to second stage/aux heat.

I prefer the IAQ which holds temp much tighter.
But can be set up to time to second stage/aux heat if desired.

The IAQ will bring on the aux heat. When it determines that the heat pump is operating at 90% of its capacity. It provides a much better comfort for people. Then having a large temp drop before bringing on the aux heat.
Yes, but the house is an old house...80+ years and is not tight, so the temperature wont hold within 1 degree for vary long.

We grew up with wood heat, and are all used to extreme hot/cold swings...so for my parents, a 3 +/- swing is acceptable.

Basically, we dont want the AUX heat to come on unless absolutely needed, and I want to ensure that it doesnt accidentally come on any sooner than X minutes.

I dont know what IAQ means.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:30 AM   #12
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IAQ is the name of one of Honeywell's thermostats(YTH9421 is the number).

You should also help to seal the house. Some caulk (ok, maybe a case) will do a lot of good toward helping to keep their heating and cooling bill down. And has a return on investment in the first year.
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Old 02-01-2010, 12:18 PM   #13
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
IAQ is the name of one of Honeywell's thermostats(YTH9421 is the number).

You should also help to seal the house. Some caulk (ok, maybe a case) will do a lot of good toward helping to keep their heating and cooling bill down. And has a return on investment in the first year.
Oh, I agree. The house needs some sealing up...part of it was built in 1919...

The repair guy came out, said their filter area is too small....I didnt even think to check it, it is dark down there. It is a 25x20 now. He says it should be at least a 25x30. I told dad he could probably go to a 25x20x 4 or 5 a lot easier than changing out the filter rack.

They identified an issue and are waiting on confirmation from the manufacture.

The unit goes into lockout mode after a few minutes of operation. There is a sudden change of pressure just prior to this happening.

There is not an outdoor tstat.
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Old 02-01-2010, 12:31 PM   #14
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Sounds like a TXV closing down, or dirt traveling in the system restricting refrigerant flow.
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Old 02-01-2010, 06:41 PM   #15
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HP - Compressor Failure 2x


Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewF View Post
I think it is a White Rodgers.

I am getting them a Venstar T1700...also rebranded as a Carrier.

I'll install it and adjust the deadband to be 3 degrees, as well as set the time the HP has to run before the Electric heat comes on to be 40 minutes...and adjust as needed.

I have the T1900 and love it.

http://venstar.com/Thermostats/SlimlinePlatinumR/

BTW, the installer told them he installed a 2 stage heat pump...I dont see any mention of that in the manual for the model # of the unit they have. Am I missing something here?
I don't have a heat pump, but the T1900's averaging of a remote location looks really awesome! I have a single HVAC unit (AC+gas furnace) for 2 stories and the thermostat is downstairs while the master bedroom is upstairs. This results in uncomfortable temperature swings sometimes, both in the winter and summer. Averaging would work a lot better for me.

What would really be the cat's meow would be to have it run off of a different control unit at different times of the day! :D

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