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Old 04-05-2011, 12:09 AM   #1
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Tired of getting screwed...


Hey guys. I hired someone to install a 2-zone mini-split. I ended up paying $1100 for the job!! $850 for the labor and the guy said I used a full jug of r410a, although it will only hold 3.6 pounds (additional $250). I got screwed, and tired of getting screwed every time I need AC work done, whether it be in my cars or one of my rentals. The turd also only evacuated 1 line and didn't weigh in the charge. Needless to say, it don't work! I couldn't test it at the time because it was 25 degrees outside. Here is what I did. I went out and bought:

Stinger recovery machine
3cfm vacuum pump
micron gauge to measure vacuum
Yellow Jacket 4V titan manifolds
vacuum oil
charging scale
recovery tank
extra hose to go from recovery to tank
Roughly $1100 all new in box

When it gets about 70 out, I am gonna recover the 410a in the minisplit, vacuum the line, and weigh in the charge. I just want to make sure my steps are correct. This is a 2 zone LG mini split heat pump with inverter technology by the way.

As it stands, the valves are open (back seat). So... to recover and vacuum the line, I leave them open correct?

The only reason to shut them would be if I was disconnecting a lineset correct?



To recover:
Compressor is off correct?

Connect high and low side to either pair of the service valves (since the valves are open, its all 1 line correct)?

Open the lowside and service on manifold and turn on recovery machine correct?

Do I stop when my low side shows that I am pulling a vacuum?

Purge machine and lines
Close all manifold valves

To Evacuate:
Compressor is off correct?

Leave main valves open?

Only need to do 1 lineset because valves are open?

In addition to linessets, the compressor itself is being evacuated?

Pull vacuum til 500 microns are present.
Let it sit for 1 hour and make sure its not over 1000 micron. If it is, repeat step but leave an additional 30 minutes once at 500 microns. If over 1000 again, suspect a leak.

Evac is done by opening service and high side valve on manifold only correct?

Micro gauge is put on between service side and manifold correct?


To Charge:
Compressor is on correct?

If I choose to use virgin 410a, is it the same steps if I use what I recovered?

I will begin by using what is in the recovery tank correct?

I leave main valves open correct?

Have tanks on upside down to get liquid only correct? Even in recovery tank?

Open high side and service side only correct?

Weigh in exactly what I need.
Purge lines


Last edited by michaeltee; 04-05-2011 at 12:28 AM.
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Old 04-05-2011, 06:38 AM   #2
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Tired of getting screwed...


Nows the time to take that HVAC course since you have the tools now get some theory to use them.

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Old 04-05-2011, 10:16 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by COLDIRON View Post
Nows the time to take that HVAC course since you have the tools now get some theory to use them.
Funny you say that. I stayed up all night looking. Nothing but online courses. This is more of a hands on type of learning. Penn Foster has an online course for $700. The course outline looks interesting. Too bad I cant learn it by the time I need this AC. I have been studying hvac/r quite a bit for the last couple months. Techs have a lot of knowledge to say the least. I would consider getting into the field, but I cant tell you how many techs are out of work here in Indianapolis. And after seeing the quality of work that some do, I can see why. This jackass didn't even know how to hook his gauges to a 410a system. He owns a company with 3 techs. He sat there 10 minutes on his hands and knees wondering why it wouldn't screw on to the service port.

Last edited by michaeltee; 04-05-2011 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 04-05-2011, 10:45 AM   #4
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Most community colleges offer HVAC courses.
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Old 04-05-2011, 12:56 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by fabrk8r View Post
Most community colleges offer HVAC courses.

I currently am attending Houston Community College, HVAC. Four classes: Refrigeration Principles, Basics of Electricity, Recovery and EPA.

$980 for first two classes, the same for the second plus $845 in tools.

I got me a grant so freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!
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Old 04-05-2011, 02:17 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by michaeltee View Post
Funny you say that. I stayed up all night looking. Nothing but online courses. This is more of a hands on type of learning.
I think you missed the point.
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Old 04-05-2011, 02:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltee View Post
Hey guys. I hired someone to install a 2-zone mini-split. I ended up paying $1100 for the job!! $850 for the labor and the guy said I used a full jug of r410a, although it will only hold 3.6 pounds (additional $250). I got screwed, and tired of getting screwed every time I need AC work done, whether it be in my cars or one of my rentals. The turd also only evacuated 1 line and didn't weigh in the charge. Needless to say, it don't work! I couldn't test it at the time because it was 25 degrees outside. Here is what I did. I went out and bought:

Stinger recovery machine
3cfm vacuum pump
micron gauge to measure vacuum
Yellow Jacket 4V titan manifolds
vacuum oil
charging scale
recovery tank
extra hose to go from recovery to tank
Roughly $1100 all new in box

When it gets about 70 out, I am gonna recover the 410a in the minisplit, vacuum the line, and weigh in the charge. I just want to make sure my steps are correct. This is a 2 zone LG mini split heat pump with inverter technology by the way.

As it stands, the valves are open (back seat). So... to recover and vacuum the line, I leave them open correct?

The only reason to shut them would be if I was disconnecting a lineset correct?



To recover:
Compressor is off correct? yes

Connect high and low side to either pair of the service valves (since the valves are open, its all 1 line correct)?

Open the lowside and service on manifold and turn on recovery machine correct?

Do I stop when my low side shows that I am pulling a vacuum?

Purge machine and lines
Close all manifold valves

To Evacuate:
Compressor is off correct?

Leave main valves open?

Only need to do 1 lineset because valves are open?

In addition to linessets, the compressor itself is being evacuated?

Pull vacuum til 500 microns are present.
Let it sit for 1 hour and make sure its not over 1000 micron. If it is, repeat step but leave an additional 30 minutes once at 500 microns. If over 1000 again, suspect a leak.

Evac is done by opening service and high side valve on manifold only correct?

Micro gauge is put on between service side and manifold correct?


To Charge:
Compressor is on correct? NO

If I choose to use virgin 410a, is it the same steps if I use what I recovered?

I will begin by using what is in the recovery tank correct? If you think there is no problem with it. Not recommend by pros.

I leave main valves open correct?

Have tanks on upside down to get liquid only correct? Even in recovery tank?

Open high side and service side only correct?

Weigh in exactly what I need.
Purge lines

WOW you went further than I did and I installed 2 systems at my house. You never mentioned what problem you are having. Not heating, not cooling? Is this a heatpump?

If the tech put in a whole tank of 410 you have a problem. Leak or something else. Tank holds 25lbs and that would kill your system because you will get liquid in suction line.

Here is my advice get the manufactures install instruction. It will have some info you need. Get a pipe clamp thermocouple. You can't get a good temp reading without one. I've tried.

Since you are spending money. I would recommend getting an N2 tank and regulator. Between your system evac and vaccum steps. Charge the system with 3-400psi of N2. This will identify any leaks. Just pressure it up and see if it will hold the pressure for a few hours.

For 410 remember to only charge liquid. Gas seperates into different compounds a bit. Don't startup system with no 410 in it. Pressure will be too low and this may cause damage.

If you weigh in your charge you don't need to run it all all during the charge. Just weigh in proper amount and start it up.
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:07 PM   #8
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Tired of getting screwed...


I think I missed the point of starting this thread. I thought I logged on to a Do It Yourself forum. I am searching for some assistance in completing a project that I am doing myself. I have spent much time researching and have a plan to finish this project. I just want to be sure my steps are right and complete. I didn't start the thread to be referred to getting an education.

So will anyone answer my questions in the 1st post?
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:10 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by DIY_HVAC View Post
WOW you went further than I did and I installed 2 systems at my house. You never mentioned what problem you are having. Not heating, not cooling? Is this a heatpump?

If the tech put in a whole tank of 410 you have a problem. Leak or something else. Tank holds 25lbs and that would kill your system because you will get liquid in suction line.

Here is my advice get the manufactures install instruction. It will have some info you need. Get a pipe clamp thermocouple. You can't get a good temp reading without one. I've tried.

Since you are spending money. I would recommend getting an N2 tank and regulator. Between your system evac and vaccum steps. Charge the system with 3-400psi of N2. This will identify any leaks. Just pressure it up and see if it will hold the pressure for a few hours.

For 410 remember to only charge liquid. Gas seperates into different compounds a bit. Don't startup system with no 410 in it. Pressure will be too low and this may cause damage.

If you weigh in your charge you don't need to run it all all during the charge. Just weigh in proper amount and start it up.
There is no problem. I am just recovering, evacuating, and charging. Plain and simple. There is no leaks.

I just want to make sure each individual step is correct that I am performing. Are you saying that all my steps are correct except turning the compressor on while charging?

That is it... Thanks

Last edited by michaeltee; 04-05-2011 at 03:14 PM.
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:16 PM   #10
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Tired of getting screwed...


Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltee View Post
I didn't start the thread to be referred to getting an education.

So will anyone answer my questions in the 1st post?
but wouldn't that be educating you? Kind of a conundrum wouldn't you say? You don't want to be educated but to answer your questions would be educating you.
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:35 PM   #11
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I think it would be a violation of Federal law to evacuate/recover your own system without being certified to do so.

Andy.
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:46 PM   #12
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The system may be completely out of refrigerant (leak) at this time.
Why not call the guy back and tell him it is not working! Tell him to give you the rest of the refrigerant he did not use from the jug, by the way was that a 20 or 30 lb. Jug?
The mini splits usually come charged and you should only add refrigerant if you have an excessively long run of line set.
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Old 04-05-2011, 04:06 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by michaeltee View Post
There is no problem. I am just recovering, evacuating, and charging. Plain and simple. There is no leaks.

I just want to make sure each individual step is correct that I am performing. Are you saying that all my steps are correct except turning the compressor on while charging?

That is it... Thanks

Yes. Just charge to proper weight and you are done. Make sure to account for line length. Most systems are charged to account for 15' of line and you have to add extra for each foot. I'm not sure what you mean by "purge" in your steps. This is usually done with N2

If you have all this nice equipment I suggest you just charge to proper superheat and subcooling. Pretty easy to do when it is hot.

I recommend you view some youtube videos by Dr Zarcoff on AC repair.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:45 PM   #14
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Go get your EPA card before doing anything else. You could have 20+ mini splits installed for the price of the fine for not having one. Costs, about $75, include a book to study and the price of testing. The required procedures for recovery are covered in the study guide and test . I read the book twice before testing and passed universal on the first try so it's not hard but is required.

You'll also need an adaptor for your hose since standard 1/4" low loss fittings won't fit on some,believe it's 5/16th. Most of them that I've seen only come with an access port on the suction side. The small line is part of the evap circuit and not a liquid line, hence no access port. Don't reuse the 410A since you have no idea if there's moisture or air in it. Weigh in the charge. Accounting for the second evap coil and line set should be in the instructions or you'll need to call the mfr and they'll run it through a program to say exactly how much refrigerant is needed. 410A added as liquid so don't wash all the oil out of the compressor while you're charging it.

Sounds like you have a mess and probably no warranty.

BTW not holding below 500 microns could be a leak or just refrigerant or moisture boiling off. Take her down to 300 or so and make sure it stabilizes under 500.

Last edited by Marty S.; 04-05-2011 at 06:08 PM.
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Old 04-05-2011, 06:08 PM   #15
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but I cant tell you how many techs are out of work here in Indianapolis
There are not that many that I know of, times are tough but that is what is kinda great about this industry, IF you are knowledgeable and do good work then you will always be in demand due to everyone needing heating and cooling. Look up Associated Builders and Contractors of America or IVY Tech and get some education and get your EPA license.

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