Overload Valve in Compressor


  #1  
Old 05-10-14, 10:01 AM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Overload Valve in Compressor

Hi, I posted some questions about changing the contactor and capacitor yesterday and got a lot of good feedback. The back story is the unit (a 1999 Trane XE 1000 @ 42000 capacity using R22) started tripping the breaker toward the end of the season last year (which I essentially ignored - I know, I know). When the thermostat called for cooling the fan would start up but not the compressor. I changed the capacitor and contactor, and had some problems with the new contactor (neither fan nor compressor would start now). I pushed the button on the contactor and when I did the fan would start but still no compressor. I switched back to the old one contactor, and the fan would start up when the thermostst called for cooling, but still no compressor (was advised the contactor is defective so it will be returned). But since I wasn't able to get the compressor to start, I called in a local very reputable contractor who took a look this morning.

I stayed with him while he examined the unit. The contactor and capacitor were correctly wired and no obvious frayed or burnt wires on the unit. He tested voltage at the L1L2 (220Vac) and the leads from the thermostat (24Vac). He looked at the compressor and saw the wires were fine and connections good. he used a booster to the capacitor and the compressor still wouldn't start. His conclusion is the overload valve inside the compressor is stuck in the open position. And while this "can" be repaired, he said the labor involved makes that fix nearly as expensive as buying a new compressor.

My problem is I have very little funds to buy a new unit. I talked with the service manager who said they could replace the compressor for about $2600 (still outside my price range). I know its possible to get financing but am not sure I would qualify.

So my thought is to buy an older compressor (same capacity and R22) that runs and have an HVAC contractor replace the compressor I have now with a used one. I think I can source a used one that will fit (same capacity and R22) and is in working condition, but I know there are certain things I need to know, and I'm hoping somebody can advise me from here:

1. How good or bad an idea is this (I really just need something to get through the summer)?
2. Aside from capacity and refrigerant, are there any other variables I need to check to be sure a used compressor would work with my system?
3. If I call a contractor, would they be willing to install the used unit into my system (if not, why not)?
4. What would you estimate it would cost (assuming I have the used compressor at my house ready to be installed and the contractor gives me no warranty)? I know the old refrigerant will need to be recaptured and the whole system filled with new R22.

Any help, suggestions advice is very much appreciated. Thanks.
 
  #2  
Old 05-10-14, 10:15 AM
Houston204's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 7,576
Received 52 Likes on 47 Posts
It is unlikely that you will find someone to install a used compressor that you got from someone else.

If the guy spends hours installing this thing and installs a new filter/drier, a couple of copper fittings, pipe insulation, pressure tests, pulls a vacuum and adds refrigerant but the new old unit fails to start, there may be a question of payment.

You might find someone to install a used unit that they provide.
 
  #3  
Old 05-10-14, 10:30 AM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I'd be willing to make payment up front and would have no expectation of a warranty from them
 
  #4  
Old 05-10-14, 11:09 AM
user 10's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: NA
Posts: 2,148
Received 50 Likes on 44 Posts
I'm pretty sure contractors can still buy new R22 compressors.

If the compressor is bad, there are only two options worth considering:

1. New Replacement compressor. By compressor, I mean the actual compressor, not the entire condensing unit. $2600 is excessive - for that kind of money you should be able to get a new low end condenser and coil.

2. New Matching R410a condenser, evaporator, and lineset
 
  #5  
Old 05-10-14, 11:17 AM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi Muggle, and thanks.

What should just a new R22 compressor cost (ballpark)?

My understanding is I can't use a R410a compressor or condensing unit with my old R22 evaporator, is that wrong?
 
  #6  
Old 05-10-14, 11:42 AM
E
Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: usa
Posts: 616
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I would Expect to pay 1500 for a new compressor. They do however sell r22 condensers that contain no freon which would be much better than replacing compressor by itself.

However, if you have ever had to add freon to the system then you are wasting your time and money even dealing with compressor.
 
  #7  
Old 05-10-14, 12:11 PM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Ender. Where would I look to get a new compressor, aside from the contractor?
 
  #8  
Old 05-10-14, 12:28 PM
user 10's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: NA
Posts: 2,148
Received 50 Likes on 44 Posts
Don't waste your time with a dry condenser or compressor placement, especially if there's a leak.

Best option might be to hack on an old, used 10 seer condenser (if u can find a contractor who's willing to do it) until you have the funds for a matching r410a system.
 
  #9  
Old 05-10-14, 01:05 PM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
That was my original idea, to find a used but decent condition unit that I could take the compressor and put it into my system. I can understand why a contractor would be reluctant to do this both because it cuts into their new unit business and it could create a problem for the contractor if the customer has any problems with the unit down the road.

In my case I would find the used compressor and take responsibility for any performance, so I don't see that the contractor would have any liability, and I'd be willing to pay up front.
 
  #10  
Old 05-10-14, 01:06 PM
T
Member
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kansas
Posts: 317
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Did he try to give the compressor a couple of gentle raps with a small hammer or wrench? I've brought a couple Tranes back to life because of a stuck overload.
 
  #11  
Old 05-10-14, 01:19 PM
C
Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Texas, California
Posts: 1,533
Likes: 0
Received 5 Likes on 5 Posts
Shop around. You should be able to find someone who can install a new condenser for you for about $1700-1800.
 
  #12  
Old 05-10-14, 06:08 PM
user 10's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: NA
Posts: 2,148
Received 50 Likes on 44 Posts

That was my original idea, to find a used but decent condition unit that I could take the compressor and put it into my system. I can understand why a contractor would be reluctant to do this both because it cuts into their new unit business and it could create a problem for the contractor if the customer has any problems with the unit down the road.
...changing entire condenser with same size and seer rating would be an easier job. A larger professional company wouldn't do it, but an independent guy working out of a service van might.

A new condenser would be a waste unless you're willing to do it properly -> matching evap coil/air handler required to get capacity and efficiency.
 
  #13  
Old 05-11-14, 07:14 PM
H
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 14
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi tinmantu,

The tech used a "booster" to attach to the capacitor to try and jump start the compressor but that didn't work. I'm very willing to give it a few raps with a hammer to see if that brings it back to life.

Where on the compressor should I rap it and how many times?

Thanks for the suggestion - I'll let you know how it goes
 
  #14  
Old 05-11-14, 07:44 PM
T
Member
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kansas
Posts: 317
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Anywhere around the base lower middle. We had a trane with open windings, ordered a new comp. They have nuts on the lines going in and sometimes have to rap them to break the nut loose. Replaced the comp, checked the old one on the truck just for giggles. It was fine. Boss was a little red-faced, but we left the new one in. 2 or 3 solid raps, obviously not hard enough to dent. I'd try it if the comp. isn't starting at all. Can't hurt it much more.
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: