Air handler fan, creating loud rumbling noise


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Old 12-26-18, 10:19 AM
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Air handler fan, creating loud rumbling noise

Hello all,

Rheem RHLL-HM3821JA air handler fan, appears to be creating a loud rumbling noise. TBH, at first, I thought it was a speed boat outside.

Minutes after I heard it, I checked unit and copper line running outside was very cold, if not frozen up. Turned off ac and turned fan on alone, but heard rumbling, again, immediately.

Visual inspection of fan, appears normal with no obstructions (thought I might find a 🦎 but nada). Filter only used for 2 weeks prior to noise and never got wet. Unit has not been used for weeks.

Appreciate your thoughts!
 

Last edited by c1351996; 12-26-18 at 10:36 AM.
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Old 12-26-18, 11:10 AM
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That air handler uses a direct drive X13 ECM (electronic motor).
This is an expensive repair proposition. How old is the system..... possibly still under warranty ?
 
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Old 12-26-18, 03:21 PM
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If it's a squirrel cage fan, a possible cause is the blade sub assembly has become detached from the hub/disc. Not sure how they are attached but I think it is friction because other means like welding. glueing, etc. would create a balancing problem. The noise you hear is the hub/disc turning at a different rotation speed than the blade sub assembly.
 
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Old 12-27-18, 06:07 AM
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Originally Posted by PJmax

That air handler uses a direct drive X13 ECM (electronic motor).
This is an expensive repair proposition. How old is the system..... possibly still under warranty ?
Originally Posted by beelzebob

If it's a squirrel cage fan, a possible cause is the blade sub assembly has become detached from the hub/disc. Not sure how they are attached but I think it is friction because other means like welding. glueing, etc. would create a balancing problem. The noise you hear is the hub/disc turning at a different rotation speed than the blade sub assembly.
Thanks!

No, not under warranty.

Yes, squirrel cage fan. It appears to be attached by screw, at hub, which feels tight to hand.

Hmm?
 
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Last edited by c1351996; 12-27-18 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 12-27-18, 11:02 AM
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Try grabbing the blower wheel from the center shaft..... is there any play in the shaft ?
 
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Old 12-27-18, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by PJmax

Try grabbing the blower wheel from the center shaft..... is there any play in the shaft ?
No, there is not play, in the shaft. However, I just turned on the a/c to test it while front panel was off and I could see the fan struggling to spin, then heard what sounded like the motor straining and the fan stopped spinning.
 

Last edited by c1351996; 12-27-18 at 12:09 PM.
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Old 12-28-18, 10:45 AM
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If the motor bearings requires lubrication, when was the last time they were lubricated?
 
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Old 12-29-18, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by beezlebob

If the motor bearings requires lubrication, when was the last time they were lubricated?
Donít Know, if the motor bearings require lubrication, or when was the last time they were, if they do. That said, how do I confirm, whether or not they do and how to do it? 🤔
 
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Old 12-29-18, 12:20 PM
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That looks like an ECM type motor. They don't have lubricatable bearings.
 
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Old 12-29-18, 04:44 PM
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Blower housing may have a tag indicating motor lubrication. If not, look for a hole on the circumference of the motor's exposed end cap. There may be a plastic plug in the hole. Use a mirror and flashlight to check the far side of the end cap. If there is one,you have to remove the blower housing as there is an oil hole on the motor's other end cap as well.
 
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Old 12-30-18, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Pjmax


That looks like an ECM type motor...
You are correct; "Motor Type: ECM (X-13)"
https://www.gemaire.com/rheem-rhll-h...specifications
 
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Old 01-03-19, 08:19 AM
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Perhaps, time to call in a pro?
 
 

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