heat pump condensation

Old 08-09-02, 07:31 PM
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heat pump condensation

I have an upright Bryant electric heat pump (2.5ton) 3 years old. Condensation from the indoor coils drips down onto the filter and from there into the return ducting underneath and from there to the basement floor, etc. Not good. The drain is plastic has a trap and flows freely. The problem seems to be the water drips off the coils instead of running down them. Coils appear clean. Unit appears level. Pan does not run under entire slant of coil due to vertical air flow.

Had a contractor come out to service the unit and check out the condensation. He said the freon was low (around 40, didn't catch the units). He recharged the system to around 70.

Delta T was 74-64=10F before. Now 74-55 by my thermometer.

Was not having problems keeping the house at set temperature, just concerned about water. Technician thought we would have had comfort / energy cost issues at that level.

He recommended a leak check. Is this something we should do?

Could there be some other reason the water doesn't hit the pan?

Haven't seen as much condensation since recharge, but it hasn't been very hot either...
Old 08-10-02, 04:03 AM
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I'm surprised that with the system that low on freon that you didn't experience a lack of cooling capacity. It's possible that the coil had a partial ice buildup and water was melting/running off the edge of the ice. Has the water always dripped or is this a recent occurence? You definitely want to find that freon leak. I don't know if they still do, but Bryant units used to use flare connections for the piping where it connects to both the outdoor unit and the indoor unit. If your units have the flare connections, try running your finger around the fittings and feel for a film of oil.
Old 08-10-02, 07:24 PM
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The dripping has occurred for the life of the unit. Why I didn't do anything earlier, not sure. I would just occaisionally towel down the inside of the unit during the 1-2 hot months. I didn't notice any ice, but I would wait for the fan to turn off so it may have melted before I saw it. Our home was built in 1986, so it is well insulated.

The pipe that comes out of the unit looks like it was crimped to match the size of the pre-existing piping that is used to connect the two units. The connective pipe was not replaced when this unit was installed. It does look like the fitting is flared, but the installer didn't use it that way. I tried to attach a photo, no luck.

I didn't notice any oily residue, but the weld is much darker than the surrounding copper (almost black). Rough. Some small spots of light blue patina (sp?). The area stays cold even when not running. It may be my imagination but I seemed to feel a slight breeze at the weld of the larger pipe where it meets the inside unit.
Old 08-11-02, 02:03 PM
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Possable Leak

If you suspect a leak you can use liquid dishwashing soap and cover the suspected area with the soap and if you do have a leak it will blow bubbles.
Old 08-11-02, 08:06 PM
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For the sake of your comfort, and the compressor, you need to leak check your unit as mentioned in a previous post. Do the best you can with the aid of a flashlight and with the fan turned off. If a leak is found, you still have to have an HVAC tech to make the repairs and HE should make a more through check with his electronic or halide detector. That "slight breeze" you mentioned could have been a little supply air leaking around the unit's copper piping. I take it that this was a replacement unit, since you said the copper pipe was "crimped" onto the units stub-outs and you've had water leaks from day one, its possible the platform its on is not level due to age or previous leaking. Get yourself a spirit level to make sure the unit is pitched in both directions, towards the drain pan outlet (pvc). Your 10o TD is unacceptable and the 19o is in the middle of the ballpark. Keep a clean filter.

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