HVAC help!?!

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by carbon_15, Feb 13, 2010.

  1. carbon_15

    carbon_15 1*

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    Got 6 inches of snow on the ground and no heat...
    The power was out for a few hours last night and now the heat will not come on. The thermostat clicks and says "running" but nothing is happening. I have checked the breakers, but that is as far as my hvac knowledge will take me. Its an electric heat pump with an outside unit.
    Jason

    *pics added below*
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  2. 4MUL8R

    4MUL8R

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    There are breakers outside the home at the outdoor unit. They are inside a small grey box from which the power to the compressor is delivered. Be very careful. You are on wet ground. See if that breaker is tripped and if so reset it.
     

  3. NRA_guy

    NRA_guy Unreconstructed

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    Sorry. I could help if your unit was not a heat pump. They have gotten so fancy with controls nowadays in order to save energy that I no longer would offer any help.

    Does your indoor fan run?

    Can you set the stat to "FAN - ON" and get the indoor fan to run?

    Have you checked the breaker out by the unit? Probably mounted on the wall next to the outdoor unit.

    Have you checked to make sure snow did not physically damage the little thermostat wires that go to the outdoor unit?

    I don't suppose you have auxiliary strip heaters in the system for when it gets really cold, do you?

    How cold is it outdoors there, by the way?

    Well, at least you get a bump...
     
  4. Slacker

    Slacker Millennium Member

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    You will also have breakers on your indoor unit. If your indoor unit will run and you have an electric heat strip installed you can set your thermostat to "emergency heat" and it will run without the outdoor unit. Also, if you get everything up and running you need to be sure the outdoor unit is not snow covered. Sweep the snow off the top and from around the sides so it can get airflow.
     
  5. carbon_15

    carbon_15 1*

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    I set the fan to manual, and it wont come on. I looked at the outside unit and all I could find was a service disconnect...couldnt find any breakers or fusses. Anywhere else I could check for resets or breakers?
     
  6. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    Let's work on just the indoor unit.Turn the breakers off then back on.You should have breakers on the unit and at the panel.
    If you don't have breakers on the unit.
    1. cut power to the system.
    2. remove the top door on the inside unit.
    3. see if you have the old style bar fuses.
    4. turn power back on and set the fan to manual and the heat to emergency heat.
    You should get 5kw to 20 kw of electric heat from that.

    Your outside unit needs to be dug out with 12 inches of space all around it.Also be sure the fan turns free and has not had ice build-up blocking it from turning.
     
  7. filthy infidel

    filthy infidel 100% Infidel

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    You may also try fresh batteries in the thermostat- if they are weak the relay won't energize. Good luck!
     
  8. bcmclane

    bcmclane

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    Who makes the equipment? More than likely you are not going to have breakers at the indoor or outdoor units. You prob will have a 60 amp non-fused pull disconnect. This will be a grey box with a swinging cover. Inside there will black disconnect that you pull out to kill power. If it's fused, you'll find the buss fuses attached to the disconnect, but won't be able to see them until you've pulled it out. Check that first if you know the breakers in your panel aren't tripped.

    The pull disconnect must be re-inserted with the correct side up or you'll get now power. It should be labeled "off" and "on" so you can only read it one way.

    After you've done that and there is still no power, take them both out again and focus on the indoor unit. What size is the breaker feeding the indoor unit? How many square feet is your house and do you only have one system?

    take the cover off the indoor unit using a 1/4" or 5/16" socket, or you may be able to use a flathead screwdriver. Look for a board and transformer. If you don't see them right away, there will be a rectangular metal plate you'll have to remove to expose the high voltage connections to the contactor, etc. Anyway, find the board. It should have a 3 or 5 amp car fuse on it. Check to see if it's blown. If you don't have a fuse, look for a micro-breaker on the transformer itself.

    Start with that and let me know how it goes. We can dig further into it after getting to the board. A blown fuse on the board is more than likely your problem.
     
  9. byf43

    byf43 NRA Patron Life Member

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    From the old days. . .

    A heat pump is basically an air conditioner with a reversing valve.

    After cleaning the snow/ice from the "outdoor unit", go inside and set the thermostat to AIR CONDITIONING, and set the thermostat low enough so that the a/c actually comes on.

    Then, go outside and see if the compressor is running.

    When a heat pump goes into 'defrost mode', it basically goes into a/c and the electric resistance heaters (inside) come on, to provide heat, while the compressor runs in it's a/c mode and heats the coils outside, to defrost them. There may be a heater coil (for the lack of a better term) around the compressor (to help defrost it), too.
    Used to be you could change the interval of the defrost mode, from like 90 minutes to 45 minutes.

    Now. . . . I'm not sure if you can change the defrost cycle timing.

    IF the compressor is running and defrosts the unit, you COULD have a sticking 'reversing valve'

    If I missed it, I apologize, but, what make/brand unit is this???

    Lastly, compressors do have a habit of going bad at the 'wrong' times.
    Been there. Done that.
    (That's why we took our heat pump out and put in an oil furnace w/a 14 SEER a/c unit!)
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  10. carbon_15

    carbon_15 1*

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    This is what I see when I open the panel. I dont see anything else easily removable or anything that looks like a panel board or transformer.
    Any ideas?


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  11. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    The orange wire coming in the top right of the pic.

    Is that only a 10 ga wire?
     
  12. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    I just thought of something!
    Your unit should have a reset outside. down on the ground-same side as the metal cover over the compressor area.Right next to the copper line-set(outside the unit) you should see a big red button.
     
  13. carbon_15

    carbon_15 1*

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  14. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    Looking here at a chart I have.The most back-up heat you could have is 3KW.
    looking at the pic I'm not Sure I see any,I'm not seeing the rating label either.:dunno:
     
  15. bcmclane

    bcmclane

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    His unit isn't going to have one and it would have nothing to do with the problem.


    OP: you do not have a control board and your transformer doesn't have a micro-breaker. It looks like you've got between 7.5 and 10kw heat strips running off 10ga wire which is very unsafe. It should be fed with #6. Your system is VERY basic. I see a float switch attached to your secondary drain pan. Should be wired to break control voltage if your condensate line gets clogged. Is there any water in that metal pan? If you move the switch up and down does it make a "click" (put the cover back on and restore power before trying)?

    I assume you don't have a volt meter?
     
  16. bcmclane

    bcmclane

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    His auxiliary heat is the 4 elements on the left side of the picture tied to the sequencer. I highly doubt it's 3kw, but guess it's possible in Carolina.

    OP: How many square feet is your house and what size is the breaker feeding your indoor unit?
     
  17. carbon_15

    carbon_15 1*

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    its 30 amp on the attic unit and 20 amp for the outside unit. I looked around the lineset and couldnt find a reset. The outside unit is a WeatherKing
    The house is 1100 square feet.
    There is no water in the pan and the switch makes a click when I lift up on it
     
  18. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    10 ga-30 amp
    Mismatched equipment.
    Not good,someone cut corners

    I'm done guessing on this one.
    Sorry
     
  19. bcmclane

    bcmclane

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    You are safe with the 30 amp breaker. Well, at this point it's not much more you can do without a volt meter. Try taking the cover back off the air handler. Remove the float switch from the circuit. Wire nut the green and red control wires together. Does the fan come on after doing this?
     
  20. 45reloader

    45reloader Live Free

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    Is the thermostat a Lux Pro
    They are known to fail.