Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools

 
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Old 07-27-2012, 10:23 PM   #1
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Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


I recently had a conversation with a salesman who remarked that although the sale of condensers has hit a four year high he has only sold three quart bottles of vacuum pump oil. I purchased all three of those personally. This led me to ask How many guys out there are not evacuating systems.

One busy tec told me he puts the pump on and lets it run for an hour so he knows its dry and leak free. Another contractor told me he could hear when the system is evacuated the pump had a different sound when all the air was out. Finally and this is my favorite a tec who works for a company that takes a lot of work from me said My Boss wants us to purgf the system with nitrogen and then two more times with 410A or R22 which ever is in the condenser.

So the question is are there any tecs out there who have figured out how to install an AC without a Vacuum and a Vacuum gauge.

And does any one here use the vacuum gauge on there service manifold?
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Old 07-28-2012, 11:11 AM   #2
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Not possible. You can't get the water and other stuff out of the system without pulling a vacuum for a while. The ones who don't pull a vacuum are leaving it contaminated. It'll work, but it's bad for the system life. The good news is they'll sell more systems...

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Old 08-02-2012, 03:30 PM   #3
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


I pump system full of nitrogen to check for leaks,if it holds for 30 min I throw the vacuam pump on it and let it run 30 mins or so depending on whats left to do on rest of system.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:34 AM   #4
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


This is my point: I have been using a Micron gauge for 15 years on every system I install. I have replaced 2 compressors (out of maybe 300 installs) due to failing. I still maintain most of these systems and none leak.

With a micron gauge I have noticed I can usually evacuate a system in forty five minutes to an hour; However. on occasion it will take several hours (existing systems after a repair).

I see guys bringing compressors back to the supply houses complaining that they are crap. One tech said he had replaced three compressors this summer on Carrier units he had installed last year. I asked if he used a micron gauge and he said yes the one on his manifold I asked how low he pulled the vacuum he said past 30 (those are inches not microns).

If you do not have a micron gauge my question is Why.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:59 AM   #5
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Ive never had a compressor failure I can remember off the top of my head from any of my installs over the last 20 plus years,Ive changed out many condensors in the past before the big 410a craze that had junk compressors because Ive never seen the sense in putting a compressor in a 10 plus year old unit.
Of course back in those days I could buy a 2t 10seer condensor for around $400.00 and sell it for around $750.00 which wasnt bad for 2 hrs of work with a helper.
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Old 08-03-2012, 04:23 PM   #6
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


LOL... I have to use 2 vacuum pumps on some of the equipment I work on. 1 would take a day or more to get to 500 microns on some of them.

I'd hate to see some guy just pull down until his compound gauge reads 29" mercury on the larger systems. That would leave a lot of contaminates in them.


many of the guys that don't use micron gauge were taught they don't need to use one, by someone that was taught the same thing. They just don't know any better.
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:38 PM   #7
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


How on earth are all those systems that were installed 20 years ago without using a micron gauge still running?
Im going to send a letter off to the city mechanical board suggesting that all condensing units installed before 2000 should be pulled down into a vacuam using a micron gauge just to be sure somebody hasnt been topping them off with freon when nobody is looking,because theres no way they can possibly be working right.
Im also going to suggest that all techs in omaha be certified to run a vacuam pump and micron gauges just like the grade 6 license we need to check backflow preventers and they should be calibrated annualy just like my backflow testing gauges for $400.00 a year.
Dont laugh if the city of omaha thought they could enforce it and make money theyd be all over it!
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:56 PM   #8
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Look at how many systems that were installed 20 years ago without a micron gauge that have either been replaced already, or were plagued with problems.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:04 AM   #9
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


How many systems have you guys came across (percentage-wise) that had to do with condensibles in the system. We have a dry climate, so maybe that is a major factor, but truthfully, condensibles rarely is an issue around here.

Man, we have had a lot of capcitor issues here.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:06 AM   #10
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
Look at how many systems that were installed 20 years ago without a micron gauge that have either been replaced already, or were plagued with problems.
Many factors in why those systems have been replaced. Lack of a Micron gauge, I doubt is the main culprit.
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:51 AM   #11
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Quote:
Originally Posted by flashheatingand View Post
Many factors in why those systems have been replaced. Lack of a Micron gauge, I doubt is the main culprit.
Unfortunately, no way to know for sure one way or the other.

But looking at a compound gauge and seeing that its holding 29" vacuum and thinking its a dried system, is a falsehood. Can still have moisture in it, and cause troubles down the road.

Moisture is a non condensable.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:02 PM   #12
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


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Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
Look at how many systems that were installed 20 years ago without a micron gauge that have either been replaced already, or were plagued with problems.
I still service many of the condensors Ive installed over the years,and Ive had yet to see a bad compressor in any of them.
Dont worry in 20 years guys will be using computerized gauges and theyll be wondering how you guys with micron gauges ever got anything to work with such crude equipment!
I say use what works best for the situation.
Its just like drag racing most days I put my money on the guy whos spent 30 plus years fine tuning his combination over a kid with a fancy new high tech toy that doesnt know how to use it ,and by the time he does know how to use it hes an old guy with some other new kid giving him crap about it!

Weve all seen technology change by the month,so I just use what my little brain can handle.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:27 PM   #13
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Used my first micron gauge back around 81. They aren't new technology.

Trane already has a self charging unit out. You connect the tank and a cord or 2 and it decides when it has enough charge in it.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:42 PM   #14
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Im thinking more along the lines of being new to somebody who hasnt used one or guys fresh out of tech school who are using this stuff.
Ive got a guy who works part time for me thats still in school who thinks theyre the coolest thing in the world,of course he also thinks that electronic leak detectors and cnc plasma cutters for making duct work are cool also.
Then when he goes out in the field with an old dinosaur like me to do a condensor/coil changeout or furnace change out and has to use hand tools and my old 4' brake to actually make stuff like we have done since the beginning of time he thinks it sucks!
Every thing on this 29 ford that needed to be replaced/modified including the visor over the windshield and chopped/filled roof was built by an old caveman that still knows how to use hand tools the way theyve been used for generations.
yes,I am a caveman!
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:47 PM   #15
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


I was doing sheet metal for 3 years, before I knew they actually had electric and air hammers for putting it together. LOL

Use to drill the hole, and then screw in by hand a pan head screw to fasten the plenums to the furnace/air handler.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:58 PM   #16
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Amen brother!
I got started in Electrical trade around 79-80 as a helper before going in Army fall of 82.
First day on the job boss tells me i get to run a "south omaha back hoe",Im thinking this is gonna be gonna be cool till he comes out of trailer with a shovel and says dig me a trench boy!
I remember my first cordless drill was an old hand me down black and decker somebody gave me,what a learning curve its been!
I think everybody should start out the same way,with old worn out hand me down tools.
If they can work with them theyll be really good at doing service work in my book once they get decent stuff to work with,I just think they start these new guys thinking all they need is high end tools without the know how to fix stuff in the real world
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Old 08-04-2012, 01:08 PM   #17
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


I agree. New guys should start out with analog gauges and strap on temp probes, so they have to do the math themselves. So they learn how to think for themselves.
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Old 08-04-2012, 01:32 PM   #18
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Oh, no, I am not giving up the impact drill with the flexi-bit. Granted, for the quick stuff, all one needs is a 6 in one, but, I am not down with the drilling and rivets.

As for temp probes and the gauges, I remember when I was fresh out of school, doing all of that stuff. I think I messed up a few systems, as I went along un-supervised with a little edumuhcation. You know charging, and likely overcharging, as we know, the sh thing doesn't happen all at once. Thinking for yourself isn't always a good thing...

Bottom line is: Are your installs, trouble free, and that the equipment doesn't break down. If you need a micron gauge to make sure there is no drama, fine. If you have had moisture related issue, then maybe you should start using one. Whatever, I base my compass on wether the system works right, is safe, and looks pretty.
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Old 08-04-2012, 04:23 PM   #19
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


I think an 06E compressor looks pretty. An when your vacuuming a system that has 120 foot of line set with 4 or more evap circuits. Using a micron gauge is just another precaution to keep you from having to pay for another 06E.

On some of them, I use 2 vacuum pumps.

One of the guys that taught me use to say. You don't need to run the vacuum pump real long. The FD has to have something to do.
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Old 08-04-2012, 04:42 PM   #20
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Re: Vacuum Pump Micron Gauge And Other Optional Tools


Most of the linesets I ever have to deal with are 15-20' long,its been a long time since ive had one more than 30' to deal

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