Dealing with a Busy Schedule and a Challenging HVAC Job
As one of the busiest people in town, I find myself juggling the workload of three people single-handedly. Recently, I came across a particularly challenging job, a clogged drain that turned out to be much more than it initially seemed. In this article, I’ll recount my experience and detail how I solved the problem, despite my packed schedule.
Inspecting the Job Site and Identifying the Issue
Upon arriving at the job site, I discovered a suspicious amount of water in the drain pan. Assuming it was merely a clogged drain, I decided to take a closer look only to find the condenser fan motor wasn’t turning. The motor appeared quite rusty, which set off alarm bells, and prompted me to conduct a leak search in addition to fixing the motor.
Examining the Rusty Motor
The motor seemed to be in poor condition with lots of rust, which only heightened my suspicions that there might be a leak. The motor itself spun freely with the current, but numerous tests revealed it wasn’t producing enough voltage for it to turn. The motor was also hot, which indicated that it was receiving voltage, implicating a separate problem.
Diagnosing the Waterlogged Motor
Upon further investigation, I found that the motor was full of water. This was due to a plug that should have been removed but was still intact. The motor was clearly non-functional and required replacement. I noted down the specifications of the motor to find a suitable substitute. However, I couldn’t shake the feeling that something else was amiss.
Testing the Leak Theory
Given the amount of rust and excessive water in the drain pan, I suspected there might be a leak causing water to freeze up in the system. This theory was confirmed when I discovered a hissing leak in the system, quite significant at that. It was crucial that I identify the source of the leak and take appropriate action.
Assessing the Damage and Deciding on a Course of Action
Upon further inspection, I determined that the system was a 3-ton unit from 2001, nearing the end of its life. The age and condition of the system combined with the damage from the leak led me to conclude that it was time to replace the unit. Although it was possible to repair the system by fixing the leak and replacing the motor, the unit’s age and susceptibility to future malfunctions rendered it an impractical investment.
Reassembling the System and Moving Forward
Once I had decided on the best course of action, I reassembled the system and informed the customer of my decision. We agreed to replace the system with a newer, more efficient model instead of wasting time and resources on fixing an aging unit. In the end, it was a more cost-effective and reliable solution, and the customer appreciated my expertise and diligence in diagnosing and resolving not just a clogged drain, but multiple issues at once.
Despite an overloaded schedule and a complex HVAC problem, I was able to diagnose the issue and offer an effective solution promptly. This experience reinforced my belief in the importance of thorough inspection and investigation, always considering the possibility of additional underlying issues when facing a problem. My proactive approach led to the discovery of a significant leak in the system and saved the customer from further complications and expenses down the road.