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Old 09-02-2006, 09:42 AM   #1
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Chiller recharge

Anyone know of a good place to recharge a chiller in central Virginia? Or atleast tell me what I need in order to do it myself? Thanks
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Old 09-02-2006, 12:22 PM   #2
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chiller recharge

Before the unit can be recharged, it must be pressure tested and leak checked to find where all the refrigerant escaped from. Any air conditioning company in your area should be able to help you out.
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Old 09-02-2006, 01:43 PM   #3
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Old 09-02-2006, 03:20 PM   #4
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I called the local fridge place in Colonial Heights and they had no idea what I was talking about. I will try the AC places. I will have to visit Mike in Strictly Marine in Hopewell on Tuesday and see if he can help. I would really like to do this myself rather than have someone else do it though.
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Old 09-03-2006, 03:30 AM   #5
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you will have to find out what gas the chiller runs on.... most refrigerant gasses are illegal to vent to the atmosphere and need to be re-captured before you can refill! if it has a leak then it needs to be fixed. in australia
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Old 09-03-2006, 09:36 AM   #6
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chiller recharge

Trotty is right, it is illegal to vent refrigerants to the atmosphere. Also refrigerants are cancer causing and escaping gasses can cause severe burns and even frostbite.These gasses are under pressures of 250 to 300 psi and are very dangerous. For your own safety let a trained technician do it for you. Not only that, you cannot purchase these refrigerants unless you have had the proper training in their safe use. Here in Canada it is cadded ODP Ozone Depletion Prevention training, and you must be registered in the trade to recieve it.
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Old 09-03-2006, 09:54 AM   #7
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OK thanks folks, I think I found a place that has a mobile service.
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Old 09-06-2006, 04:10 PM   #8
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Re: chiller recharge

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fireworks
Trotty is right, it is illegal to vent refrigerants to the atmosphere. Also refrigerants are cancer causing and escaping gasses can cause severe burns and even frostbite.These gasses are under pressures of 250 to 300 psi and are very dangerous. For your own safety let a trained technician do it for you. Not only that, you cannot purchase these refrigerants unless you have had the proper training in their safe use. Here in Canada it is cadded ODP Ozone Depletion Prevention training, and you must be registered in the trade to recieve it.
Well, you are right on some points, but, perhaps, a bit mis-informed on others. I happpen to be a licensed in the handling of "refrigerants" (USA, Enironemtal Protection Agency or EPA). Refrigerants are only under 250 to 300 PSI when the unit is on, and, obviously the compressor is running and that depends on how the system was engineered. And, you would only get frostbite if you were to come into contact with a refigerant in a liquid form. Something as small as a chiller only uses a few ounces of refrigerant while a home air conditioner might use 4 or 5 pounds or more. Anything that bleeds to the atmosphere is insignificant and if it has a leak it's already bled out anyway. You can purchase certain refrigerants such as for your car air conditioner but not others. ODP stands for ozone depletion potential and not ozone depletion prevention. ODP is a measure of a given refrigerant gas's ability to "consume" ozone molecules. It varies wildly with ozone frinedly gases becopming more and more prevalent. My comments stem from 25+ years of engineering level experience and hands on know how in air conditioning and refrigeration. Good grief, this subject would take a few textbooks and a few months to discuss thoroughly.

I digress though and agree that you want a trained technician to service your chiller, specialized tools and equipment notwithstanding. I would suggest a person who is trained on refigerators and freezers as opposed to big air conditioning systems.
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Old 09-06-2006, 10:15 PM   #9
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Cool, thanks. The Chiller uses R134A the same that is used in cars. R134A can be purchased at the local Wal-Mart so my question now becomes if anyone can buy it at WM why can't just anyone charge a chiller? I saw that they sell one with a tint so you can spot a leak with a UV light. I also found that you can buy the gauges to charge and read the chiller online so it looks like this can be a do it yourself project. Any further comments would be appreciated and I thank everyone for looking out for my safety and warning me about the dangers.
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Old 09-07-2006, 12:50 AM   #10
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The thing with doing it yourself is because in order for it to work properly they vacuum out all of the old stuff until it there is literally nothing in the system. No moisture no air nothing just a solid vacuum. R134a is very easy to get and you dont have to be licensed to recharge it. At least not in the US. The other thing with "recharging" your system is that this stuff can last for years and most of the time it is leaked out before it can ever come close to being needed to be recharged. If you can find the leak and fix it yourself then take it over to maybe even your local mechanic who has an AC machine to drop it to a complete vacuum then add the proper amount of R134A in then, yes you could do it yourself. I can do it myself on my cars but its such a hastle to do it I just take it in. When I was working in my old shop I just did it myself when we were slow because we had all the proper tools and equipment. IMO it isnt worth the hastle unless you are really motivated to do it yourself. HTH
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