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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    7

    Confused Old Manitowoc ice machine refrigerant.

    First let me start by saying I'm a long time reader first time poster and have always valued the useful information over the last few years. This is the first fourm I've come across that has real information instead of hacks telling me just mix refrigerants, "fuc* da rules".

    Anyway.. I got a complete 1994 Manitowoc 600lb ice machine (water cooled) for free. The machine has been sitting in a shut down restaurant for 10 years. Brought it home, wired and plumbed it, ran it, and saw the bottom line on the evaporator frosting up but the evaporator seemed to stay pretty warm and failed to produce ice. So I checked the pressures and my suction was -15"HG while my head pressure was 55~60PSI during the freeze cycle. The service manual calls for 19-6PSI suction and 125-130PSI head with the ambient air temp of 70o F. With that being said it has just about no refrigerant left in it. It was originally charged with 32oz of R12. So I think I'm going to evacuate the system and recharge it. Now for my question.. Can I use R290 (propane) as an R12 alternative being that it carries the mineral oil from the compressor? BEFORE you all nail me to the cross and crucify me for mentioning propane I personally feel it is a terrible idea to use it in automotive or any other kind of Air conditioning. It is widely used in Europe and various other parts of the world. Now I have seen people use it in refrigerators and heard of possible ignition problems with evaporator or condenser fan motors and the defrost timer too. But this is a water cooled unit that is going to sit in my pool house screen porch and maybe be used 10 times a year. I would LOVE to just use R414B (Hot Shot) and be done with it but I cant justify buying a 25lb keg for $250 and using only like $30 of it. Any thoughts, insights, help and insults would be great. Thanks. By the way I've been researching this topic for about 3 weeks now and get mixed schools on this. Some people swear by it others not so much. I just would use it in any air conditioner especially automotive systems.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    7
    Forgot to mention it's a TXV system not a capillary tube.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    3,499
    At one time you could buy hot shot in the small cans to use in a car. I don't know if any of the auto parts stores sell them where you are.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New York, ny
    Posts
    189
    They sell the small cans online search for them.


    Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Western KY
    Posts
    1,221
    If you are seriously considering propane, I do not suggest that by the way, finding and repairing leaks FIRST is highly recommended. I'd do hot shot if I didn't have a little 12 stashed away. Finding and fixing the leaks will most likely require a trace charge and ELD. 22 will work fine for that.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Pittsburgh
    Posts
    181
    Why not just use some 134a? If its just a beater, and used occasionally it should run for awhile like that even though the oil miscibility is non exsistant. I wouldn't advise propane. Think of this you get a very small leak, the propane accumulates in that box, then bam, the contactor pulls in.. not a good scenario

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Chicagoland Area
    Posts
    4,564
    Where is Feng when you need him?
    Officially, Down for the count

    YOU HAVE TO GET OFF YOUR ASS TO GET ON YOUR FEET

    I know enough to know, I don't know enough
    Liberalism-Ideas so good they mandate them

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Western KY
    Posts
    1,221
    Quote Originally Posted by 2sac View Post
    Where is Feng when you need him?
    Still on bed rest. That was a very long train he fell under.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    7
    Thank you all for your responses! I did consider putting R134A in it but it will eventually lead to compressor failure and the machine is almost mint so if I plan to sell it I would like it to last. I think I'm just going to go with hot shot. The more research I do the more I question using propane as a refrigerant. The only people who seem to tell me its a great idea are back yard half-assers who don't have access to the correct materials. Just because it works or because other people do it does not mean it's a good idea. Also I read that your average BBQ grill propane has a high moisture content. If that's true it will just create more problems.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Phoenix,AZ
    Posts
    2,874
    ebay has all the r-12 you need!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    wedged in freezer shelf
    Posts
    6,648
    If it's mint and you want to do it right I'm almost positive R-401A was the recommended juice from the factory.
    “If You Can Dodge A Wrench You Can Dodge A Ball”

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    7
    Another thing that popped up was this stuff called ES12.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    wedged in freezer shelf
    Posts
    6,648
    Yep thats what it was and "Failure to install new TXV will result in compressor failure"

    http://www.manitowocice.com/docs/upl...ns/8009663.pdf
    “If You Can Dodge A Wrench You Can Dodge A Ball”

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