Geo, Compressor, Zones
Hello. I just found this site am I am very happy I have. My situation could fall under residential but I believe the best answers will come from the commercial side of this forum.
I have a 2000 sq. ft slab building with 12' high ceilings. Over the past two years I blew out 95% of the original interior and installed two new bathrooms (one commercial) a waiting room, utility room, office, workshop storage space and two recording studios. The recording studios are built as complete separate pods within the structure. 2"x4" walls with R-13 toped with 3 layers of 5/8" drywall. A 2.5" air gap then another 2"x4" R-13 and again topped with 3 layers of 5/8" drywall. Special door seals surround solid core doors that open away from each other. Ceilings are 3 layers of 5/8" drywall to 2"x6" joists with R-19, a 2.5 air gap then my trusses with R-38. Needless to say these two rooms are overbuilt for sound proofing needs but also create an airtight insulated space where moving musicians will be creating some BTU's.
A 4 ton Hydron Geo was installed by a contractor who also installed 3 Zonex dampers. One for each studio and the other for the rest of the building.
Problem #1): Copeland Scroll compressor. This thing is LOUD with a large amount of vibration. A factory rep immediately sent a new compressor with a compressor blanket, new capacitor ( no increase in size ) and a entire new fan unit (with cage) due to the fact that this unit must have been dropped HARD and suffered bent interior components. Installer replaced components. The compressor is as loud as before. This unit is a horizontal style and rests on top of a mezzanine created by the 2 bathrooms with lower ceiling heights. All 2'x6" construction with insulation and heavy board covers for walls and ceilings. Bathroom fixtures rattle and the start up noise will cause anybody to be startled. Should a compressor of this type be so loud and create such vibration and dim the lighting for the entire building? I increased the transformer size for our home from a 25KV to a 100KV. (The home and building are on the same property. All wiring is new and can handle the load fully.
Problem#2) Zoning - 3 dampers were installed. The rep examined them yesterday. 2 don't even work and are the wrong models for the demands. Fresh air MUST be fed to the studios due to their tight construction. Situations will clearly occur when the studios will call for cooling while the waiting room and the rest will need heat. 3 thermostats involved. This is a TWO STAGE SINGLE PHASE unit. The thermostats in the studios are Emerson and are for SINGLE STAGE operation only. A more complex thermostat is in the waiting room that can see two stage requirements. This morning I averted a FIRE when I replaced a blown 3 amp fuse inside of the Geo unit on the thermostat board. I checked the thermostats and found one of the studio single stage units arcing. I pulled the unit off of the wall and observed both backup batteries had blown (two new Duracell Alkaline AA). This sent acid to hit the circuit board allowing a fire to start. The outer casing and wall plates for the unit are scorched and the circuit board is burnt. What could cause 2 new batteries to blow out? Is there any chance that this was the wrong thermostat for the job when there was a call for two stage from the Geo? Any other experiences with 1F86-0471 firing up? I am replacing the 3 dampers with new working units that will be adjusted for constant air induction into the studios. Right now if all three worked NO air would be sent unless there is a call for heat or cooling due to the open closed cycle type installed right now.
Problem #4) Short cycling - At what point would a consumer be correct to call for service when the issue is short cycling. We have had Geo in our home for the past 15 years without any problems. I only say this so you know I am not new to this technology or application. When the three thermostats were set on a earlier test the unit started and stopped 10 times or more and that was only measured by the number of times the compressor kicked on or the second stage fan was called for. This unit sounded like it would explode if it kept up the pace it was set at.
So...I apologize for the long post. #1) Does it sound like I have a problem with the compressor? I am being told it is normal by the installer. #2) Do you believe the new damper plan with WORKING dampers, that allow for air to pass with the fan set to run full time, will work? Will this work with the the specific and unusual needs of the heating and cooling demands? #4) Relates to the last, will the new dampers work with the unit to provide a more efficient constant operation that equals the design of the system? #5) Is my other thermostat ready to explode? Should I just replace the burnt one with a new identical one?
I thank you very much. I am aware that professional courtesy may temper or keep some of you from diving into this full bore. I understand. I hope the anonymity of a forum like this may be to my advantage. Yes. You are correct. I am not very happy with the contractor I hired for this job and that includes a large number of reasons not to be mentioned here. Fortunately I am receiving outside help that is keeping me sane. Any additional assistance you can provide would be a godsend. Thanks again!
You definately need more help... #1 scrolls are noisy.. more noisy if running backwards. Suspend the horizontal unit and isolate from ceiling. #2 dimming lights. May be phase imbalance in your panel... Where phase A has more load than phase B.... Install a hard start on compressor to drop your starting amperage... #3 zonng is a good thing if done correctly... Should have a bypass damper or a dump zone..the unit will cycle more frequently if there are various loads in other zones. Say zone 1 is calling and satisfies... Then zone 3 needs cooling once satisfied zone 1 may need it again...6 times per hour is a good baseline for cycle rates .. really need someone who knows what they are doing to run through the whole system.. hope this helps a little.. good luck.
OHH and running backwards with the scroll. I did read about this. (Yeah Wiki) It said there had been a design change to eliminate backwards running on a compressor as new as mine. BUT since this is a Geo that heats and cools will it need to run backwards as part of the design? If that is a REALLY dumb question then let me have it!
Thank you. Your information that scrolls are noisier from a real world professional is different from Wiki statements. I was also under the impression (from Wiki) that scrolls started easier since they are never without full load and do not need to have a heavy start to get under way. The dimming. Yes the load is pretty well balanced as this is a single phase 240v system and the rest of the circuits are very close to equal. I do need to do a current check on each leg to have hard data. I was hoping to avoid an easy start just due to the cost. If I were to install the unit, is around $500 about right? Fortunately I have just gotten some pro help on the damper side. I am installing 3 new dampers this weekend to the existing controller and changing some of the CFM patterns. I hope this will put me on the right track. How do you fine professionals do accurate measurements on CFM at individual supply outlets? Yes I am going to hang the unit with steel rods for adjustments for exact placement of height. I do need to make the six points spring loaded and adjustable for vibration isolation. At 480 lbs with more weight on the compressor side i know I will need to be able to compensate for that. Any advice for spring selection would be great.
passintyme...."you definitely need more help" is priceless. I am still chuckling as I type. I need it for more than just my HVAC issues! Since I have to, for the most part, go it alone on this any advice from you good people is appreciated. If what I have said seems to be on the right track, if I am asking the correct questions then it would be nice to know that.
By the way, I reread my last paragraph of my initial post and I think I was out of line referring to "professional courtesy" as I did. Please understand that when I did have issues with my contractor every other HVAC company within the same county treated my like the plague. The funny thing was that anybody who would listen to me with a open mind saw how I was definitely not one of your "bad customers to be avoided". Instead the opposite was the case and that included unbiased county officials that required ME to answer questions. Anyway,How to measure CFM, any specific advise for spring adjustment design and CFM total load balance? thank you.
Compressor doesnt change direction. There is a reversing valve to change the direction the refrigerant flows.... sort of like the engine in your car. Ot only spins one way.
Geo is fundamentally no differnt than a regular air coled heat pump. Just the outdoor condenser coil and fan are replaced with a water coil and a pump. The compressor cant tell the difference... all it "sees" is copper. A refrigerant heats or cools copper.... and the compressor compresses the refrigerant.
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Hard start or torque assist is a small capacitor used to "kick the compressor" in the butt while starting.. it costs under 20 bucks.... Not the same as a soft start which gradually increases your Hz on start up.. as far as springs... Look on grangers web site and you should be able to find them... Any hanging type will work. The load rating is per spring so you don't have to go way oversized on them... Air flow can be measured with a "flow hood" which would require a contractor to do an air balance or an anometer and some calculating if you wish to purchase the tool.. you can find that online as well..4 ton unit will give you approx. 2000 cfm. Measure the return air and see if you are in that range on high blower setting... A 6" round supply duct will give you 110-120 cfm assuming the duct is sized correctly.
Please check your PMs.