Hilmor Digital 4-Port Manifold V.S. Fieldpiece SMAN4 - Page 3
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  1. #27
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Central TX
    From the first time I saw the hilmor gauges I thought they were gimmicky. A co-worker had to have them. The first set the clamps would not calibrate at all. He took that set back and the replacement would calibrate ok. It didn't take long before the second set started loosing calibration also. The hook fell out shortly later only to find it is held in by a plastic piece that is glued in!!! They are very slow to react to pressure and temp changes. I have tried to find something I could say good about them but I can't. Maybe the knob to change refrigerants but other then that they are complete junk IMO.

  2. #28
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Savannah, Ga/H.H. Island, S.C.

    Hilmor Digital 4-Port Manifold V.S. Fieldpiece SMAN4

    Quote Originally Posted by Home&Marine View Post
    Yea... One of my Supply Houses also has the Hilmor stuff. I always tinker with the gauges when I'm at the counter. I ask one of the guys, "You selling many of these"? His reply was "Yea, and we end up getting almost as many back as we've sold".

    I'm sorry but I would trade my oldest set of DC 1600's for a new set of Hilmor.
    I know I posted last year that I wouldn't buy a set of the Hilmor's but curiosity got the best of me. I have bought a set of the Hilmor digitals. Not even in the same ballpark as the AK900's, SMAN's, or even some of the other digitals. The Hilmor's have a few things that could be drastically improved upon. I hope to do a review in the next coming weeks.

  3. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Central TX
    Quote Originally Posted by qwerty hvac View Post
    Get the ak900s and forget the rest.

    The future isn't what it use to be.
    The iManifold is another good option. It is built like a tank and for the price I suspect the internals to be top notch.

  4. #30
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Washington, DC
    I just bought my first set of digitals today and went with the SMAN4 to go with my many other FP tools. I'm very excited about using them ASAP. Question for you guys about digitals. Do you use yours for everything? Basic checks, adjustments, vacuum, recovery, etc.? And what about on different refrigerant types, do you need to purge the hoses first when switching between them?

    Coincidentally, I watched the 24 minute video Jim Bergman put on about the iManifold tonight. I didn't get them when they first were introduced. Now I'm definitely in awe of them! I want them badly but at $750 plus attachments it will have to wait a while. But they sure are impressive!

    In the meantime I'm anxiously awaiting the FP app for the SMAN4 and SDP2. Does anybody know what exactly it will consist of?

  5. #31
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Atlanta GA area
    Quote Originally Posted by ga-hvac-tech View Post

    Here is a story about a DC:

    I replaced a furnace/coil in a crawl back in the fall, I think it was the week before THXgiving. Tweaked the R-22 in the AC, using my brand new DC AK-900 on a brand new Titan-2 manifold (literally the first time to use them). The next day I could not find the gauges... went back to the jobsite and looked all around... no luck. Told the HO... he said he would keep an eye out for them.
    Well today (Sunday, April 27), he text's me that he found them.

    Evidently I had hung them on a bush limb when I was carrying stuff back to my van... and forgot them. For some reason I did not see them when I looked. The HO was trimming the bushes and found them.
    I am thankful to get them back... that was an investment of around 6 C notes including the manifold and hoses and hose end valves.

    I now have 3 (yes, three) DC AK-900's on Titan manifolds in my van (replaced the ones that were lost)...
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike19 View Post
    And even though your digicools had sat outside for six months through hot and cold, and had been rained and maybe even snowed on, you turned them on and they still worked fine, didn't they?
    Quote Originally Posted by ga-hvac-tech View Post
    YUP... turned them on and they came right up. Asked the HO if I could put then on the unit, he said sure. Hooked them up and triggered the contactor for about 10 seconds... the pressures and saturated temps responded just like they were supposed to. Then clamped both temp probes around my fore-finger and waited a few minutes... both temps read the same.

    Now for anyone that thinks DC's are not tough... we had a handful of days in single digits this winter, a dozen or more in the teens, a 2"+ snow day, and have had a few 1"+ rain days... the DC's were hanging in a bush in the weather...


    Nothing more needs to be said...

    Edit: Doug Lockhart--- you are welcome to use this testimony on your website... just send me a spare AK-900... then I will have 4... LOL. Seriously, you are welcome to use the testimony, no pmt needed.
    Today I changed an AC and coil... and used the newly recovered DC AK900 mentioned above... did not even put a new battery in them (yet). They worked just like the other 2 sets I have in the van... so now I can say from experience that DC's can take the weather and keep right on working.

    They WILL get a new Alkaline battery next time I have time to change it... I put new batteries in ALL my gadgets in the Spring when AC checks start. (I start AC checks when the pollen season is almost over... it is not good value for the customer to put a new filter in their system, only to have it turn yellow with pollen within a week... Most of my customers agree with this policy).

    Quality work at a fair price with excellent customer service!

    Romans Ch's 5-6-7-8

    2 Chronicles 7:14

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