Heat Pump Compressor Power Connection Problem - Would Appreciate Advice
I would appreciate some help from the pros here.
Last night the air going to my bedrooms got warm regardless of tstat setting. I went up to the attic to look things over. I found that while my blower and water pump motors were continuing to run, my compressor was not. (I have a WaterFurnace Envision NDV038 HP - 3 ton, 2-stage, variable speed).
Knowing my unit has a ComfortAlert diagnostic module, I checked the status LED lights. I found the red 'Trip' LED turned on. I successfully reset it by turning off the tstat. But, when turning the tstat back on, the compressor still didn't start up. And the 'Trip' LED came back on as soon as a pretty loud relay engaged (I think this is the compressor contactor). I even tried completely removing power to the HP by turning off the circuit breaker to the whole unit. But this this power recycle didn't correct things either.
I looked up in the WF manual what 'Trip' LED indicates - basically: no power is getting to the compressor. So I looked over the compressor itself (Copeland UltraTech ZPS30K4E-PVF-130) to see if there is a 'reset' switch, thinking that after letting everything rest for a while, this would be worth a try to get the unit running through the night.
I didn't find a compressor 'reset.' But I did discover a problem. The 3 wire electric power connection was significantly angled out from the compressor, and, it has a lot of deterioration like it had gotten pretty hot. Remembering the 'Trip' LED, I guessed that the compressor wasn't running because its electrical power connection finally gave out. I pushed the power connector all the way back onto the compressor, turned the circuit breaker back on, and waited through the startup cycle to find that the compressor now worked.
It looks like the connector was never fully seated properly on the compressor at the time of HP manufacture, or even when the compressor was manufactured. And over the course of the 11 months that I've had the HP, the connector heated up to the point that the connection finally failed.
This morning I called a (the only) WaterFurnace GeoPro Master Dealer near me, thinking this is a specialized problem that would require specific-to-WF expertise. The gentleman is going to come in the next few days. Since I think the connector will temporarily last a little bit, and since the maintenance/repair/install business here in the Dallas area is absolutely crazy right now, I told him I was comfortable being scheduled at his convenience.
During the course of the phone conversation, a few subjects came up that I'd really appreciate some help/comment with. Like many others who get helped here, I'd sure appreciate being reasonably knowledgeable in preparation for the technician coming to look things over.
1. For my model/version of Copeland compressor, is the power connection a Copeland factory installed molded connector that's not supposed to be 'disengageable' from the compressor body?
2. And if so, is there really a possibility that I might have to have a compressor change out to fix this problem (really don't want to do this - my HP runs really great)? Or is there something available to the pros to do a reliable and safe field connection of power to a Copeland compressor?
3. Is this something that would/should be covered by my WF 10 years parts / labor allowance warranty?
4. And is this something that only a WF specially trained technician can fix, or, is it something I can be comfortable with good professional techs overall?
Its not something the compressor has to be replaced for.
Should be covered by warranty.
No one else has to accept WF warranty, so they can charge you what they want, if you use someone else.
The wires on your compressor are designed, so that they can be removed. It does not sound like you need a new compressor, just a little maintenance.And yes, any reputable hvac Co. would be able to repair this,at a fairly reasonable price.
I very much appreciate the above comments - thanks!
I spoke too soon - this afternoon I lost the 3 ton unit. The 3-wire connector that supplies power to the compressor just won't stay on it. The molded connector that surrounds the 3 pins is badly disintegrated underneath the cap.
It's perplexing to figure out what might have caused the damage.
Thanks for the reassurance that a compressor change out is not needed to get the connection replaced.
I'm now waiting patiently for the WF Dealer to schedule sending out a technician to look this over.
If the compressor terminals are damaged,thy will eventually fail,then a new compressor will be needed.
Yep, that's what I'm afraid of, that the electrical connecting pins in the Fusite glass-to-metal hermetic seal ( http://www.fusite.nl/ ) are damaged.
Originally Posted by dash
I looked up details of my Copeland compressor model - it looks like there may be another (unused) 3-pin electric power connection on the other side of where my wires are connected to the compressor. I'll take a look tomorrow at my actual compressor to verify.
I have a temp sensor, connected to my home's temp monitoring system, hanging inside the cabinet that contains the compressor. The temperature never gets above from about 105 - 110°F during the afternoons at the moment (my unit is up in a hot attic). I wouldn't think this is hot enough to cause damage, but, I'll ask the technician when he comes (plus not much I can do about it).
A local firm came to look the problem over and was able to fix it. Turns out the electric power connector to the compressor is designed to be attached/removed.
Here's a few images:
The service pro said he hadn't ever seen something like this, and wasn't sure of the cause. Obviously a good amount of arcing had been occuring.
I also learned that the WaterFurnace Envision models have proven to be very reliable for the firm that came to my residence. Lots of installations, but few problems. That's encouraging.
Thanks for the helpful responses above. Hopefully the compressor hermetic power connection seal didn't get damaged.