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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    5

    TRANE electric heater blowing fuses

    m Unit is blowing 40amp fuses between breaker sub-panel (40amp for Blower, 40amp for Heater) and indoor unit. Fed by 10g wire.
    Heat pump surges when it activates.
    Progression- Temperatures drop in the 30's (Dec), noticed air not warm, Tech found: heating elements disconnected at Thermostat (by Tech for previous owners to save energy), re-connected, in 5 days no power to thermostat agian, Tech found: fuse blown, claimed fuse needs to be a 50amp fuse fed by 8g wire. Installer claimed bad fuse. Unit work until today Mar 3rd. WHAT IS GOING ON? I hope the unit doesn't start a house fire and spread to a Wildland fire. Unit installed 6/05.
    I need your ideas before installer claims not his issue. Please can you give me any ideas why the unit is doing this. Why do two different Techs given different idea, is this common in the Industry.

    Thank You...
    Be Safe

    Air Handler: TWE049E13FB BTU-42K Strip Heat 7.5kw
    Heat Pump: 2TWX4042 Tons 3.5 HSPF 9.9 Seer 14

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    68,324
    10 guage wire is too small for 7.5KW's of electric resistance heat.
    My want to point out to installer, that its a code violation to connect that load to 10 guage wire. He can see that by looking in the National Electric Code book.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Fl
    Posts
    69
    10g only good up to 30amps (im no electrician, but what I always go by)

    So if thats true, then you could hypothetically pull 38amps , melt the wire, and never trip the breaker.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
    Posts
    4,843
    Tell your installer to reference the NEC book and or call your local code authority.
    A good HVAC tech knows how, an educated HVAC tech knows why!

    DEM


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    1,920
    Quote Originally Posted by intofire View Post
    m Unit is blowing 40amp fuses between breaker sub-panel (40amp for Blower, 40amp for Heater) and indoor unit. Fed by 10g wire.
    Heat pump surges when it activates.
    Progression- Temperatures drop in the 30's (Dec), noticed air not warm, Tech found: heating elements disconnected at Thermostat (by Tech for previous owners to save energy), re-connected, in 5 days no power to thermostat agian, Tech found: fuse blown, claimed fuse needs to be a 50amp fuse fed by 8g wire. Installer claimed bad fuse. Unit work until today Mar 3rd. WHAT IS GOING ON? I hope the unit doesn't start a house fire and spread to a Wildland fire. Unit installed 6/05.
    I need your ideas before installer claims not his issue. Please can you give me any ideas why the unit is doing this. Why do two different Techs given different idea, is this common in the Industry.

    Thank You...
    Be Safe

    Air Handler: TWE049E13FB BTU-42K Strip Heat 7.5kw
    Heat Pump: 2TWX4042 Tons 3.5 HSPF 9.9 Seer 14
    As far as wire size, which is the most important issue, you need to call the electrician to do that. NO HVAC guy can do it for you. You have all info for the electrician to work on. Even though the HVAC guys are knowlegeable but the cannot touch it due to insurance.

    As fas as your last question, it is common on any industry. Not because of opinion, but because of knowledge. So in the future that you find one that is knowlegeable, please hang on to him and refere him to yours to take care of all of you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    5
    Installer by, Wife home, I'm at Work. Fuses fried to the point that holder does pull out of sub-panel. He claims manufacture defect on fuse box. He replaced fuse box, stated, "the wires a litter small for it but it will do fine". He left box, I use if needed against him later. As you mentioned, my Electrician told me not code, especially after him telling my wife the amp draw in 34. I left a message for him to contact me. I am working on contact Trane (like getting to the President). I have been referred to a Sacramento company that handles sells and training - Fergenson Air. Left message about this issue. I'm mainly looking for Trane to state that this is not the standard that they expect there units to be installed and to pull this guys contract with them if he does repair. I also will let Trane know about liability of fire, since this guy represents the company by installing their product. I will let you know, but based on this guys demeanor, I don't expect a happy camper! The was no permit pulled either per my property records. - Is 34 amps to much for the unit to draw? - It does have a electric air filter system, which was part of the original installment. My wifes is ready to just have our Electrician run the 8g and call it a day...would that include the wire from the fuse box to the unit? Or do they come code with the unit?

    Thanks,

    rick

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Fl
    Posts
    69
    I hate to hear it when a contractor doesnt do right. It could have been a simple mistake, that could have been made right. All he had to do was say "hey man, this unit is pulling a few to many amps for this wire so we are gonna have to put in 5kw and if that is not enough heat for you, you need to get an electrician out here to run another wire.

    I dont know if you can find it in your heart to give this guy another chance, but around here if you do stupid **** like that and dont pull permits on top of it, you lose your license.
    Maybe you can be upfront with the installer and tell him what you know and that he needs to make it right. And if that doesnt work.....I guess you gotta burn him.

    As far as amps: amps = watts/volts 7500/220 = 34 So just the strip heat will pull 34, then add a few for your blower.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Fl
    Posts
    69
    that electronic filter not on a seperate fuse?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by JonDeere View Post
    that electronic filter not on a seperate fuse?
    We don't do a lot of electric heat up here in the Northeast. However, we do a fair amount in Cottages here in the 1000 Islands.

    One thing to note is that you have to run different gauge wire depending on whether you are running aluminum or copper. I can't remember if the install book shows both or not. However, if one guy is saying you need bigger wire, and one is not, my assumption is that the one that says you don't is using the wrong chart.

    I also would agree with the other person that wrote. I would call an electrician in and put the liability on them. Putting in larger breakers/fuses is what people that burn down homes do. There's a reason those things are there, let them do their job.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    1,920
    Quote Originally Posted by intofire View Post
    Installer by, Wife home, I'm at Work. Fuses fried to the point that holder does pull out of sub-panel. He claims manufacture defect on fuse box. He replaced fuse box, stated, "the wires a litter small for it but it will do fine". He left box, I use if needed against him later. As you mentioned, my Electrician told me not code, especially after him telling my wife the amp draw in 34. I left a message for him to contact me. I am working on contact Trane (like getting to the President). I have been referred to a Sacramento company that handles sells and training - Fergenson Air. Left message about this issue. I'm mainly looking for Trane to state that this is not the standard that they expect there units to be installed and to pull this guys contract with them if he does repair. I also will let Trane know about liability of fire, since this guy represents the company by installing their product.

    rick
    Before you comsume all your time and effort into this, let get what is importnant done first correctly.

    Maybe when the unit installed, the contractor DID mention to the previous owner about the small wire. But the owner ignored it and let you inherit this problem. He likes cold. But the contractor made a small mistake is to leave the 7.5 KW heater in with a honest assumption that the owner will have the wire fixed by licensed electrician.

    As far as Trane ... stuff, well "did you have a qualified and license electrician replace the fuse box?" If he is qualified, then he should never ever said such thing. Trane has nothing to do with it -- anything outside Trane's equipment is not Trane's problem. I am not Trane's advocate.

    So what I am saying is that, let have it done right and your house and family be safe and that is the most important issue needing more of your time.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    68,324
    Quote Originally Posted by just_opinion View Post

    Maybe when the unit installed, the contractor DID mention to the previous owner about the small wire. But the owner ignored it and let you inherit this problem. He likes cold. But the contractor made a small mistake is to leave the 7.5 KW heater in with a honest assumption that the owner will have the wire fixed by licensed electrician.
    Excellent point.

    The contractor may have properly sized the aux, and installed the proper size for the home.
    But, the Original owner, may have decided NOT to pay for the proper wire to be ran. (As pointed out above). And just had them leave it non functional.

    And didn't tell you.
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    5
    Ok guys, thanks for being part of my extended family as is my firefighter family. Its great to see public customer service, I think in a way, we are loosing this with businesses though.

    In regard to the installer, yes, I'm a waiting his call and responding off his demeanor.

    Lined up is: CA contractors board, County Inspectors, Trane (so far doesn't care-they only sell the unit), local News complaint program, BBB, and fuse box company (to see if they realy have a problem with box as indicated by installer).

    Again, though, does the wire from the fuse box to the unit need to be 8g also or is it just the run to the fuse box????
    rick

    Stay Tune for News at 5

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    5
    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    10 guage wire is too small for 7.5KW's of electric resistance heat.
    My want to point out to installer, that its a code violation to connect that load to 10 guage wire. He can see that by looking in the National Electric Code book.
    beenthere,

    good point, however, per previous owner (we have had good standing relations with), stated after first finding that the heating elements were disconnected and first fuse blown stated - he was advise that system wiring was correct and the heating elements were DC to save on electrical cost (then why not put in a gas system????), ---but install told my wife that he ski's with the previous owner --- what the...

    rick

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