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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
    Posts
    4,842

    Fieldpiece SOX2 yea or nay?

    I've read all I can find (here at least) and really did not find any actual opinions about the overall performance of the SOX2 for CA other than the usual "mines better, bigger etc, yours sucks". I would like a less cumbersome instrument for quick checks and the company (Field) propaganda seems inviting but how about honest real world use? I know it's a cheaper tester and as such you normally do get what you pay for. If YOU are actually using one on a regular basis, what are YOUR thoughts?
    A good HVAC tech knows how, an educated HVAC tech knows why!

    DEM


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Fullerton
    Posts
    774
    Quote Originally Posted by heaterman View Post
    I've read all I can find (here at least) and really did not find any actual opinions about the overall performance of the SOX2 for CA other than the usual "mines better, bigger etc, yours sucks". I would like a less cumbersome instrument for quick checks and the company (Field) propaganda seems inviting but how about honest real world use? I know it's a cheaper tester and as such you normally do get what you pay for. If YOU are actually using one on a regular basis, what are YOUR thoughts?
    Here's info from the source. The SOX2 doesn't do full combustion analysis. Full combustion analysis will calculate Efficiency, carbon monoxide air free, carbon dioxide, excess air, etc. The SOX2 measures oxygen and temperature. It can calculate excess air and carbon dioxide. But does NOT calculate efficiency and carbon monoxide air free.

    However most manufacturer's spec their furnaces just on the oxygen level in the flue. So you can make adjustments to dial in the oxygen level. The reason it's cheaper is full combustion analysis equipment have to measure an additional temperature and carbon monoxide so you need more sensors in the machine. You just have to ask yourself what do you want to do with the piece of equipment.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
    Posts
    4,842
    Thank you Russell. I had the reasons for the price differences figured out and am cognoscente of the differences in what each type of instrument are capable of. My question revolves more around the SOX2s use in the real world and other techs opinions on accuracy, ease of use, quirks and overall merit as another test instrument. The fact that I don’t really need or want a lot of the information provided by a $3000 CA instrument under normal circumstances with regard to normal PMs and start-ups is what peaked my interest in the SOX2.
    A good HVAC tech knows how, an educated HVAC tech knows why!

    DEM


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Fullerton
    Posts
    774
    Quote Originally Posted by heaterman View Post
    Thank you Russell. I had the reasons for the price differences figured out and am cognoscente of the differences in what each type of instrument are capable of. My question revolves more around the SOX2s use in the real world and other techs opinions on accuracy, ease of use, quirks and overall merit as another test instrument. The fact that I don’t really need or want a lot of the information provided by a $3000 CA instrument under normal circumstances with regard to normal PMs and start-ups is what peaked my interest in the SOX2.
    Cool. I'll let the techs give their opinion and keep mine to myself. We get a lot of confusion on the SOX2 and combustion analysis, so i just wanted to clarify for anyone reading as well as yourself. Thanks for looking towards us, and best of luck with the search.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    1,762
    I have one, and from personal experience, it was a big waste of $. I too was tempted by the low entry level cost, but that is exactly what you get a low level POS. I've used mine for all of 6 times. It sucks so bad, it gave me the inspiration to save the money for a real CA. After a bit of convincing, my boss decided to go halves with us and we all got the Testo 327's. Now this is a real entry level CA. It works, and it's easy to use.
    Trust me, you will be sorry that you spent even $100-$150 off eBay for the SOX2. I'll tell you what, if you want one, I'll sell you mine for $50. Not sure that the O2 sensor even works properly though. So you might have to get a new sensor. And yes I only used this POS a half dozen times.
    The major faults:
    The squeeze bulb split open at the seam after using a few times.
    The unit collects so much moisture I had to use a secondary water separator cause the one that comes with it lets moisture right through.
    The check valves lock up very quickly in the sample tube/squeeze bulb assembly.
    The temp sensor is a pain in the $$$ to keep clipped to the sample tube.
    The unit doesn't really give you all of the information you need for a true analysis, but I knew that when I bought it. Though, with all the problems you will have with it, will you really trust the results that it gives you?
    The Testo 327 oil kit is still an entry level unit, but it was well worth the $1300 - $200 rebate. I use it a lot with out any issues.
    "The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing" Socrates

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Fuquay Varina, N.C.
    Posts
    421
    I do not own the SOX2 unit, but what I wanted you to think about was what you will use it for, when I owned my heating and air business in Pennsylvania I purchased the most expensive unit at that time, PCA55 from Barrack (spelled wrong I know), every test I did either at start up or after a service we entered the customers name and printed out the test results one for our records and a copy for the customer. we even included the smoke test strips used in oil burner units.
    The reason was, sometimes things go wrong, the customer gets a bad oil delivery and the unit soot's up and creates a mess in the customers home, the insurance company wants to pass the blame and the cost of clean up onto someone else, and you say you had Joe Blow Company here last month to service your heating unit, why they must have caused the problem that created this mess, their Insurance will have to pay to clean this up.
    If I was doing any service or install on any combustion appliance I would strongly recommend that you get a unit that will give you the ability to record and print out the results of the work you did, it is called CYA.
    RSES Member.
    Mainstream Engineering Certified.
    HVAC/R PM Technician.
    410A, & GREEN HVAC/R Technician.
    NATE Core.
    Working not as to please men but to the Glory of Christ my KING.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Fullerton
    Posts
    774
    Here's the new version of the SOX3

    http://youtu.be/sKMdchUPjes

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