Best type of Leak Detector?? - Page 2
Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Results 14 to 26 of 27
  1. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Yuma, Arizona
    Posts
    924
    doc's first post hits the nail dead on the head...
    I have a H-10, DTEX Select, Dtex Tex-mate, Ultra-Sonic, and soap. I have used all and all have their benefits. Sometimes need to use one or the other due to the problem at hand.
    But all the above are good.

    Spit works well also.
    Yuma,
    What is snow? Is it that white stuff in a freezer?

  2. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    GEORGIA
    Posts
    1,532
    Leak Detectors' are alot like ladies hand bags...

    Buy Quality..and take care of it...

    I depend on my J/C RLD H10...I would like to get a Teckmate as a back-up[sorta like my 380]

    Once agagin, as an old wholeseller...these are probally the most senative and highest maintenance tools you have on your vehicle...

    I know this is very much againest the thinking in our trade, but..read the instructions and follow them...
    Stephen
    "Value our Differences"

  3. #16
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    39
    I only read three replies that mentioned bubble juice. I use it a lot (I also use an H10). Are bubbles old hat now? Also, no one mentioned common sense.

  4. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    45
    i use the yellow jacket dye leak check myself with a uv light

  5. #18
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    carrollton ms
    Posts
    3

    Thumbs up

    i have found that all those expensive leak detectors are a waste of hard earned money mr bubbles in the toy section of your local wal-mart you know the stuff kids blow bubbles in the air with finds any leak no-matter how small and only costs $1.98 for a gallon put it in a squirt bottle and wham instant leak finder,you can pass the savings on to the customer and bid lower and get more jobs

  6. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Yuma, Arizona
    Posts
    924
    Originally posted by cdenley
    i have found that all those expensive leak detectors are a waste of hard earned money mr bubbles in the toy section of your local wal-mart you know the stuff kids blow bubbles in the air with finds any leak no-matter how small and only costs $1.98 for a gallon put it in a squirt bottle and wham instant leak finder,you can pass the savings on to the customer and bid lower and get more jobs
    I can tell you from first hand experience that those expensive detectors HAVE made a big difference and made my job easer and better. The bubbles are the final test to confirm. I have had a leak that blew straight through the bubbles but with the detectors I know where to look. Saves me time and time is money.
    Yuma
    What is snow? Is it that white stuff in a freezer?

  7. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Gold Coast of Connecticut
    Posts
    4,566
    I also use common sense, H-10, D-Tec and bubbles. Also have the plug in 115v yokohawa h-10 type unit as a backup.
    Aire Serv of SW Connecticut- Gas heat, dual fuel and central a/c systems installed and serviced

  8. #21
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    39
    Guys,
    First off, I'm not as internet savvy as I'd like to think. This is the fourth time I've tried to post a response, and I hope you folks will forgive me if I forget who wrote what.


    It seems to me like there is no silver bullet as regards refrigerant leak detection. I've almost always used bubble juice and an H-10. Someone's post referred to it as as a Yokagawa H-10. I think they're the same H-10 whether they have the Yokagawa, Mars or JCI or GE or whatever name. The rumor I get has it that the OEM is Yokagawa. They all certainly look the same. I don't know much about the H-10's competitors.

    I've never used UV dyes, although I'd be interested in hearing about them. I have reservations about them. I wonder what adverse effect the dye has on the refrigerant circuit. Beyond showing leaks, it can't do any good, unless the dye is in a good oil base and the compressor was low on oil. The first two times that I saw a UV dye check, the serviceman had neglected to give the refrigerant circuit a sponge bath prior to inspection, and every old leak showed up as a "false positive", to use medical drug test lingo.

    I have no experience with ultrasonic detectors, but I'm looking forward to that. The postings I read sounded like some of you guys had really good results with them.

    Bubbles seem to have their limitations, too. I've had leaks where the gas "...blew right past..." to use someone's posted phrase, and never showed up. I suspect that it is an issue where the bubble juice needs a cavity whereby capillary action can supply the juice for anything more than the first or second bubble, especially on large leaks. Also, leaks sometimes respond more (as in more bubbles) to either the thin (Big Blue) or the thick (can't think of a name) bubble solutions. I carry both.

    I got the opportunity to look like a damn fool recently. Usually I find a leak (bubbles or H-10), fix it, pressure test with nitrogen and a whiff of refrigerant, sniff, more bubbles, evacuate to 500-800 microns, wait an hour, and if there is no appreciable rise in microns, charge the system and get on with life. Well, eventually I found four major leaks in one circuit. Somehow, each time (three pull-downs) I was below 800 microns and holding. I was beginning to wonder when they would lose confidence in me. One of the leaks was in the condenser (air cooled), so I could buy the idea that it might not leak as much when the system is cold. I'd add that it was the last leak I found, and it blew big bubbles when the unit ran. Duh. In my defense, I'd say that that leak was a rub-through at the steel plate at the end of the tube, and that the leaked refrigerant went which way the wind blew, in or out of the compressor/controls housing. Please don't convict me for not finding it right away. The other three leaks were in a schraeder valve and two backseat service valves, neither of which backseats any more. They're kind of petty leaks (but in this particular case, all "relatively" large leaks in a small system); you replace a schraeder valve. You dig out and replace valve packings. However, they all take time to find and fix, along with a continuously decreasing level of acceptance from the cutsomer.

    So,
    Bubbles? Seem to work in a lot of situations where the bubble juice can meet the demand for bubbles. I don't recall ever having a rust/corrosion problem from using it, although I usually wipe it off with a rag. I freely admit that my shop rags have no special anti-corrosion properties. Have any of you guys had any corrosion problems? Bubbles sometimes require a little patience. An inspection mirror, a flashlight, and about ten minutes seem to be the minimum for results.

    UV dye: First time really good? Later? I have poor experience. In all fairness, with proper preparation, it probably would have found all four of my recent problems at once. At any number of other jobs, it would have been a complete waste of time.

    H-10: good for small leaks, where it isn't saturated by a large leak, or where the wind isn't blowing, or where the housekeepers haven't used chlorine bleach in their mop buckets? I once chased a leak all the way into the men's bathroom, to a mop bucket. Is that what they mean by thinking outside the box? I confess that the tone of a saturated H-10 reminds me so much of screaming children that I covered/muffled the "speaker" port with electrical tape to save my sanity. I've tried turning an H-10 down from the minimum "metronome" ticking level so I could look for large leaks, but mostly ended up looking like a fool in the end.

    Ultrasonic detectors? I don't know, but I'm intrigued.

    It seems to me like the best way to know which leak detector to use is to already know which kind of leak you have. Hmm.

    I'm never above learning a thing or two. Let me know what you think.

    Regards,
    Rotorbar

  9. #22
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    central arkansas
    Posts
    17

    leaks

    I have two leak detectors that i have over 600 invested in and still use dye, uv, and bubbles. If you see dye then try bubbles on that spot to see if it is old or new. Want to buy some leak detectors?

  10. #23
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    39

    I mean this the best way; when you see that glow under the UV light, do you wonder if it's an old leak that got fixed long ago? Does it spread and diffuse so you can tell it's old? How do you first clean up so you know that the dye you are seeing is new? Do you not care, and just put bubble juice on every spot that glows?
    Every time I claimed I knew everything I ended up looking stupid. So, I'm listening. Who knows; I may end up going out and buying a UV rig. My step daughters would then probably "borrow" it to see if it would help them tan. That falls right in line with taking tools out of your van to do stuff at home. Sure as anything, the next day, whatever tool you forgot to put back in your van is the tool you need.

    Thanks, and let me know.

  11. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    davenport, iowa
    Posts
    778
    Rotorbar; someone posted in a previous post that they use soap bubbles and start at say 50 psi and increase pressure in 50 psi increments which helps find a leak. I haven't had to use a leak detector as of yet in my short one yr+ career working on transport reefers.found all leaks with bubbles, on a couple of units , the other techs have used a leak detector and a standing pressure test.
    Da Threadkilla

  12. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Tampa, Florida
    Posts
    706

    Arrow oogene

    oogene, easy to use bubbles when everything is right there in front of you. you are able to access almost all sides to apply bubbles. they have a national spelling bee, they should have a national leak detection competition. create some competition and truly test some of these detectors. i use an ultra-sonic, then bubbles to pin point. i love showing off my ultra-sonic to the other techs in my company. half of them have converted to ultra. the shop even purchased on just so all techs have availability to an ultra. we use exclusively amprobe ultras!! good luck, check my previous posts, i have wriiten about it many times.

  13. #26
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    39
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by oogene
    [B]Rotorbar; someone posted in a previous post that they use soap bubbles and start at say 50 psi and increase pressure in 50 psi increments which helps find a leak.
    ===========================
    As regards leak checks, I skip the preliminary stages and start at 150 PSI.

    It's funny; I worked on Thermo Kings a long time ago (at least 25 years ago). I was always amazed at their ruggedness and durabilty. That old Perkins diesel with its oversized oil sump. And that tortured, twisted fan belt, that seemed to work anyway. Mount this thing on the front of a semitrailer and it will do whatever you want, wherever you want, so long as you feed it diesel fuel. Count on nothing more than a few lightbulbs to tell the driver what's up. Hopefully he understands what the bulbs mean. Hopefully he looks in the driver's side mirror once in a while to check them.

    I'd say yours is a challenging job. You don't know if your repair is good until the trailer comes back, and you may or not know if that load of strawberries spoiled on the trip because you missed something.

    Regards,
    Rotorbar

Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event