Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    51
    Post Likes

    Oil seperator question

    Broad question maybe but what are good indicators that you might have a bad oil seperator? Any good diagnostic tips for someone new to them? And how difficult are they to change? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Northern NV
    Posts
    1,477
    Post Likes
    Low oil in the compressor sight glass for one... If it is low, run a defrost cycle and see if oil comes back. Took several thaw cycles to do so with my Vogt Ice machine.

    I had one that the filter gauze fell apart on. No worse than a receiver to change out. I did install a sight glass in the oil return line so I could monitor oil flow...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Wi
    Posts
    601
    Post Likes
    I'm not a fan of oil separators because they are not 100 percent effective some oil still gets by them.

    If the system is not piped for oil return it will eventually run out, an oil separator only makes it take longer.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Guayaquil, EC
    Posts
    13,582
    Post Likes
    Quote Originally Posted by zapatasblood2 View Post
    Broad question maybe but what are good indicators that you might have a bad oil seperator? Any good diagnostic tips for someone new to them? And how difficult are they to change? Thanks
    One of the simplest methods of diagnosing an oil separator's performance is to check the oil return line which returns oil back to the compressor. With normal operation one would observe the line temperature at near room temperature for a while and then get hot for a short time. This would indicate that the internal oil return float is functioning properly. A sightglass in the line is helpful to determine if the hot return line is caused by returning oil or by hot gas. Hot gas would indicate the float is stuck open.

    Here's a booklet from Henry which summarizes some good information on oil separators, with a diagnostics chart near the end:

    S-9130.pdf

  5. Likes trippintl0 liked this post
  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    3,364
    Post Likes
    Oil separators and broken dip tubes in accumulators are tough to catch, mostly because they aren't very common, and you have to be careful since they both will throw some of the same symptoms.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    51
    Post Likes
    Thread Starter
    Thanks for the reponses guys. Im going to check out that PDF icemeister. Looks like good stuff. Im new to oil return systems and just trying to learn as much about it as possible.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Richmond, working under tarps
    Posts
    898
    Post Likes
    post the make and model separator you have

    there are few quick tests that i could give you depending on the setup

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Medford, N.Y.
    Posts
    5,076
    Post Likes
    Check out the Sporlan "Oil Level Control System",Bulletin #110-10
    Check out the AC&R Components "Oil Separator" bulletin # OSB81-1
    Check out RSES/SAM & Eaton Controls "a study of oil separators in refrigeration systems" RSES Section #4.
    All a Good Read.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Northern NV
    Posts
    1,477
    Post Likes
    If I condemn a part like an oil separator or accumulator, I then do an "autopsy" to discover the cause of death. Can be very instructive.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor MagazineThe place where Electrical professionals meet.