View Full Version : Copland scroll running with lowere than recomended amount of oil.

John F57
28-05-2014, 03:49 AM
Armstrong Air Conditioning Inc. (Lennox)
*Concept 12* Heat Pump
Model Number: SHP12B30A-1 A
Installed: 06/10/1996

I'll be brief.
I lost refrigerant through a pinhole leak in the "A" coil (evaporator). In addition to the refrigerant, I captured 8.1oz. of oil that came out of the leak. I repaired the leak. (properly brazed. No RTV silicone) A HVAC professional was called to recharge the system. He was told of the loss of oil but did nothing but add R-22 to the system.
The system originally shipped with 38oz. of oil in the compressor. It now has just under 30oz. and is running. 8.1oz is over one fourth of the system total. The HVAC guy didn't seem to think it to be a big deal. I beg to differ. I just don't think it's a good idea to continue to run this compressor with over a quarter of the original oil charge gone. What say you? Opinions/suggestions welcome. The "professional" will be here tomorrow (Wednesday 05/28/2014) to replace a discharge over-temp thermostat as well as a delay on break timer. What can I say to him to get him to discharge the system and add the missing oil.:confused:

John F.


28-05-2014, 10:48 PM
He doesn't need to discharge the system to add oil.

An oil pump can be used to add the oil into the system without problem.

Remember, you are the paying customer, if you want it then you should have it.

John F57
29-05-2014, 12:20 AM

Thank you for your rapid response to my query.
The HVAC guy was here today at noon. He brought with him his gauges, a container of oil, some R-22, a digital scale and a misc. assortment of tools. I asked him what the plan was and he responded that it was to put the oil in, check the charge and replace the discharge over-temp. thermostat. I didn't hover over him and went off to do something else. I did happen to pass by once and saw that he had what looked like a large syringe drawing oil from the container he'd brought with. I didn't see what he did or what he used to introduce the oil back into the system. I have to assume that he did put the 8.0 oz. back in. He was here almost an hour and charged me only for the part (which we'd agreed should have been done during the initial visit). As he was preparing to leave he said he wanted to come back and re-check the pressures because it appeared the the system was a bit low. He also said, as a matter of explaining why he didn't want to add to it today, that he thought there might be a "slug of oil" in the expansion valve causing the low reading and that running the unit for awhile might allow the ***** to circulate that oil into the rest of the system. He's coming back sometime tomorrow (Thurs.05/29/2014) to check on this.

This compressor is 20 years old. It was installed new, in 1994. My fear is that since it was running for the past couple of days (with over a quarter of its oil gone) since his last visit, he may not have really put the oil in and if it fails in the not too distant future, he can always say that it was at the end of it's life expectancy and was bound to happen at any time anyway.

So... my new questions are:
1.) What is the typical life span of these compressors?
2.) What are the usual failure modes? (motor bearings go bad, brushes worn out or the scroll section - seals etc.) Aside from running while low on oil.
3.) You mentioned using an "oil pump" to put the oil in. Is this a machine of some sort or a manually operated device. Perhaps the syringe thingy I saw?

In advance, thank you for your time.

John F.