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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Rep Power

    ***** leak in 110ton unit chiller barrel

    I work on a ship with a chill water system that services nine air handler units, all interconnected by a head tank. We have been "making up" water in the system and I am suspecting a possible gas leak into the chiller barrel, thereby causing the chill water to be entrained with gas and thus expanding. I put my leak detector in the air space at the top of the head tank but did not pick up gas. Since ***** is 4 - 8 times heavier than air, I suspect this is not the best way to test. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Rep Power

    Re: ***** leak in 110ton unit chiller barrel

    Normally the first thing you know about a leak in a refrigerant/water heat exchanger is a compressor failure...

    If the refrigerant is entering your water, it still wouldn't add volume to your system, it would form bubbles that would be vented out (or escape) in your tank.

    The best (only?) way to check for refrigerant that escaped in to the water would be to do what you done, electronic leak detector above the surface in the tank. Remember, *****s might be heavier than air but it's still much lighter than water...

    Another recommended check would be the sight glass on the refrigerant circuit (if fitted).
    Is it at the same level as before?
    Any moisture indicated?

    Happy hunting.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Rep Power

    Re: ***** leak in 110ton unit chiller barrel

    Small leaks will be absorbed by water, only large ones would form boubles.

    The sight glass Viking mentioned is the best option.

    ...or recover the refrigerant and do a pressure test.

    Check that all air vent valves are closed in the water circuit, this could be a problem too.

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