View Full Version : Water in *****

28-06-2004, 07:42 PM
Hi Guys.

I want your opinion on what I'm telling you:

Early this morning at 05:00, started to replace a compressor, trane 60HP at a rubber factory. Its very tight there and I need to use a forklift to change the heavy compressor - about 400 KG and by 10:00 I started with vacuum after a leak test.
While the system under vacuum, I've put in two new contactors 90 amp, its a YY start. took down two 60KG ***** 22 from the van and went for a cup of coffee.

So far so good. Came back and started to fill the system with liquid gas and I cant tell you why, but after some 25 KG, I stopped and started the unit. within 20 seconds the compressor tripped on low pressure, BUT.......... the pressure in the suction line was still 80psi.
It sould not cut out so high. Checked the pressure control, OK, try again and the same, so there must be something between the suction line and the compressor. Collected the gas and open the bolts and you will never guess what I saw. A BLOCK OF ICE!!??

Very strange, I open the system early in the morning for maybe one hour, it was under deep vacuum for a few hours with temp of 35C.

No water leaks, nothing seems to be wrong but where did the water came from??????????
Sat down, had a cigarette and more Turkish coffee and my brain runs tike a gyro. Than I looked at the ***** bottle. No, it cant be. But I got up put my hand in front of the bottle, opened the liquid valve and watched my hand getting coverd with frozen *****, closed the valve and to my big surprise, my hand was wet with water!!!!
To make sure, I took a bucket with a bit of oil, put the end of the pipe in the oil, covered it and run liquid ***** into the oil.

when I took the cover off, the oil was white from the water!

So, water in *****, did you ever heard of such a thing?

Now I'm waiting for my supplier reaction to that story,
Well, you learn a new thing every day!! :)


28-06-2004, 10:49 PM
Sounds like someone cleaned the bottles with soap and water instead of the proper cleaning agent doesn't it Chemi ?

Anyway, real hard luck for you eh ?

28-06-2004, 11:29 PM
Chemi, have a tyail too tell thats simmler but ave just cum in from pup and a bit pissed so will speke to you in morning cheers dill hic!

Dave Goodings
29-06-2004, 04:17 PM
Hello Chemi
Once had something similiar on cascade system fitted rebuilt compressor and would not pull deep vacuum found compressor sump full of water when I spoke to rewind company
[semi-hermetic] they said yeah we use water too cool the body after fitting new stator LOL!! suffice to say we did not use them again

29-06-2004, 04:25 PM
Hi Dill.
Have a cup of strong black coffee and come again.

Hi dave,
From asking around, its not a new problem but I was lucky not to have it.

I'm still waiting for an answer from my supplier, I've offered him that he will supply new gas, oil and driers and I will put in the work. I think its fair enough but lets see what his reply will be.

One thing for sure, I will not buy gas from him anymore! :mad:


29-06-2004, 07:34 PM
Hi chemi, that was a good night. Yes, I have had problems with contaminated refrigerant. I use an international very reputable refigeration company to supply refigerant as they give a good 24hr service and are competitive. But one shipment of 45 x 60kg bottles of r22 contained a contaminated bottle. As the system is a flooded evap , high side float and I have fitted large duplex oil filters to the pressure side and a 25 micron to the suction side the impact was'nt as bad as first thought. We have a fixed pump out system and a large holding reciever so the charge was easily recovered. Suction socks and new sillica were fitted and the oil changed all at the suppliers cost. The problem first came to light when the offending bottle was being disconnected after charging and a brown goo was noticed comming from the charge line. The bottle was sent for tests as an incident like this could have had severe cosiquenses for the supplyer. It was found to have reclaimed r22 and dirty mineral oil. Somehow this bottle had been mixed with virgin bottles along the line as the offending bottle looked brand new. Obviously some unscrupulous person had used it to reclaim refrigerant by tampering with the nrv.

30-06-2004, 05:19 PM
It seems to me that a bit of moisture in the system is a lot different to water in quantity.

If you have that much water it will be dispersed through the system and will already begin plating the bearings and getting up to all sorts of mischief. The chemical contamination begins immediately and continues while everyone is sorting out who is to blame.

I think you will have a long expensive dehydration process on hand to get that system to an acceptable state. Because if you don't get it all out it will continue to fail for years to come.

I had a similar episode here in the mid 70?s and invited the supplier to involve their insurance company at the outset because the fix was very long and very expensive. It concerned a new 50 ton chiller and it was touch and go at the time as to whether the chiller was scrapped. We wanted their loss assessor involved at the start before any money was spent.
In short, If the water came in the refrigerant, keep it safe. I would suggest an independent analysis not only of the refrigerant but of the water as that will tell you its origin if there is a dispute.Your refrigerant supplier will (or should) have insurance for this sort of thing and as they will be paying it's down to them to agree what is done, but on behalf of your client it is your responsibility to see that the job is done to the best standards, not the cheapest option.

I recall writing a 10 page method statement for that repair of mine based on 100% best practice.

Hope this helps
uhwh (http://uhwh.com/)

29-07-2004, 02:09 PM
Isn't it against the law to vent ***** to check if it's contaminated or not?

It's so strict in the US you even have to evacuate and recover residual gas from empty refrigerant cylinders.

29-07-2004, 02:29 PM
Isn't it against the law to vent ***** to check if it's contaminated or not?

It's so strict in the US you even have to evacuate and recover residual gas from empty refrigerant cylinders.

Yes it is in the UK, too. It?s covered by "The Environmental Protection Act", 1990, but in the absence of registration of users and the completely free sale of refrigerant in this country, the onus of proof is not easy and that's why there are few prosecutions.

The heel of gas in the cylinders is a difficult thing to capture, that?s why re-usable cannisters are banned here.

It's also illegal to deliberately vent in the rest of the EU under various member states? national laws, but apparently not in Israel.
marijuana sativa (http://strainindex.com)

29-07-2004, 03:44 PM
Hi Argus.

A lot was written here about enviromental nonsense.

Personaly, based on tons of papers mainly from the internet, I do not belive, not for one second that refrigerant are responsible in any way to any enviromt problem.

To our case, I might be one of the only ones who recover.
No law in my country about it and R-12 and R-502 are still available.

I would like every one who read this post to look in the mirror and think of how many times you have blasted the sky with refrigerant instead of recovering!

To my problem again. The end was that I emptied the the system ( there is no way I will recover water in my recovery unit) and the oil from the compressor, left it in deep vaccume with two vaccume pumps and two 2hp hermetic compressors, eact one had a 2 hours "shift", the ambient was in the 40C so it helped a lot.

The system was left like this for 4 days, new oil was filled, new dry gas ( checked before - from another manufacturer),
an additional drier housing was installed in paralel to the one they had, the system started up with no problems, run for one week, took a test of the oil and gas - no traces of moisture.

Didnt loose money on that job but didnt make much, will never pay for the wet gas ( about 1.5L of water in 110kg of gas)

change my gas supplier and customer is very pleased with my service.

End of story.

Chemi ;)

29-07-2004, 04:39 PM
chemi this is an outragous thing to say -

" would like every one who read this post to look in the mirror and think of how many times you have blasted the sky with refrigerant instead of recovering!"

everyone knows you should always use it to clean the condenser out when you 'blast it'



29-07-2004, 04:54 PM
My dear Richard.

In my case, the condenser was on the roof some 40m walk and climb.

My service hoses are only 72 inch long.


Can't reach. :D


07-08-2004, 01:57 AM
chemi this is an outragous thing to say -

" would like every one who read this post to look in the mirror and think of how many times you have blasted the sky with refrigerant instead of recovering!"

everyone knows you should always use it to clean the condenser out when you 'blast it'


richard That's funny :D

10-08-2004, 07:20 PM

Talking of environnement

I would like every one who read this post to look in the mirror and think of how many times you have blasted the sky with refrigerant instead of recovering!from chemi

everyone knows you should always use it to clean the condenser out when you 'blast it' from richard

Pleased guys do not encourage the use of bad pratice ;)
Like cleaning a drain with R-22 bottle,

But never forget that all halocarbure refrigerants are really damaging to the environnement so use them carefully

10-08-2004, 07:53 PM
Here we go again......

10-08-2004, 09:40 PM
Hi Chemi :)
I suspect the water can in the cylinder because the cylinder was hydralic strenght tested with water and not properly dehydrated afterwards, or a vaccumn was pulled on a number of cylinders at the same time by a manifold with a leak in it. I have added gas to a plant once contaimated with water, R22 on a flooded chiller, nearly drive me nuts getting it out :(
should have dumped the charge, but I didn't want to ruin my recovery unit or blow it off, just kept draining the chiller off at the bottom and kept changing the driers, shed loads of driers. Anyway the plant no runs well, even with a little run on the inside of the steel pipes. In a way I was lucky the suction strainers caught any moisture before it entered the compressor, some the nice SMC108 Sabroe was un effected. :o

Kind Regards. Andy.

P.S keep blowing off that gas I like a warm summer :D
Just kidding Kathleen :p

10-08-2004, 09:43 PM
:D Sorry my spelling is getting worse, good job I don't drink. I think I need a holiday :eek:
Kind Regards. Andy.
PS the last run should be RUST and before the first run should read NOW

11-08-2004, 02:51 PM
Hi Andy.

Maybe its because you DONT drink. It will sort your mind out.

for your information, you can edit your massage by clicking on the edit botton :)


03-01-2005, 10:15 PM
hey there , water in a refrigerant cylinder , that's weird . . :confused: . but that the water entered the system with the refrigerant and didn't cause the compressor to fail that's weird enough for me .
Anyway Chemi what was the refrigerant trade mark you were using so we be aware from it , was it an Indian made refrigerant "Joker" or a "DuPont" or what ?

04-01-2005, 06:41 AM

Had already the same problem in the past. Fault is not the manufacturer but those who refill for the manufacturer locally the bottles.
They have to clean and/or evacuate the botlles before each refill. If they don't do this or it was done on a Monday morning, then you can expect faults like this.

05-01-2005, 04:36 PM
Peter ...
Thanks for replying , but it seems that i missed somethng because in lebanon refilling refrigerant cylinder is prohibited by the laws , so we just have bottles filled in their country of origine . . . and never heard of that water was in a refrigerant cylinder . ..
anyway thanks for the information , i really never knew that refrigerant is refilled in other countries

05-01-2005, 04:47 PM
Hi Botrous.

I buy ***** in 55KG bottles. The Refrigerant dealer is collecting the empty bottles, refill them and deliver them back to me.

(some money is changing hands but that another story)

If he doe's not cclean the bottles and vacuume them before, he might get water in them.


05-01-2005, 08:53 PM
Thanks for the information Chemi , i never bought 55 kg refrigerant bottle , the standard size here is 13.6 Kg per bottle

05-01-2005, 09:14 PM
We have both, 13 and 55 kg.
But where we buy our gass, they fill it from big cilinders from something around 5.000 kg I guess. They're approved to do this.
It's also not allowed here to refill them. Most of the new bottles even have a non retun valve build into it to prevent refilling.
But I know it's not allowed but what can I do then with all the botlles I bought in the past?

Westfalen (Germany) made me an offer in November to sell gas at competitive prices in cilinders of 13 kg and I don't have to pay for it to use the bottles. So why losse time any longer with filling.

I will use my old bottles for temporary removing the gass out of the system.

Same for our small soldering sets: we refill ourselves the gas and the oxygen. Yes, yes... I know. :D

05-01-2005, 11:38 PM
Well i tried once to refill an empty cylinder while evacuating a system , so why gas loss i thought , so i pierced an empty refrigerant cylinder and soldered a valve and made vaccum to the cylinder . I emptied a system in , not all of it , as soon as the pressures are equal no gas transfer is made (sure u can put the cylinder in ice to lower it's tempreture ==> it's pressure lolol) now i am trying to make a recovery machine which filters the gaz from oil and moisture then liquify it to recover the refrigerant (like in a compressor change case ) i think that all i need is a compressor , an oil receiver , a good filter dryer , or maybe 2 filters fixed in parralelle so each one filters half the quantity in a reduced pressure of gaz (which gives more filter efficency) , a condenser and a good fan . . .

05-01-2005, 11:43 PM
A question that seems a little silly , but i want to ask it ...
As i know it is forbidden in European countries to release gas to the atmospher . . .
Does all the technicians follow the laws and regulations , if not how the goverment knows then and ticket them or discard their liscence?

06-01-2005, 05:36 AM
Hi all I am lucky I live in Canada we go to our local refrigeration wholesaler and pick up our gas any kind we have R404 , R22, R414, R134, HP80 , MP39, R410, R408, R409, R406, ahd many more. Our law as far as purging goes is simple you do not purge,as a business owner you must be able to account for every pound of gas you buy, if you put in 10kg in a system you must report to the government where the leak was and how you fixed it and the date and time, it is a lot of bookeeping.
well it is getting late i have work to do tomorrow so we must talk later.

06-01-2005, 03:05 PM
Now Wes, What doe's your government do with the report? :rolleyes:

Let me guess, its something to do with the organ you are sitting on!

This game is going out of proportion.

It reminds me of looking for the key under the light :D

Chemi :)

06-01-2005, 05:46 PM

On the service cilinders we have there is a liquid and a vapor outlet.

So, this is how I do it, perhaps not the easiest way but it works fine for me: connect the outlet of the receiver to the recuperation cilinder and let it run as long there is liquid passing in the sight glass of the manifold and the pressure doesn't go higher than 20 bar in the cilinder. Shaking the cilinder can reduce very fast the pressure again.
If pressure goes too high, stop system, release some pressure via the gas side valve on the cilinder into the LP pressure of my system.
You can add afterwards again lots of liquid after releasing some gas back into the system.

The moment I don't see liquid passing through my sightglass, I connect my manifold on the service connection of the discharge valve instead of teh service connection of the receiver on the unit and gradually close the valve so that discharge is pumping direct into the cilinder.
The only part which is then still under high pressure is that part above the pistons, so a very small part. Let the LP go somewhat under atmospheric pressure, stop the machine, close the recup cilinder and equalise LP and HP via manifold. If equalising pressure is under atmospheric pressure, then add some gas from the still connected cilinder.

If it's a smaller compressor without a service valve on the discharge, then I let it run well dow in vacuum an release afterwards the remaining high pressure from condensor and liquid receiver back into the much bigger volume of the LP system which I pull then in vacuum.

It seems difficult and a ong way to do it but for a system of let's say 5 Hp, it only takes some minutes to evacuate all the gas.
I do it this way now since 15 years. I have in my shop a recuperation machine but it's too big (1 m x 50 x 50 cm) to take it with me in my van.

You can indeed make an evacuating machine the way you described it Botrous, a simple condensing unit. Ever opened such a machine: there is not so much more in it but it cost twice or tripple the price of it.

It's like in all EU countries not allowed to release gas into the atmosphere but who controls it? Nobody.
It's our job to do it the best as possible and saving the environment.

Wesmax, it's even more easy here, they bring us our bottles and pick up the empy ones.

They also had the intention to let us hold a complete bookkeeping of the gasses, but again, who will control it?
We must keep some sort of log book for each compressor but there is nobody who controls this.

In the Netherlands, they had a very strict regulation about everything: how you ust make a flare, how to solder, how recharging, recuperation of the gass,... , the so called STEK regulations. You caould not buy gas if you were not STEK certified. Most of alll these regulations were banned end of 2004 under pressure of the industry.

Let us also not forget that we have here a very special government here in Belgium which is unique (and in fact very crazy) in the world: Belgium is divided in 4 sections for 10 millions peoples: the Dutch speaking, the French speaking, the very small German speaking and the Brussels Capital itselves. For each section we have a minister, so at least 3 ministers for education, 3 for transport, 3 for environment... It's sometimes more then difficult enough for 1 government to come to a global regulation, so can you imagine with 3 governements which all have to agree or at least become a majority of votes how difficult it is to chaneg excisting laws or make new ones.

One example: in the Dutch speaking part, there are somewhat 500 unmanned radar speed controllers, in the French speaking part some 15 (!) But the amount of the fines comes in some sort of a national fund which is then divided again almost equal between French and Dutch speaking parts.

06-01-2005, 07:06 PM
Peter thanks a lot , I really appreciate your help .
As for the regulations , 4 goverments wawwwwwww but the 4 runs the country in a harmonic way , here we have one goverment that really isn't able to run a country that's smallest than brussel itself lololololol.
Anyone can buy refrigerant , as a matter of fact , anyone can be an HVAC tech with or without a certification nor training , the law still didn't mention the qualifications you need to be licensed for the job :(

07-01-2005, 03:41 AM
Well you ask about reports and what is done with them well on the manufactured equip if a leak keeps showing up on the same part the manufacturer is asked to change and repair the problem, it sometimes works. generally it is just paperwork.but we are able to easly remove gas from systems as we can buy good refrigerant removal units here for gas and liquid, we were making our own but now it is just as easy to buy. Thanks for listening we must talk again.

07-01-2005, 01:35 PM
Well wesmax , it's good to have laws and regulations , but filling papers for each leak is a waste of time unless you are paid for that . . . what the goverment do with it , statistics ? and what if you didn't fill the papers , will they prosecute u ?

08-01-2005, 04:47 AM
Let me just explain what a person has to do to become a fully qualified refrigeration mechanic. First you must go through all 12 years of school as we know it here, then you find a refrigeration contractor that is or has other refrigeration mech working for him , and he can sign you up as an apprentice. Then each year you go to a special school for apprentice refrigeration mech, then for 2 months of each year for the next 4 years you go to school. If you pass the exams each year you will be a qualified refrigeration mech. After that if you want to work in other
Provences in Canada you can write another test and get a Red seal on your refrigeration Ticket which now allows you to work anywhere in Canada. This may seem a lot of work but the people who do get finished are mostly well qualified and do good work. Do any of you out there ever take courses or belong to societies that promote further education. Here a lot of us belong to Refrigeration Service Engineers Society.
Anyway enough about me do you have a procedure for tranning
of people in the trades.

08-01-2005, 08:38 AM
Hi Wes.

I guess in every place the system is different.

I like the system you have described and I think it has a lot of advantages but I don't like the idea of starting to work as apprentice without any knowledge and understanding whats happening inside the "copper tubes".

On this side of the Mediterranean its a bit different, first you have to go study for a year refrigeration and AC from all aspects, including the lowest degree of electricity.
Have to pass exams and get your papers, now you go out and start look for a job.

You can get a job with a contractor or manufacturer or continue to study another 3 years and get a degree in engineering or design and again, work for someone else or have your own business.
As all beginnings are difficult, most start with a well established company, work there, gain experience and customers and start work from home.

The problem with most small business, is that they don't learn anything new from that moment and just running after the $$$.

Moi for instance is doing it for many years but have to learn new things all the time so I have now a degree also in electricity which give me an advantage of doing also electrical jobs, mainly control boards and maintenance jobs/

I have studied computerised controllers which I do less cause customers insist on low price.

I do not need to do any more tests in refrigeration and electricity and licences are for life, just pay for them every 4 years like driving licence.

With my electricity licence, I can do jobs in the UK cause its the same rules.

Chemi :)

08-01-2005, 06:19 PM
Well guys in Lebanon the education system defers , at 15 the guy enter a technical school for 3 years in HVAC major , he will be graduated as skilled HVAC technician with a lebanese technical bacalaureat , he graduate at 18 , if he wants to improve himself , he enters the industrial technical institute (where i teach) for 3 other years and will be graduate as superior technician in HVAC and will work as Forman or project director , if he wants to improve more he enters the higher technical industrial insitute to graduate with a L.T ( Higher technical diploma ) (technical engineer) HVAC major , he will work as team of designers manager or a designer.

08-01-2005, 06:23 PM
Sorry i forgot to mension , no rules or regulations issues who is liscenced to work or not , the technical domain isn't yet organized ==> anyone with a little expeirience can work :(

09-01-2005, 02:58 AM
I do think that as long as there is a system that is all that is requioried . I have almost finished my time in the trade I now like to pass my knowlege on to others I am 64 and would like to pass what I know to others that is why I work hard at RSES
because I can teach others. I have thought of going to another country to work or teach. Last year I hoildayed in Denmark ,
Germany, Holland, and enjoyed it I was on a course in Denmark for Danfoss and am very well traned and have sold danfoss equip for a few years now . Thanks to all who take the time to read all these messages. More later.

09-01-2005, 06:01 PM
With my electricity licence, I can do jobs in the UK cause its the same rules.

You will still have to register with the Council though Chemi to comply with Part P :D

Just a thought though - if we register with say, Birmingham Council, can we only work to Part P in Birmingham? or do we have to register with all Councils if we work nationwide? :confused:

09-01-2005, 09:00 PM
Hi Frank,

Being under British mandate for quite a few years, many of the laws are the same.

I did some years a go the electricity for my in laws in Scotland, Had an inspector from Scottish Power and after he checked my leicence, he signed all the papers and gave them power.

So far So good ;)

Chemi :)

06-02-2009, 08:02 PM
I am having problems with my 200 ton chillers.The compressors are going out on electrical and mechanical problems.I had a ***** test done and the results came back.I had 1 reading 9 ppm,another one 11 ppm.I have talked to some people and they said that should not be a problem.Can some one tell me if the ppm are to high in the refrigation circuit.

07-02-2009, 09:50 AM

Firstly welcome to the forum.

This thread is about 5 years old, so you could have started a new one, but no matter.

Your question seems to have two parts. The purity of refrigerants is governed by various standards, you could try searching ISO, ASHRAE or ARI, but the purity relates to the original manufacturer, so the standards themselves may be academic to your problem.

By memory, most single component and blended refrigerants are made to purity tolerances in the order of 4 to 6 ppm or better.

Your analysis figures are not radically high and probably don’t pose a problem that you can’t cure with a good set of liquid line driers. But, be careful – opening the system can often introduce more moisture than you take out.
Frankly, I wouldn’t bother doing anything with those residual moisture values.

As to the reasons for the other issues, you’ll need to post a bit more information.


07-02-2009, 10:21 AM
It is so nice to have all this sond together Thanks people.

08-02-2009, 07:03 AM
we had a case of water in our refrigerant many years ago , there was water in brand new disposable jugs, i cant remember exactly which refrigerarnt it was but would have been cfc or hcfc

10-08-2009, 06:07 PM
hi what is simple test for sure that no water in ***** bottle,before charge it into the system?

17-08-2009, 10:42 AM
hi what is simple test for sure that no water in ***** bottle,before charge it into the system?

Bottle with built in non return valve like all charging bottles from *****s manufacturers! That way, you could only pour refrigerant out and nothing cannot contaminate ***** in bottle.
Reclaimed single component refrigerant should be cleaned thru special equipment for that purpose before attempting to recharge your system with used refrigerant.
Refrigerant mixtures should not be attempted to recharge in system because of possible changed ratios.

17-08-2009, 12:01 PM
I Chemi We had a customer who tested there 50 ton chiller they repaired it then tested it w/ water to test it then called us to fix it.
after draining the water and 3 days of pulling a vac w/ heat lamps .
We add a duel LL shell dryer to the system w/ valves and change the 3 time's

17-08-2009, 07:05 PM
Refrigerant mixtures should not be attempted to recharge in system because of possible changed ratios.

This seems to be a hoax Nike :p

17-08-2009, 10:16 PM
This seems to be a hoax Nike :p

Yep, you are probably right!:confused: