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Old 07-11-2019, 09:27   #1
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Freon leaked out of appliances?

Hey,

Question: We left the boat for 3 months and turned off all appliances.

When we got back, two of our ACs and a fridge all had leaked freon and were no longer cooling.

Is this normal? We've talked to many AC/fridge marine pros and they are all saying something different.

The boat is only 1.5 years old. Everything was running great beforehand.

It just seems like such an odd coincidence.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:47   #2
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

All of them at the same time? That is bizarre.

The only thing I can imagine off the top of my head is that there was some sort of chemical corrosion involved.

Any corrosion obvious? I'm thinking a bottle of chlorine gassing off for three months in a cabinet, destroying the copper exchangers or something.

Just a shot from the hip.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:58   #3
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

Yes, all at the same time. We are really puzzled by this.

The three appliances are all in different areas of the boat (different rooms). They aren't connected in any way.

No corrosion.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:17   #4
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

Crazy temperature swings? Maybe uneven expansion/contraction causing a temporary leak?

It always amazes me how well these rickety looking refrigeration setups full of a zillion joints manage to hold up... Seems every time I'm sweating copper pipe at home I end up with a leak or two despite being shined like a new penny and full of flux. Difference between knowing WTF you are doing and not, I guess.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:21   #5
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

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Crazy temperature swings? Maybe uneven expansion/contraction causing a temporary leak?

It always amazes me how well these rickety looking refrigeration setups full of a zillion joints manage to hold up... Seems every time I'm sweating copper pipe at home I end up with a leak or two despite being shined like a new penny and full of flux. Difference between knowing WTF you are doing and not, I guess.

No, we're in Florida so the temperature is consistent.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:44   #6
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

Not at all "normal", seems extremely odd for 3 at once, looking for commonality were they all charged or installed by the same guy 2 years ago ? Something has leaked in all three.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:44   #7
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

I have no experience with AC unit for marine use, but in the RV field the units we have had required freon at about 2-2.5 years. Warranty period is usually 2 years..(coincidence, conspiracy theory, interplanetary alien interference? You decide)
From my time in the automotive field I can tell you freon will eventually escape any system, even sealed cans on the shelf waiting for sale.
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:41   #8
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Freon leaked out of appliances?

No it is not common, Id say a good system ought to hold for 10 years.

See our electric compressors are sealed, meaning that the motor and all is in a can, where an automotive system is belt driven, meaning that there is a seal around the shaft that leaks, so some leakage is normal.

There is no fundamental difference between your marine systems and a house heat pump or window unit, think how long it is before a house needs Freon? Should be at least a decade.
Ive even had automobiles go more than 10 years before needing refrigerant, and some leakage is unavoidable on them.
Id be very suspicious.
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Old 07-11-2019, 14:12   #9
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

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Originally Posted by Calif.Ted View Post
Not at all "normal", seems extremely odd for 3 at once, looking for commonality were they all charged or installed by the same guy 2 years ago ? Something has leaked in all three.

The two ACs are Dometic. They replaced them under warranty for free thankfully. They said there must be a leak somewhere.

The fridge is Isotherm.

They were all installed by Lagoon at the factory.
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Old 07-11-2019, 15:05   #10
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

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No it is not common, Id say a good system ought to hold for 10 years.

See our electric compressors are sealed, meaning that the motor and all is in a can, where an automotive system is belt driven, meaning that there is a seal around the shaft that leaks, so some leakage is normal.

There is no fundamental difference between your marine systems and a house heat pump or window unit, think how long it is before a house needs Freon? Should be at least a decade.
Ive even had automobiles go more than 10 years before needing refrigerant, and some leakage is unavoidable on them.
Id be very suspicious.
I'm suspicious, but I don't even know what to be suspicious of in this situation. I'm just confused now.
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Old 07-11-2019, 17:14   #11
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

Are they all water cooled?
If so then that is the issue.
If it doesnt leak, then it should run forever.
As far as refrigerators on boats....I get asked this all the time..."should i turn off my fridge?"
My answer is always this, "do you turn off your fridge when you leave home on vacation?"
The hardest day of any refrigerators life is the day you bring it home and plug it in, all the heat it has in it has to be removed, once it is cooled fully then it will never see the type of heat load it saw when you plugged it in.
Thats why they last, first...no leaks, cannot have leaks in a refrigerator that we are producing by the thousands right?
Second, clean power, your household power is much better over the long term than most marinas.
Third, saltwater...needs no explanation i guess.
Make it easy on your fridge, fill it up with drinks, make sure the power supply is reliable, charger is on and working, gaskets are good, and leave it on!
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Old 07-11-2019, 17:29   #12
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

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Are they all water cooled?
If so then that is the issue.
If it doesnt leak, then it should run forever.
As far as refrigerators on boats....I get asked this all the time..."should i turn off my fridge?"
My answer is always this, "do you turn off your fridge when you leave home on vacation?"
The hardest day of any refrigerators life is the day you bring it home and plug it in, all the heat it has in it has to be removed, once it is cooled fully then it will never see the type of heat load it saw when you plugged it in.
Thats why they last, first...no leaks, cannot have leaks in a refrigerator that we are producing by the thousands right?
Second, clean power, your household power is much better over the long term than most marinas.
Third, saltwater...needs no explanation i guess.
Make it easy on your fridge, fill it up with drinks, make sure the power supply is reliable, charger is on and working, gaskets are good, and leave it on!
The two ACs are water cooled, but not the fridge.
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Old 08-11-2019, 12:11   #13
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

Quote:
Originally Posted by newsailor0193 View Post
Yes, all at the same time. We are really puzzled by this.

The three appliances are all in different areas of the boat (different rooms). They aren't connected in any way.

No corrosion.
Someone stole your Freon. As wise ass as that sounds?
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Old 08-11-2019, 17:54   #14
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

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Someone stole your Freon. As wise ass as that sounds?
I was just thinking about that.. also gotta ask yourslef who has access? And I do know of a buddy that has an AC business, well he sells a new unit to a customer, couple months go by and he has to go back and put freon in a brand new unit! It happens no big deal. Well then not very long later he has to add freon again! Since he's doing this under warranty he thought something fishy was going on. So he put in a security camera. As it turns out the neighborhood kids we're coming over there and huffing freon to get high! Yeah. Just a thought
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Old 08-11-2019, 19:28   #15
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Re: Freon leaked out of appliances?

It was a gang of meth heads looking to get high. Case closed, boys.
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