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Old 04-05-2015, 10:21 PM   #1
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A/C Tripping Breaker

We have two Cruisair systems running off of one seawater pump, currently in heat mode. One system is working fine. The other is tripping the breaker after the fan runs for a few minutes. It is producing heat, but not for long.

According to the brief instructions I have, the only thing that really requires maintenance is the fan motor, which is supposed to be lubricated every six months. I can access the motor very easily and can even see the instructions on the motor that lubrication is required, but I can't see where to actually do it. Can anyone help?

Unfortunately, my instructions don't have any trouble shooting guidance. If the fan motor lubrication doesn't solve the problem, does anyone have any other ideas of what I should check/look for. The sea strainer is clean.

Thanks, Mike


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Old 04-05-2015, 10:41 PM   #2
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When was the last time you flushed out the coils in those units? Is the water flow coming out of each unit the same?
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Old 04-06-2015, 01:38 AM   #3
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I don't know about your unit but a lot of fan motors oil ports are closed with a small plastic plug pressed into the hole. They may be quite small and if they have black plugs , hard to see. Do not lose those plugs as the ports will fill with dirt if left out after oiling. Then the ports will not take oil readily.

Use a mirror to look around all sides at each end. Maybe someone assembled the motor so the oil ports are upside down. You may have to turn the motor is that is the case.

Try contacting Cruisair asking about this OR Often more detailed info is on the website of companies like this.

Check the current draw with the unit fully up and running. Startup current will be much higher than spec. so can be ignored.

Check the connections at the breaker. If those connections are the least bit loose they can heat up causing the breaker to trip even though the curent draw is in spec.

Check the other connections such as wire nuts, screw terminals as looseness here can cause trouble.

Breakers can also start nuisance tripping as they age. They have springs and little levers which can go awry.
If the connections are good and not showing overheating signs, the current is in spec. then maybe the breaker is getting goofy.
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Old 04-06-2015, 08:23 AM   #4
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When was the last time you flushed out the coils in those units? Is the water flow coming out of each unit the same?

I've never done it, but we've only owned the boat since November, and she has been winterized most of that time. I checked the water flow this morning. It is the same regardless of which Cruisair unit is running.


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Old 04-06-2015, 08:26 AM   #5
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I don't know about your unit but a lot of fan motors oil ports are closed with a small plastic plug pressed into the hole. They may be quite small and if they have black plugs , hard to see. Do not lose those plugs as the ports will fill with dirt if left out after oiling. Then the ports will not take oil readily.

Use a mirror to look around all sides at each end. Maybe someone assembled the motor so the oil ports are upside down. You may have to turn the motor is that is the case.

Try contacting Cruisair asking about this OR Often more detailed info is on the website of companies like this.

Check the current draw with the unit fully up and running. Startup current will be much higher than spec. so can be ignored.

Check the connections at the breaker. If those connections are the least bit loose they can heat up causing the breaker to trip even though the curent draw is in spec.

Check the other connections such as wire nuts, screw terminals as looseness here can cause trouble.

Breakers can also start nuisance tripping as they age. They have springs and little levers which can go awry.
If the connections are good and not showing overheating signs, the current is in spec. then maybe the breaker is getting goofy.

I did see two small black rubber pieces. They didn't look like they would come out, but I'll give them a try.

I'll try your other suggestions as well. Thanks!


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Old 04-06-2015, 08:51 AM   #6
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I seriously doubt it has anything to do with the fan. I would first acid flush out the coils and see what happens.

If that doesn't cure it then have a tech come out, look it over and then put some gauges on it to check the pressures if need be.
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Old 04-06-2015, 09:04 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Capt.Bill11 View Post
I seriously doubt it has anything to do with the fan. I would first acid flush out the coils and see what happens.



If that doesn't cure it then have a tech come out, look it over and then put some gauges on it to check the pressures if need be.

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Old 04-06-2015, 09:26 AM   #8
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Doubt its the fan without additional noises like squealing, loud humming, rubs, etc. What happens if you only run the fan without the compressor for say 10 minutes? Measure the current through the breaker with a clamp-on ammeter. Measure it first in the fan only mode. Then measure with both fan and compressor running. Is the current above the breaker rating? If no and its still tripping, replace the breaker.
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Old 04-06-2015, 09:35 AM   #9
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Are the units heat pumps or are the heaters the Heat Strip kind if heat strips they may simply be overoading the breaker, and nothing wrong with the fan. I have 3 zones in my boat in heat mode I can run two fine, if I turn on the 3rd the breaker will trip, in Air cond. mode the 3 can run all day no problem. Apparently the heat strips draw more amps than the Air cond. an electrician told me I could change one of the heaters to the other 30 amp shore inlet and it would be ok. I havent done so yet.
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Old 04-06-2015, 09:52 AM   #10
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There is really only a few things which are going to cause this.

1) Corrosion on the electrical wires or connectors causing resistance.
2) Scale build-up in the coils. (Far more common)

Either would cause this to occur with both AC and heat.

Get some Barnacle Buster and clean the coils first. This should be part of regular maintenance (every couple of years). Almost nobody does this and, as a result, this becomes a fairly common problem.
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Old 04-06-2015, 10:23 AM   #11
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If you have a contact number for the previous owner give hima call he may have experienced it before.
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Old 04-06-2015, 11:41 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Capt.Bill11 View Post
I seriously doubt it has anything to do with the fan. I would first acid flush out the coils and see what happens.



If that doesn't cure it then have a tech come out, look it over and then put some gauges on it to check the pressures if need be.

I have some muriatic acid on hand. Do I run it through the system like I did the pink stuff when I winterized?


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Old 04-06-2015, 11:44 AM   #13
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Also...I did oil the motor. No help. It still cut off. So I will try flushing coils as soon as I confirm the method.


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Old 04-06-2015, 12:31 PM   #14
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I know with mine if the unit does not sense water flow, then it will trip the breaker within seconds....
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Old 04-06-2015, 12:49 PM   #15
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I have some muriatic acid on hand. Do I run it through the system like I did the pink stuff when I winterized?
I wouldn't use muriatic - it is much stronger than necessary and can damage components. Barnacle Buster is much safer and very effective. The easiest way to use it is to put some Barnacle Buster in a bucket with a small bilge pump. Hook the bilge pump outlet to one of the AC cooling lines and have the other cooling line empty back into the bucket. Let it circulate for 30 minutes or so.

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Old 04-06-2015, 01:44 PM   #16
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Thanks for everyone's help on this. It turns out it was self-inflicted. This unit has a second fan and outlet in the pilothouse, which I turned off the last time we were at the boat. So it turns out that because the airflow was restricted to just one outlet, the unit was tripping the breaker. Lesson learned. Thanks again.


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Old 04-06-2015, 02:49 PM   #17
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I have some muriatic acid on hand. Do I run it through the system like I did the pink stuff when I winterized?


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Properly diluted muratic acid will work fine. Mix up a 25% acid to 75% water solution. Then you need to dig up a flush bucket with a pump and return hose that you can hook up to the inlet and outlet of the coils. Flush it through for 30 minutes or so. Use all the normal precautions you would working with any acid.
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Old 04-06-2015, 02:52 PM   #18
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I wouldn't use muriatic - it is much stronger than necessary and can damage components. Barnacle Buster is much safer and very effective. The easiest way to use it is to put some Barnacle Buster in a bucket with a small bilge pump. Hook the bilge pump outlet to one of the AC cooling lines and have the other cooling line empty back into the bucket. Let it circulate for 30 minutes or so.

Ken
Barnacle Budter works great. But not in 30 minutes. It has to circulate much longer in most cases because it is so mild.

"Barnacle Buster is a safe, non-toxic and biodegradable marine growth remover specifically formulated to meet an industry wide need for fast, safe, cost effective alternatives to mechanical cleaning of seawater cooled equipment. With minimal dismantling required, Barnacle Buster can be safely re-circulated through seawater cooling systems, dissolving barnacles, zebra mussels, calcium, rust, lime & all other mineral deposits. Most applications can be completed within 4 hours!"
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Old 04-06-2015, 05:05 PM   #19
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Good news Capt Bill!
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